Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Future Trends of Publishing

I was recently a guest blogger on Joe Wikert’s Publishing 2020 Blog with a post on the future trends of publishing. Here are the first few paragraphs. Click on the link below to read the rest of the story.

I recently caught a broadcast on my local NPR station from American Public Media about the troubled book publishing industry.

The most recent trend is that bookstores are ordering more books than they could ever sell because they are trying to compete with online book stores. They fear, according to the report, that if customers cannot find what they are looking for, they will go home and order the book online. Their fear is justified – after all, the average big box bookstore like Borders can stock approximately 100,000 titles while Amazon can list millions.

While book publishers may be rejoicing over increased orders, the orders are really a double-edged sword because the bookstores can return any books they don’t sell after 90 days.

To add to the problem, some bookstores are returning books before the 90-day window, waiting a week and then ordering more books. Now they have another 90 days to pay for the books and whatever they don’t sell they can return without losing a dime, according to the broadcast. More evidence that the publishing industry’s consignment model no longer works. Add to that decreasing book sales and you have a formula for disaster.

You can read the rest of the story by going to Joe Wikert’s blog.

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