Posted tagged ‘publishing company’

The Newest Market

March 17, 2008

Publishers everywhere are trying to figure out how to ‘get into’ the new media market. E books, blogs, etc. are attracting new generations of readers and in some cases replacing the role books used to play in our society. The best example is probably sites like dictionary.com – who used to go to college without a dictionary? Now students just hop online; who needs the physical book

It’s like Alexandra Erin, who maintains Pagesunbound.com said, “it’s a very simple equation: if money is being lost to free content, then that’s where the money is.

Today on Booksquare there is a great article. It states that contrary to the panic-position that less people are reading, the newer generations may actually be reading more. Included in the article are some ways that publishers are seriously behind – markets that are being run by fans and fanatics, rather then being exploited by publishers.

The position she doesn’t consider is that from a publisher’s view point, as long as the sites exist they are free advertising. The moment publishers create similar sites they are suddenly paying someone to run the site and adding to their own workload, and the sites are rarely create a direct form of income. Production departments across the board are looking at these sites and trying to generate buzz about their work on them; at least the major publishers are, so they are aware that those markets exist. But I think that their lack of direct involvement in the creation of such sites shows that they don’t believe that running the sites themselves (or similar sites) would actually generate more profit.

That’s is the biggest problem with the internet from a big business viewpoint – how do you use it to make money? The web requires giving away the content that you traditionally generated revenue from.

When that dilemma isĀ  solved, I think we will see an immediate surge of publishing companies jumping feet first into the virtual world.

A Writer’s Walmart

February 8, 2008

A friend of mine who works for a major book publisher recently said something very interesting to me. We were talking about independent publishers and sites like Pages Unbound and he said that publishing companies are a Walmart for writers. They are one stop shopping.

You spend your currency – your idea or manuscrip – and in return you get an editor, a designer, a producer, a production manager, a marketing director, someone to sell your book to bookstores, to take care of shipping, warehouses, etc.

The disadvantage of self-publishing is that the author has to do all these things themselves.

That, of course, is the advantage of e-publishing. It cuts out several ‘steps’ along the way. They cut out manufacturing, shipping, storing – the majority of the work of actually producing a physical work. This makes it much easier for an author to self-publish electronically.

As one of the speakers in our Book production and Design class said, you have to consider: A book that is 99.99% accurate allows for 3-4 mistakes per page; there are several thousand characters on every page. Many publishers manage to make far fewer mistakes then that. This is because every document gets checked and rechecked by multiple pairs of eyes.

When you consider that, you can begin to truly appreciate the work for an author who wants to self-publish. Especially since they don’t have the expertise in all the necessary areas. Most self-publishers are doing so for the first time – they need to learn and establish marketing bases, self-edit and do their own design work. It is a monumental task.