Should Traditional Publishers Feel Threatened by the Potential of Self-Publishing? Dana Beth Weinberg's Presentation at Digital Book World 2014
Should traditional publishers feel threatened by the potential of self-publishing? Of course they should.
As a hybrid author—an author who has both traditionally published and self-published—and a social scientist who studies the book industry, I am something of a two-for-one special at Digital Book World 2014. My remarks draw from both perspectives.
Last week I indie published the first installment in my thriller The Kings of Brighton Beach, a series about the Russian mob in New York. As a non-brand name author, I represent the greatest threat to publishers from self-publishing, or I would if my books were in the same genre. My traditional publications are non-fiction. As a sociologist, I study the relationships between workers and organizations in changing industries and cut my teeth studying healthcare. In healthcare, the issues I’m going to discuss can literally be matters of life and death. Many of you probably feel that way about them in your own organizations (and the thriller writer in me had to throw in a dead body.)
This conference has focused on the changing technologies in publishing, and I am going to focus today on the human equation, specifically the relationship between authors and publishers. While many things have changed in publishing, one thing has not. At base, what publishers do is related to content provided for them by a contract workforce, namely authors. When we think about authors as a contignent labor pool, we open the possibility to consider the similarity between publishing and other industries and learn from them.
For the full summary, visit danabethweinberg.com