Go Read This | Ugly rumours | theBookseller.com

Sara Lloyd is great and to an extent, she is on the money with this column.  The problem is that she’s only right to the degree that we accept the current model is permanent.

We still have an eye to the future, of course. We still ask each other: “So . . . what do you think is the Next Big Thing?” We still geek out and ponder the impact of HTML5 on epub. We feel the need to prepare for that, but we’re feeling better and better equipped to do so.

The fear factor is abating. A sense of “business as usual, but different” is descending. Books are not being killed off. We’re simply adjusting to an additional format. Of course, this is exactly the time that we should all give ourselves a great big poke in the ribs, sit up straight and pay attention.

I tend to think it isn’t and while the book is in no danger (although it will certainly change and adapt and morph), publishers very much are. Which is why it’s nice to see here last lines:

Necessity is the mother of invention, but relaxation is the mother of a short sharp shock, so let’s not rest on our laurels. Not yet. Not for a long time

via Ugly rumours | theBookseller.com.

Go Read This | The Asymmetry of Waste in the Age of Abundance — A Reversal of Scarcity’s Balance « The Scholarly Kitchen

Great piece on scarcity, abundance, content and strategy, or at least the thinking necessary to get there!

The asymmetry of choice in the age of scarcity allowed providers to define the available choices. Now, consumers choose from a myriad of sources and versions. Any asymmetry they may experience in the future could be the asymmetry-of-choice — controls they impose for their own convenience, not for the convenience of producers. This creates uncertain demand for providers, and the move toward a more efficiently utilized information environment will have huge effects on all our familiar aggregations, packages, and delays.

The Asymmetry of Waste in the Age of Abundance — A Reversal of Scarcity’s Balance « The Scholarly Kitchen.

Go Read This | A Newbie’s Guide to Publishing: The Changing Face of Publishing

You should read the whole post, but I wanted to pull one quote out and think it over.

On the one hand, JA is right here. There will be fewer books printed. That will result in fewer books sold through bookstores.

However while that may well result in fewer bookstores the surviving stores will do better.

Follow the logic through:

1) Ebooks claim a greater share of book sales
2) Print runs drop (for most books) to accomodate this
3) Gross physical book sales drop
4) Marginal bookstores close
5) Marginal sales drift
a) away for ever
b) to ebooks
c) to other bookstores
6) Surviving stores will win sales and market share for print
7) Surviving (well run) stores will be more profitable even in declining print markets.

Fewer books printed means fewer sold in bookstores, who will no longer be able to stay open. Without bookstore orders, publishers will print even fewer books. And so on.

via A Newbie’s Guide to Publishing: The Changing Face of Publishing.

Go Read This | Macmillan Blog » Macmillan Response to Wylie Exclusive Publishing Deal

Its the undercurrent of anger that I just don’t get:

I said I would write here occasionally, when I felt it was important to do so. It is important now. Andrew Wylie has decided to become a publisher.

Welcome, Andrew. In today’s world job functions, channels of distribution, and age-old relationships are constantly shifting. Combining the functions of agent and publisher raises serious issues that I feel strongly about, but if Andrew wants to attempt to disintermediate publishers, that is his right.

via Macmillan Blog » Macmillan Response to Wylie Exclusive Publishing Deal.