|Study: Self-publishing explodes to unprecedented levels|
|Written by Jeremy Burns|
|Friday, 18 October 2013 10:00 AM EDT|
A new Bowker study has shown that self-publishing has expanded exponentially, with e-books eating up significant market share.
More than 391,000 self-published titles were released in 2012, an increase of 59% over 2011 and 422% over 2007, according to the study. E-books continue to gain on print, comprising 40% of the ISBNs that were self-published in 2012, up from just 11% in 2007.
“The most successful self-publishers don’t view themselves as writers only, but as business owners,” said Beat Barblan, Bowker’s director of identifier services. “They invest in their businesses, hiring experts to fill skill gaps, and that’s building a thriving new service infrastructure in publishing.”
The analysis shows the growing prominence of a handful of companies that offer publishing services to individual authors. More than 80% of self-published titles came to market with support from just eight companies, including Smashwords and CreateSpace.
Bowker’s research on self-publishing includes surveys of authors that provide insight into where the market is going. Those who intend to self-publish most often plan to bring fiction to market, followed by inspirational or spiritual works, books for children and biographies.
The majority of self-published authors cite finding a traditional publisher as an obstacle. They also feel challenged by marketing—a hurdle that becomes bigger with increasing numbers of books competing for space in the market.