Keeping up with book industry news is important for writers, whether they are published by one of the Big 6 or are publishing themselves independently. Why? Because you and your books don’t exist in a vacuum. What happens “out there” in the publishing world will have some effect on you and your books, and if you want to make the best decisions possible, then it makes sense to pay attention and get all the facts.
With that in mind, I’ve decided to start compiling links to articles that I find interesting and useful. I’m not sure how frequently I’ll do this, maybe monthly. We shall see.
So here we go:
Anne R. Allen’s post Indie Publishing in 2013: Why We Can’t Party Like It’s 2009 has gotten a lot of traction, and there’s some good stuff here. It does seem more difficult to market books now than it was when I published Charlotte Collins: A Continuation of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice in 2010. Marketing venues and techniques that worked then are less successful now, and thanks to Amazon’s algorithm changes, the $.99 price point is less effective for gaining visibility. However, I am not as quick to believe that Amazon is trying to limit indies or that the DOJ decision is detrimental to our success. I think the changes are largely due to the rapid growth of the indie book publishing world.
On that subject, Bowker’s report on self-publishing will tell you exactly how much the indie pubbing industry has grown: 287 percent in 5 years (based on numbers through 2011). That means there are almost 3 times the number of self-published titles as there were in 2006.
So how do you share your books with readers if there’s so much competition out there? Dean Wesley Smith has good ideas. Among my favorites are: make every book better, be nice, and keep learning the business.
Lest you start to think it’s only hard out there on indies, take a gander at News Corps problems. The industry is changing for everyone, not just us.
What will you be doing differently in the new year as the publishing world continues to change?