So Many Books
News just in from the world of publishing. According to Bowker, writes Jim Millot of Publishers Weekly
The number of new and revised titles produced by traditional production methods fell 3% in 2008, to 275,232, but the number of on-demand and short run titles soared 132%, to 285,394. The on-demand and short run segment is the method typically used by self-publishers as well as online publishers. With the decline in the number of traditional books released last year and the jump in on-demand, the number of on-demand titles topped those of traditional books for the first time. Taken together, total output rose 38%, to 560,626 titles.
So, what does this mean? It means that it's never been easier to get into print or harder to get published by traditional publishers. It means that traditional publishing—you write a book, a publisher buys it or takes the risk in paying for the editorial and production, and you get royalties—is shrinking, and shrinking rapidly; while non-traditional publishing—you pay and do it all by yourself, or you have a few copies in print and get virtually no royalties or publicity or distribution possibilities, is on the rise.
What remains even more true, however, is that it is harder than ever to make your book distinctive from, or stand out among, the half-million
other books that are vying for your attention. Remember: that's 560,626 titles in 2008 alone
, to add to all the others published last year, and the year before that, let alone on the docket for 2009 and 2010.
Still thinking of becoming an author?