“Publishing Isn’t Broken”

March 23, 2009 Writing Comments (1) 296

From Jane Smith at How Publishing Really Works, a pretty nifty blog for us writer types:

Publishing is a business, and publishers have responsibilities to their shareholders to run their businesses as profitably as possible.  That means they have to publish books with a good potential for turning a profit: which means the books which aren’t going to need too much work to turn them into decent sellers. And this means that not all writers are going to be good enough to make the grade.

I suppose it shouldn’t be strange to think that so many writers perceive an obligation on the part of the publisher to serve the writer, but it is.  In my time spent trying (thus far unsuccessfully) to get a novel published, it’s never occurred to me that the publisher has any obligation to me – they are in business to make money, just as I am.

It seems to me some pretty basic business principles.  I just wonder how many writers really don’t understand this.

One Response to :
“Publishing Isn’t Broken”

  1. Jane Smith says:

    In my experience, many new or unpublished writers are surprised by publishing’s focus on business matters: they forget that publishers can’t stay in business without selling books to readers, and assume that they exist only to publish writers (namely, them). Until writers get over this misunderstaning they’re limiting their chances of publication quite severely.

    (Thank you for linking to my blog: it’s most appreciated.)

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