From The New York Times:
BookStats, a comprehensive survey conducted by two major trade groups that was released early Tuesday, revealed that in 2010 publishers generated net revenue of $27.9 billion, a 5.6 percent increase over 2008. Publishers sold 2.57 billion books in all formats in 2010, a 4.1 percent increase since 2008.
The Association of American Publishers and the Book Industry Study Group collaborated on the report and collected data from 1,963 publishers, including the six largest trade publishers. The survey encompassed five major categories of books: trade, K-12 school, higher education, professional and scholarly.
“We’re seeing a resurgence, and we’re seeing it across all markets — trade, academic, professional,” said Tina Jordan, the vice president of the Association of American Publishers. “In each category we’re seeing growth. The printed word is alive and well whether it takes a paper delivery or digital delivery.”
And from The Washington Post:
The American Booksellers Association, the national trade organization for independently owned bookstores, counted a 7 percent growth last year and has gained 100 new members in the past six months. The association now counts 1,830 member stores across the country, up by 400 since 2005, according to Meg Smith, the association’s spokeswoman. The new stores have opened in at least 35 states, from New York to California, an indication that store owners across the nation see an opportunity to find a concrete niche in the e-book world.
“The takeaway is that independent bookselling is still a desirable profession and it’s sustainable,” Smith says.
Both articles are well-worth reading in full. Both publishing and bookstores deal in Story. Story, as Miss Teresa says, is a force of nature. When publishers or bookstores get away from story, they are moving from their positions of strength. Chocolates are not story. Coffee is not story. Music may be story, but most often isn’t. People who want story know where to go to find it.
While information wants to be free, entertainment wants to be well-paid.
Onward to truth, beauty, and story.