Saturday, December 19, 2009

Sea Change in Publishing?

I've heard it said, sparking controversy is a good thing---you know just to get people riled up and to gauge whether anyone is actually reading one's blog (or other writing). So, in the spirit of saying just enough to be irritating, here goes---nothing ventured, nothing gained.

I'd like to see some commentary about the sea change which appears to be underway (started a few years back) as book publishing models and book formats change to keep pace with book consumption.

Specifically, the traditional publishing model in which large inventories of printed books are (were) warehoused in anticipation of sales, must certainly have been affected by the growing interest first in e-Books and more recently in Print On Demand (POD). That shift to non-traditional formats (extent unknown) clearly has the potential to, in turn, affect the entire book publishing food chain from traditional publishing houses to printers to brick and mortar booksellers. It's no wonder traditional publishers, though resistant at first, have added e-Books and POD to their quivers just to stay competitive.

So, in the wake of this apparent evolution, bordering on revolution, in the publishing industry, what are your thoughts: pro, con or neutral? Any observers or prognosticators willing to predict the "whether"... that is, are traditional big box makers of books in a bind?


  1. Hi Bill, Thanks for your comment on my blog post. I see from your website we have some things in common. I was raised in the Air Force. My dad was a Sr. MstrSgnt, USAF and a recruiter after serving in WWII in the Navy on a Landing Craft Infantry ship. I was fascinated by your post on the ship. How is it that you came here on a across the Atlantic? It sounds like a story children might like top read about. Have you ever thought of writing about your experiences on this ship. I'm sure the photo you have would pique their interest. It certainly caught my eye, but then I've been an ocean lover since childhood. Merry Christmas to you and your family! Warm Regards, Kathie Langston

  2. I welcome the change that e-books and POD may bring to the industry - after all, we need to reflect the times we live in - but I would miss the brick-and-mortar bookstores terribly if they went away. We've been recording our history on tangible objects since the dawn of mankind, so going completely digital would be a crime, in my mind.