Thursday, September 4, 2008

Statistics – Publishing Growth

by Raelene Gorlinsky

Wow, how the world of U.S. Publishing has grown in half a century! The information below comes from The Culture and Commerce of Publishing in the 21st Century by Greco, Rodríguez & Wharton, Standford University Press, ©2007.

[I'm not recommending you get this book. It is deadly dull -- pages upon pages of statistical charts, overly lengthy and obtuse market analysis, and boring writing. And it barely mentions POD ("too new" to evaluate) or e-books (claims they have no future).]

1947:
648 - U.S. publishing firms
$435.1 million - total revenues (Bowker)
9182 - total new titles
1307 - new fiction hardcover titles
$2.66 – average retail price of fiction hardcover
$0.25 – price of mass market paperback

2005:
3500+ - U.S. publishing firms (U.S. Dept. of Commerce, Census Bureau)
[R.R. Bowker, issuer of U.S. ISBNS, says 81,000+]
$27.7 billion - net publisher book revenues (Book Industry Study Group)
200,000+ - total new titles for the year
25,184 – new fiction hardcover titles
$27.52 – average retail price for fiction hardcover
$6.79 – average price for mass market paperbacks

Wow, I can't even envision a world where there were only nine thousand new books released in a year! Of course, I'd really like to be able to pay only twenty-five cents for a paperback book. And I might be able to afford hardcovers at that 1947 price.

2 comments:

krisyankee said...

Wow- interesting stuff! Thanks for sharing.

Anny Cook said...

I have some paperbacks that are printed with a 35 cent price on them. The fonts were larger, but the cover artwork was terrible!