April 7th, 2008

PC keyboard

Book format vs. publishing business model

Buried in the NY Times article about HarperCollins new "no advances, no returns" imprint (I blogged about this last week) is this quote:

"The group, Ms. Friedman said, would release electronic, audio and hardcover editions for every title it publishes. Currently, HarperCollins does not produce e-books or audio editions of every title. The publisher has so far converted about 3,000 titles into e-books, she said, while globally, it has about 25,000 physical editions in print.

Mr. Miller said he was considering offering both e-book and audio editions with the hardcovers automatically, at no additional cost to the consumer."

To me, this may be as important a development as the change in the marketing model. When you combine it with what will presumably be smaller print runs, it suggests that HarperCollins actually sees a major shift coming in the way books are sold.