Sunday, February 07, 2010

Sobering Stats About the Publishing World

A friend sent me an article called “The 10 Awful Truths About Book Publishing” which is an interesting and sobering look at the book publishing industry. Every writer and publisher should read it, especially those authors who are convinced they’ve written a bestseller guaranteed to earn a lovely retirement income. I don’t want to discourage writers from pursuing a career if that is your passion, but I do think all of us should be aware of the dark side of publishing, and there is one, trust me. Many of the stats presented in Steven Piersanti’s article I’ve read in other studies and his data is pretty much on the mark. Here’s the highlights:

. 560,626 new books were published in the U.S. in 2008 alone

. bookstore sales peaked in 2005, but have been falling since then.

. the average U.S. book sells less than 250 copies per year and less than 3,000 over its lifetime

. a book has less than a 1% chance of being stocked in an average bookstore

. it’s getting harder and harder every year to sell books

. most books today sell only to the authors’ and publishers’ communities

. most book marketing is done by authors, not publishers

. no other industry has so many new product introductions

. the digital revolution is not increasing book sales

. the book publishing world is in a never-ending state of turmoil

To read further details on each point, go to

Fatal Encryption can be found at
Taxed to Death can be found at

1 comment:

Cheryl Kaye Tardif said...

Very sobering indeed. This is a tough business to break into and it's not for the faint of heart.

I'm hopeful that if I do whatever it takes, I'll see a measure of success. And I have.

Keep on writing and people will keep reading.

Wishing you huge success! :-)