Thursday, May 01, 2008

Collective Graphomania

Rachel Donadio in the New York Times finds that while readership is shrinking alarmingly, the US is suffering from a "collective graphomania".

Everyone wants to write! :
In 2007, a whopping 400,000 books were published or distributed in the United States, up from 300,000 in 2006, according to the industry tracker Bowker, which attributed the sharp rise to the number of print-on-demand books and reprints of out-of-print titles. University writing programs are thriving, while writers’ conferences abound, offering aspiring authors a chance to network and “workshop” their work. The blog tracker Technorati estimates that 175,000 new blogs are created worldwide each day (with a lucky few bloggers getting book deals). And the same N.E.A. study found that 7 percent of adults polled, or 15 million people, did creative writing, mostly “for personal fulfillment.”
Print-on demand has really exploded :
IUniverse, a self-publishing company founded in 1999, has grown 30 percent a year in recent years; it now produces 500 titles a month and has 36,000 titles in print ... Other self-publishing outfits report similar growth. Xlibris, a print-on-demand operation, has 20,000 titles in print, by more than 18,000 authors ...
Then there's also the exponential growth of creative writing courses :
The Association of Writers and Writing Programs represented 13 programs when it was founded in 1967. Now it includes 465 full-fledged courses of study, and creative writing classes are offered at most of the 2,400 college English departments in North America.
It's never been easier to be an author, in the US, it seems. As long as you're not too bothered about readers!


Baronhawk said...

Power to be published,
power to the published!

@baronhawk rambling

Sufian said...

Hi Sharon, sorry for the OT.

I've got a few more pictures of Kunal, but the one on my flicker is the only one i like. I'll send you a few next week...

bibliobibuli said...

thanks sufian. i'll see what jason says about a photo too.

Anonymous said...

That's what I said so long ago, remember ? it's easy to be published in the US, it's just not easy to make money writing :)