New gatekeeper for the publishing industry
By: Marco Gustafsson
Experts say that e-readers is the biggest thing to happen to the publishing industry since the invention of paper. E-books have taken over keys from the open market from the biggest publishing houses. It has changed the landscape of the publishing industry. Authors can have their work globally available within a very short time. The whole process is amazingly simple and efficient.
For years the publishing industry consisted of the same old story. Aspiring authors had to go through intense scrutiny in order to get their novels published. Thousands of authors would mail their work to the select few publishing houses that were considered the elite players in the industry. Known as the "big six" -- these publishing houses seemed to have all the power in their corner. Aspiring writers would spend years just trying to get some sort of acknowledgment from them for their hard work. These publishers served as the gatekeepers to the publishing world and they were very particular about which authors would be let through the gate.
Finally there has been a major shift in who holds the power in the publishing industry. With a huge increase in e-book sales, products like the Kindle and the Nook have helped unknown authors take some incredible strides. The Kindle, made by Amazon is the biggest thing to happen to the publishing industry since the invention of paper. Readers can download any title they wish within seconds and begin reading immediately. Authors can create these titles at their discretion and publish them without having to go through one of the big six publishers. The Nook, made by Barnes and Noble has a much smaller share of the market, but their platform for authors to submit work is essentially the same.
Experienced authors and aspiring authors alike can start by converting their work into a Kindle document. Next they upload it onto Amazon's Kindle direct publishing platform along with a cover image and basic details. Authors can have their work globally available within a very short time. The whole process is amazingly simple and efficient. According to the article "An Introduction to E-book File Formats", with its own Digital Rights Management structure, Kindle format protects the e-book publishers and authors from possible piracy.
E-books have single-handedly released authors from the shackles of big publishing. Authors now have complete freedom to set their own prices, choose their own storylines, edit their own books and promote them as they see fit. Not only are publishers losing out on royalties from these self-published e-books, they are being eliminated from the publishing process altogether. This eradication of publishers from the book selling process is an amazingly ironic twist in the publishing game. The only ones getting royalties from these works are the authors and of course Amazon itself.
There are already quite a few self published authors who have seen some incredible success. Authors like Amanda Hocking and John Locke who were turned down by the big publishing houses are now seeing millions of dollars in e-book sales go straight to their personal bank accounts. It is now reported that e-book sales have surpassed paper book sales and have actually become the preferred choice for book buyers. Fortunately for the publishers, many of the more well-known authors are locked into contracts for years to come. But you can bet that once these contracts are up, many of these authors will consider self publishing their work and reaping all the profits for themselves.
Big publishers will argue that this self-publishing system has eliminated any sort of quality control. They claim that even poorly written books can be sold on the open market. While this may be true, this only means that the readers have now taken over the role of gatekeeper for the publishing industry. Through reader reviews, word of mouth and Amazon's ranking system, book buyers can quickly spread the word about quality authors that deserve recognition. In the same manner, pieces that are poorly written will quickly gain bad reviews, garner low rankings and have a high amount of returns. This system seems to work to everyone's advantage and has proven an accurate method of discovering the best reads. One thing is for sure: whatever transpires within publishing industry over the next few years, you can be sure it will be exciting!
Courtesy: Articles Factory