Sunday, August 16, 2020

Writing and the Industry in the New World

 Not more than a week has past in the last months when someone has mentioned, "the new normal."

Will we be wearing masks to buy groceries in January?  Will kids go back to school this year?  Will the Big Box stores take over the hardest hit smaller businesses?

I have no idea.

But I do think about how this all has impacted writing, publishing, and reading.  My outlook has been pretty grim because I see libraries shut down and small bookshops closing.  On the other hand, here are a couple of articles that have pretty positive points.

Although many businesses are open, the Corona Times have turned many people to books.  This article from The Observer (Fall 2020 Book Forecast) describes the progression of books through the last months: starting with craft and workbooks, then lots of cookbooks, on to fiction, and then books with complex racial and cultural issues.

The end "forecast" for the fall is for identity-seeking books, complex female characters, or closed societies.  Diverse, complex stuff.

Funny, I thought the world we live in is too complex with too much conflict.  My thinking is people read to escape, and anything too complex or challenging will be avoided--generally.

Here's another interesting read: Trends Transforming the Publishing Industry.  Some of this is no surprise: digital marketing, SEO, and visuals are more important than ever.  

Couple of surprises from this article:

1)  Podcasting is growing.  Writers need to use this.

2)  Print is just as important as ever.

3)  Self-publishing is doing pretty good (17 of the top 100 on Kindle are self-published--WOW).

As awful as 2020 has been so far, this world has seen some good things in all this.  Stimulus checks are one.  Binge-watching is another.  

Now, with people reading more and the internet becoming more intrinsic to our lives, this could be a tremendous opportunity for writers to self-publish our books about diverse, complex stuff.  

Maybe now is the time that I finish my millionth revision of that novel, the one with the closed society and complex women seeking their identities....