Friday, February 18, 2011

The Future of Publishing

Hey all,

Just wanted to take a quick moment to point you to this post at McSweeney's. Basically, it argues that publishing isn't in as much trouble as is popularly assumed. Their evidence is interesting and it's worth going through the whole of their article (especially the three links in the middle) to see what they're talking about.

I'm a bit believer in the power of the internet. What I mean by this is that the internet is not reality, but has an effect on reality that cannot be denied. Look at the dissemination of information about the problems in Egypt or at the tracking of celebrities on gossip blogs. That being said, the internet has the power also to put blinders onto the eyes of otherwise rational people; claims can be made in a vacuum and statistics (my old friend) can be warped to "prove" whatever point you're trying to make.

So I'm going to take with a grain of salt McSweeney's analysis. But that's not to say I'm not hopeful it's true. Obviously, as a writer I have more than a little stake in the future of books. And I agree that things cannot be as dire as the media reports insist that they are because I know people, lots of people, who are passionate about books (whether e-books or print books), and the written word isn't going anywhere anytime soon.


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