Friday, April 1, 2011

Publishing: Dead, or Alive?

Behold the iPad in All Its Glory.Image via WikipediaThere certainly have been predictions of the death of the publishing industry.

The Borders bookseller’s declaration of bankruptcy certainly would support this view. Fewer books are being traditionally published each year. Everywhere we look magazines are struggling, and newspapers are going out of business.

On the other hand…

More and more writers are making their work available on blogs – arguably the simplest form of self-publishing. Every day more than 50 thousand new blogs are created, adding to the over 157 million already being published every day, according to BlogPulse.

iPad recently launched a daily newspaper at a subscription price of $0.99 a week – significantly less than the rarely-read newspaper that gets to delivered to my door.

By mid-year, 2010, Amazon reported that it was selling more e-books than hardcover books. Indie writers (and by that I mean those that choose to self-publish) are taking advantage of that trend, with more and more writers who have never had an agent or a traditional publisher hitting bestseller lists.

There are disruptive forces at play, the most important to this discussion being the emergence of mobile computing and electronic book readers.

While traditional publishing is no longer the only game in town, the publishing industry is very much alive.

The new publishing industry is still in its infancy, but like most new-borns, there is a lot of discussion, a lot of growing pains, and a lot of opportunity. The trick is to create some new rules and grab that opportunity!
Enhanced by Zemanta

11 comments:

Carol Kilgore said...

The industry is changing at warp speed compared to its former self. I'm at a crossroads trying do decide what to do with my own work. Good article.

Colette said...

Carol, I understand the crossroads. There are some compelling reasons to go the self-publishing route today.

Andree Santini said...

157 million blogs? So I guess only a small fraction of them are going to get a big following. That could be the case with self-publishing, too. I guess we better be enjoying the process if we're writing.

Colette said...

Andree, yes -- but if you think about it that's true with just about anything -- only a few make it to the top.

Joanne said...

Kudos to the publishing houses that do create the new rules, and find engaging and new uses for books and digital media. Watching it all develop, it seems like some innovative pub houses will move ahead of the pack, and others slow to move may fall by the wayside. An interesting transition going on.

Colette said...

Joanne, yes! if there was ever a time to innovate, it's now in the publishing world!

Liz Fichera said...

50K new blogs created each day? Wow. That is amazing. Personally, I love all of the publishing changes. There's nothing wrong with shaking up the status quo.

Stephen D said...

If soon there are no more bookstores will there someday be no libraries?

Colette said...

Good question Stephen. I imagine we'll still have a way to borrow books, but I envision that this will all be electronic, where you download a book to your device and then return it (or maybe it just self-destructs after two weeks).

One Womans Eye said...

I'm ready to step into the self publishing game!
If all goes according to plan my debut novel will be available in June.
Stay tuned!

Colette said...

Joanne, that's terrific news! I suspect the audience here will be very interested in your book!