What's your prediction for publishing in 2012?
I've been musing on what I think will happen in publishing this year. A handful of publications have asked me for some sort of prediction (and I swear I don't have the gift of prophecy), so it's forced me to consider the future. Everything I read seems to suggest something along the lines of "e-books, e-books, and more e-books." But I think that's obvious — the equivalent of saying, "The Yankees will play a lot of baseball games this year" or "it will rain a lot in Oregon."
Besides the advancement of e-books into our lives, what do you think will really happen this year? What trends? What changes with companies? What changes with finances? What industry changes?
Thomas Umstattd, the CEO at Umstattd Media and Author Tech, invited me to participate in a sort of online salon, discussing the changes some of us expect to see. My first thought? I think the major publishing houses will regain control of e-books.
2011 has been a boon for self-publishers and e-book publishers. We've seen dozens of new companies created, sometimes by one guy in his spare bedroom. Everyone loved seeing all the new product, and many of the new kids on the block did well. But… that's about to change considerably. The traditional publishing houses may have been late to the party, but they have the money, staff, and marketing & sales know-how to make e-books work. And while they're going to have to change their traditional publishing model a bit, I think they are going to start doing a great job of selling e-books and recapturing the ground that was lost. Look for all the major houses to re-gain control of the e-book wars, and begin shifting their publishing models and their economic plans to better reflect the new world of book commerce. Frankly, I think a lot of the little e-book houses that were fast out of the gate will find themselves squeezed out, bought out, or spent out of existence.
Umstattd's article is interesting, by the way, and you can find it over on the Author Media site: http://tinyurl.com/75hptmf
What's your prediction for 2012?