Top 30 Book Manufacturers
One unfortunate outcome, which isn’t good for anyone, is instances where publishers opt to reduce print runs or not reprint, because of cost considerations.
What is your reaction to Bowker’s recent report that the production of new book titles in the U.S. dropped by 18,000 in 2005 and that the United States is now second to Great Britain in book production?
Edwards: I don’t know how Bowker can count all new titles. I think that more titles are being produced than they can count. If someone is consulting/speaking on financial planning … he can produce his own book, give it out at his seminar and sell a couple thousand a year. That’s not showing up on anyone’s radar. We see all this niche publishing these days, I think there are more titles than ever. A guy can do 50 copies of a book now if he wants. It’s very hard to track. … If it doesn’t have an ISBN number, it is not showing up anywhere. [Bowker’s report] doesn’t scare me because the traditional method of publishing has changed. Anyone can publish a book now if they want.
Long: It has been clear in the last year that the U.S. markets have been fairly weak. We have tried to offset this by expanding our presence with European publishers that have the United States as a market for their product. The combination of our manufacturing and distribution capabilities allows us to provide both time-to-market and cost advantages for European publishers.
Tobin: We need to look at the full story: The article reported that new titles dropped by 18,000 in 2005, but it also reported that in 2004 the number of new titles increased by 19,000. 2004 was the biggest new-title output in history, and 2005 was the second biggest. A big part of the 2004 increase, we believe, was including a lot of the self publishers and small niche publishers that are starting to track …