Here’s to Publishing: Perspectives With Context

‘Consumers Do Not Need Help’ It will surprise few who know me that I mention wine in my opening commentary as Editor-in-Chief here at Publishing Perspectives.  Ever fond of the grape, I was drawn to Catavino founder Ryan Opaz’s recent piece at Medium, On Wine. A Tragedy. The key message for wine makers, Opaz opines,… Read More

Data-Dancing: How big is self-publishing?

‘Shock and awe.’ I’m here with the same question asked by my colleague, Bookseller editor Philip Jones in his companion piece to this one: How big is the market for self-published titles?  “The question is a simple one for which there is no simple answer,” Jones writes. “In fact, there are lots of complicated answers.” We want your… Read More

'Grace notes for ebooks': A new Trajectory for discoverability

When the machines read your book The Bookseller on the stands in London this morning reports that Bowker — the ProQuest-owned US ISBN agency and publishing research firm — is in final talks for a partnership with a company called Trajectory. The aim at Bowker is to offer authors and small publishers a new way to generate… Read More

At Frankfurt Book Fair: 'You gave me unlucky ISBN numbers'

“Prices should allow ready participation in ISBN…by all types of publishers” Ironically, that clarification of the mandate from the International ISBN Agency runs right into this comment in the United States: I wouldn’t be allowed to answer a question about, ‘Are you making a profit or aren’t you making a profit?’ That’s Beat Barblan, Bowker’s director… Read More

It Just Got Even More Expensive To Make Your Book “Visible”

It surprises many outside the business to learn that publishing actually does not know how many books are out there. We don’t know how many books are self-published. We don’t know how many authors are engaging in the marketplace. Imagine the auto industry without its serial numbers, unable to count or identify its cars — that’s… Read More

How Is Self-Publishing Maturing?

Despite our inability to measure the true breadth of self-publishing—as long as the key metric, the ISBN, depends on authors to pay much more for their identifiers than the industry does—we know that self-publishing is growing. What comes across as a more volatile debate, in some ways, is the question being asked among some authors themselves about their goals. Why are self-publishers self-publishing? Seems a crazy question, doesn’t it? But maybe not. Read More