Friday, April 17, 2015

Publishing Facts You Probably Don’t Know

·         In 1885, 4,500 book titles were published in America.
By 1989, 45,000 new book titles were published.
In 2009, 1,335,000 new titles were released in the U.S.

·         There are over 7,000,000 books available for sale.

·         52% of all books are not sold in bookstores – they are sold by mail order, online, through book clubs, or in warehouse stores.

·         A decade ago, in 2004, 1.2 million book title sales were tracked by Nielsen Bookscan and only 25,000 titles sold more than 5,000 copies each.  Some 950,000 sold fewer than 99 copies.

·         First-time authors write 75% of the new nonfiction books published each year.

·         85% of all new titles published each year are non-fiction and 15% are fiction.

·         Chicken Soup for the Soul, with sales of over 8,000,000 copies, spawned a series that includes more than four score best-selling books.  It was rejected by 144 publishers.

·         Ray Bradbury received 700 rejections before any of his work was published.

·         A Time to Kill by John Grisham was rejected 45 times.  Stephen King’s debut novel, Carrie, was declined 30 times.  Even J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone was rejected – 14 times!  Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell was declined by 38 publishers.

·         Sales of romance books top any other genre by far, within fiction.  Women make up 90.5% of the romance readership.  In 2014, romance books brought in $1.438 billion in revenue.  Mystery brought in half of that.  Classic literary fiction revenue is a third of what romance generates.

·         In Book Publishing 101, Martha Marda notes this about book publishing’s history:

·         “Until around 1439, when Johannes Gutenberg invented a printing press using a winepress and movable type, books were copied by hand and were owned by churches, monasteries, and wealthy families.  Most books were copied on animal vellum (usually treated calfskin).  The concept of paper, a much more suitable material for mechanical printing presses, was imported from Asia, where books were printed using hand-carved wood blocks.  By 1500, 1,000 printing shops in Europe had produced 35,000 titles and 20 million copies.  The Frankfurt Book Fair, today the world’s largest trade fair for books, originated during the 1400s as a medieval fair where booksellers and printers could display their wares and buy the supplies they needed for their print shops.”

Additional Stats, Facts, & Quotes of Interest

1.      Robbie K. Baxter, in The Membership Economy revealed these statistics that show us how technology has penetrated our lives:

·         Ninety-nine percent of all adults have their mobile phone within arm’s reach every hour of every day.
·         There are 6.8 billion people on the planet, and 4 billion of them use a mobile phone.  Only 3.5 billion of them use a toothbrush.
·         Every minute, 100 hours of video are uploaded on YouTube by individual users.
·         Ninety percent of text messages are read within three minutes of being delivered.
·         The average 21-year-old has spent 5,000 hours playing video games; sent 250,000 emails, instant messages, and text messages; and has spent 10,000 hours on a mobile phone.

2.      B. Alan Bourgeois, director of Texas Association of Authors, revealed in C-Spot Magazine that writers need to be active participants in the marketing of their books: He wrote:

“In today’s marketplace, you have to do much more than authors of the bygone years did.  You must be willing to risk everything and spend ten times as many hours selling your book than it took to write it.  And that is where most authors fail.  It’s not even the willingness to work hard to sell the book, it’s the fear issue of losing everything if it doesn’t became a best seller. Reality is that your first book will not be a best seller, but you need to work just as hard so that your next book, or the third or fourth or even the twentieth book becomes the best-seller.  For when one of them does, then they all become a best-seller.”

3.      Forbes says the US has 513 billionaires.  7.1 millionaires live here, says Boston  Consulting Group.

4.       By 2050 it’s estimated that 31.4% of the world will be Christian and 29.7% will be Muslim.  14.9% will be Hindus and 5.2% will be Buddhists.  Just one in 500 will be Jewish.  The group that will grow the fastest, from 2010 to 2050, will be Muslims – jumping by 73%.  Buddhists are the only major religion expected to not show growth, declining by .3%.

Writers, please never violate these three rules!

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Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2015

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