Tuesday, Mar 15, 2011

The Changing Publishing World

Over the past few years, major changes have occurred in the publishing world. As huge publishing conglomerates bought out the smaller publishers, many of these smaller publishers had to close down. Also, many Mom-and-Pop bookstores found it difficult to survive.  I know of two major Christian bookstores in an area where I lived that were forced to shut down because of lack of sufficient business. 

Yet, even some major publishers are suffering from the economy. As a result, they have established what they call “subsidy” arms whereby they invite authors to pay a portion of publishing costs in exchange for being published.  This practice has stirred up great protest among authors established with these publishers. The authors object to the fact that their reputable publishers are now resorting to what amounts to vanity publishing. These authors feel that the prestige once associated with having been published by a major publisher has now significantly diminished. Worse yet, because of the stigma traditionally attached to vanity publishing, these authors feel that the value of their work has diminished in the public eye. 

Be that as it may, the publishing industry is definitely changing. We are seeing more and more authors resorting to electronic publishing (e-book publishing) through Kindle, ePub, and other venues. Authors are discovering that electronic publishing dramatically shortens the time between submission and publication and that royalties skyrocket from an average 10% to 70%. 

There is a lot to be said for a form of publishing that gets your book out there and earns you a decent living.  At the same time, it is important that your book be of topnotch quality. Getting it to that level usually requires the services of a professional editor. 

If you are considering electronic publishing, do your homework. Then, if you decide it is for you, do it.  You may discover that you have found your publishing niche.

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