I sometimes wonder if there will become a time, especially w/ the new trend of self-publishing taking off so thoroughly, if there will simply be too many books to choose from and no one will sell as many as they once did. Like there will be an even bigger sea of new books and we'll drown in them, picking up only the best-selling, or most highly acclaimed.
One thing I've noticed, is that even in the VERY short time that I've been self-publishing, my numbers fall back down faster than they used to.
The trend with almost all books is that they sell really well the first month, slack off a little the second and the third month, and after about six months or so, they sort of drop off the map.
You can see this happen with huge publishers, small publishers, and self-publishers.
Are there exceptions??
TONS of them. Every year.
Looking for Alaska didn't hit the NYT until it had been out for YEARS, so... I'm just talking "normal trends."
The books I self-pubbed last spring held on higher longer than the ones I did last fall (even though the books I did more recently sold more over all. I suspect this is because my name is "out there" more and not indicative of current trends). But I do find it interesting that my numbers changed more quickly.
But with self-publishing being being more viable... When does it end? At what point will there be simply too many authors and books to wade through??
I was talking with a good friend the other day and she said - what happens when Barnes and Noble closes their stores?? The big publishers are going to be the ones with the money to take over cyberspace and push their books. How will the self-published authors and smaller publishers be able to keep up?
So my question is - will the trend of self-published authors continue?? Will it die out? Will just a few survive?
I've downloaded several self-published books lately where the STORY is good, but it feels like a first draft, not something ready for publication - I'm well aware my books aren't perfect. I've also read books by MAJOR publishers that I felt had flaws, and we've all seen a typo here and there...
My point is that when your book is in the top 50 on Amazon (or an even higher number that I don't want to say b/c I'd rather people NOT speculate as to which books I'm talking about), I want a certain level of writing and editing that just isn't always there, and is obviously not affecting sales. This is definitely not true of all self-published books. Some self-pubbed books are on my short lists of favs. Freeing Carter by Dawn, Grounding Quinn by Campbell, Easy by Webber, Suicide Watch by York... And very recently two friends of mine put out stellar books - The Truth About Faking by Moore, Tight Knit by Allie Brennan, and Reasons I Fell for the Funny Fat Friend by Ann.
I'm trying to keep my fingers in publishing everywhere, but at the same time - I sometimes feel a bit "on the outs" of the people who are strictly self-pubbed and also "on the outs" of people who are strictly traditionally published. This isn't important in the context of whatever point I'm trying to make in this post, but I still feel like there is this dividing line. I will say that it's blending away as more and more self-published authors land big deals with their self-published books. At the same time - they're sort of becoming their own elite class - or maybe that's simply my perception.
I'm not sure what the fix is, or that there is a fix, or even needs to be a fix.
It's that I find market trends fascinating, and I'm so scared of incredibly talented writers' books not getting what they deserve. It's happened in the past, and I'm so afraid of it happening even more in the future.
Maybe this is simply a plea for Barnes and Noble to stay open forever, but maybe if it doesn't, we'll end up with loads and loads of amazing indie book shops... Or maybe people will give up on "real" books sooner than we would have otherwise...
I KNOW this was a mess of rambles, but it's been on my mind a lot lately.
Wanna tell me I'm being neurotic??
Because I'm about to drown myself in the new season of Downton Abbey and ignore all the things I should do before my trip to Chicago. ;-)