In the digital age, a complex network of technology (ebooks and tablets, user tracking software, online platforms, ebookshops, blogs, and print-on-demand services) and social media (e-bookshops and book blogs) have changed the way that books are produced.
All members of the publishing industry are affected by this change: authors, publishers, editors and designers, printers and marketers, booksellers, and readers, reviewers.
Many of the presentations focused on the role independent publishers play in the evolving publishing ecosystem.
Independent presses enrich the publishing ecosystem just as fungi do at the base of trees. Tiia Monto
Susan Hawthorne drew inspiration from her new book Bibliodiversity: A Manifesto For Independent Publishing. Hawthorne compares independent presses with the fungus rings that grow around trees’ bases, feeding the literary ground and maintaining cultural diversity. Her biodiverse ecosystem is a complex, autonomous system for publishing and writing.
Social networks, despite the current ambivalence towards book trailers or blog tours are important for connecting authors with readers.
Online retailers can be predatory to small publishers. Khendon
Murray, like many others speakers, warned about the predatory relationship that exists between online retailers and smaller publishers. , the of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, had instructed to “approach small publishers like a cheetah pursues a sickly gazell”. This was originally called the Gazelle project, but Amazon’s lawyers changed it to the Small Publishers Negotiation Program.
Authors are increasingly interested in self-publishing. Authors with a following can use print-on-demand services to publish their book, and they can also promote it and increase sales using their online networks. This publishing model, however, takes the authors away from what they do best: writing. This model also assumes that authors are willing to interact with the messy digital ecosystem. It may be the online marketing management that keeps authors coming back to publishing houses.
In the midst of all the excitement about digital marketing, a panel discussion on digital workflows shows that digital publishing has its own set of issues. Manage workflows and archive digital publications and drafts.
One day, I tried to insert a CD in my computer. It turns out it does not have a CD drive. For me to access the files on a CD, I need an external CD drive. You may also find that the software you need to open the files no longer works with your new operating system.
It is a nuisance for me but it highlights a growing issue for libraries who have a legal obligation to collect cultural material and archive it.
Will the digital publications that we have been rushing to create in the near future be readable and accessible? Will libraries be in a position to archive these works and make them available for future readers? Sarah JH Fletcher provided a clear and concise overview of the digital workflow, as well as some sage advice. Always consider the complexity (is it worthwhile?) of the content before creating a digital publication. Consider the complexity of the content (is it worth doing?) and its end use. ).
The National Library enhanced ebook containing material related to Patrick White’s novel Voss is one digital publication that I am eager to have in my hands. The project, which has taken four years, will include manuscript notes and musical scores for the Opera version. You can even listen to music White heard while writing.