As Christine said, my statements were aimed Mark, who stated that trade publishing is unsustainable, yet gave no concrete proof to back that up. He's an author...not a publisher, so his comments aren't based on any kind of experience with mainstream publishing, but opinion. Opinion doesn't sell books.Huh? I have an ebook, though not with Mundania. Did I suddenly lose all knowledge of the publishing industry just because I decided to take a book down the ebook route?
That doesn't make any sense at all. Priceless, you are smarter than that statement.
Mark, that you're a Mundania author puts you in a category of someone who is unable to determine what types of publishing is sustainable.
Actually, I've found that many POD authors are undereducated about the publishing industry. I see this all the time at writer's conferences, and have talked with many a sad or angry author because they didn't know any better before signing with a POD. They felt cheated and fooled. Sorry, but a POD author is not in the position to make judgments about whether trade publishing isn't viable because he simply has no idea of how it works. POD isn't standard publishing, so he has a skewed perspective.Perhaps you were just talking to Mundania authors, but that statement isn't aimed solely at Mark.
As I said, you are smarter than that Priceless. Don't aim at all Mundania authors or all ebook authors just because some don't know how publishing works. I'm sure some Random House authors don't understand it either.
Perhaps what you meant was that experience being a Mundania author doesn't give him expertise in publishing, but that's not what you said.
Sigh...yes, I'm aware there are exceptions everywhere and authors go with PODs for any number of reasons. I have no problem with that provided they are aware of what PODs can and can't do for them. I'm aware that there are many savvy e-pubbed and POD authors as well. I am talking in generalities - not the average AW'er.As an FYI, not all e-pubbed authors are undereducated about the publishing industry. I would speculate that you can find several extremely knowledgable ebook authors on this forum who have studied all aspects of the industry, even to the point of understanding current marketing trends and perhaps even the processes required in the 'real' market. Generalized sweeping statements like this tar a whole lot of AW writers with the same brush. Not only is that unjustified, but it is inaccurate as well.
So it's highly doubtful that the perspective of an e-book or POD author carries much weight because they aren't a part of that world.
Actually, I've found that many POD authors are...
Having few choices justifies a poor choice? I'm not seeing the logic here, John. Not all manuscripts should be published, and that's my main problem with vanity and POD; they create an air of entitlement, that everyone deserves to see their work in print. Well, no they don't, and it's called the marketplace. It's called quality.
wouldn't that mean that ANYTHING being printed is bad?
so everything should be an ebook - less waste, right?
No one is more aware of the purpose of this forum than I. My original remark was aimed at Mark who said:Then as a gentle reminder, I would point out that the purpose of this forum is to educate and inform writers who may not share the same level of knowledge as you or me or any of the other regular posters. Therefore, comments like this...accomplish neither of those goals and can be construed as insulting instead of instructive.
The standard model of publishing- with its guesswork overprinting, inefficient delivery methods and massive returns- is not sustainable.
As I keep repeating, my initial comments were aimed at Mark for their lack of foundation. I, again, apologize to one and all for feeling I was attacking all e-pubbed and POD authors. That is the last thing I would ever do. I was trying to make a point, albeit poorly as it turns out, that Mark has less opportunity to see how mainstream publishing works because that isn't how Mundania works.There's a huge difference between "many" and "all." Furthermore, dismissing what someone has to say because they went PoD or with ePublishing is downright stupid.
But I'll own up to my own mistake. I guess you weren't as smart as I had you figured.
Do you have a recommendation about what publishers should do when a PO comes in for 5,000 units? Should we tell B&N sorry, no can do because we want to save the environment? How does that get books into readers' hands?I was using sustainable in an environmental context. There are far better business practices possible that if not carbon neutral, at least leave a much smaller carbon footprint than current industry practices.
I agree with you 1,000 percent on this. I would love nothing more than to send out ARCs electronically. The problem is most reviewers don't accept them. Since I'm in the business to make money, this isn't a viable option.ARCs delivered electronically instead of hundreds printed out and mailed would be just one example. That's a small thing to be sure, but if all publishers did that, the result would be a significant reduction in pollution and greenhouse gases.
It's because for many years the PODs have been using the overtired "we're saving trees" mantra in order to explain why they don't do print runs. in reality, it has little to do with saving trees, but that they can't afford to do print runs. It's an excuse, not a justification.Not once in your most recent diatribe against PODs did you even mention the environment, when the entire purpose of my post was to raise the issue. Apparently, you either didn't notice or chose to read something else into my "shopworn" mantra.
I see the other side of the coin where authors have no idea about the fact that no print runs equals few sales. I've heard stories about authors who scheduled events only to have to cancel because the store couldn't get the books in because they hadn't been printed in time. So while the POD is being environmentally healthy, the author is suffering in sales. They've promoted with no product. Seems counterproductive to the business, don't you think?As for PODs, I don't know if they're the wave of the future or just a current blip on the book industry's radar screen, but printing a book on demand is still more environmentally sensitive than book returns in any amount.
I'm all for challenging anything, but my first obligation is to my authors and to my company. I'm in the business to sell books, so it strikes me as odd not to print enough to meet demand. Come up with a viable option that puts books on store shelves and saves trees, and I'll be happy to listen. There are green printing techniques right now, but they're a lot more expensive and drives up the retail costs. It's easy to make demands when you're not the one writing the checks. Find us a better way that is cost effective, and we'll listen.These wasteful practices you seem so eager to defend are indeed "the way it's always been done," but that doesn't mean we can't challenge them and seek a much more responsible way of doing business.
Come up with a viable option that puts books on store shelves and saves trees, and I'll be happy to listen. There are green printing techniques right now, but they're a lot more expensive and drives up the retail costs. It's easy to make demands when you're not the one writing the checks. Find us a better way that is cost effective, and we'll listen.
This is the most intelligent thing you've posted all day.
Nice of you to finally admit that the publishing industry has environmental issues that need to be addressed.
It'll happen, but expect to walk into Borders or B&N tomorrow and find a POD machine on the premisies. When that day comes, the revolution may well be upon us. Until then, offset print runs will rule.
Even if paper books are extinct, the POD business model (not the technology or medium) is one that is not sustainable in mass market. Traditional publishers do print-on-demand and e-books, too, but it's their business practices and processes that are tried and true: editing, design, marketing, distribution, etc. So even if the whole industry goes green, a successful publisher still has to deal with all that effectively.