Back in January I wrote about our experience with the 2010 Book Fair here.
April came around yet again for another year and off to the Book Fair some of the North Highland Publishing Team went.
This is one of the biggest events in the book publishing calendar with an estimated 23,000 publishers, journalists and other experts from the industry from all over the world in attendance. This years focus was on the emerging world of digital publishing.
Underlying this focus is the perception that a change from paper to electronic books is approaching.
In the UK, electronic book sales make up about 5% of the market, whereas in the United States, it is up to 10%, with Amazon US stating that it sold more e-books for its Kindle device than paperback books in the last three months of 2010. This, combined with the the pressure put on independent booksellers by giants like Amazon, Google and Apple, means that publishers of all kinds are having to adapt quickly to this changing market.
North Highland Publishing was fortunate to attend seminars on self-publishing, electronic publishing, marketing of Ebooks and many other seminars while at the Book Fair.
The most insightful Masterclass was delivered from Acorn Independent Press - a brother and sister team who specialise in self publishing - who discussed how the recession and technological advancements had made an impact on the World that is known as self publishing and explained the boom in authors who are self publishing.
And with known "marketing gurus" like Seth Godin opting out of traditional routes to publish, this comes as no real shock or surprise that the demand for self publishing has risen. Seth made an interesting point on his blog about traditional publishers by saying;
"I honestly can't think of a single traditional book publisher who has led the development of a successful marketplace/marketing innovation in the last decade."
As far as I can deduce self publishing (and more so electronic publishing) is the innovation; it is current to technological advancements and how customers interact with technology and it allows the author to control what services and products they would like to use for publishing, promoting and selling their book; from electronic publishing, to hard back and POD (print on demand) the options seem far more catered to individuals who have, not unreasonably, individual needs and wants when it comes to publishing their books.
As demand increases for self-publishing, it will be interesting to watch the shift between traditional and self publishing, especially for first time authors who may otherwise be chewed up and spat out in the big conglomerate publishing house.
Check out our FACEBOOK to see the rest of the London Book Fair photographs.