Sunday, December 21, 2014

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NY1 teams with contributors from The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, New York Magazine, and Essence Magazine to review the latest books and book-related trends.

The Book Reader: Hugh Howey's "Wool" & Self-Published E-Books

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Andrew Losowsky of The Huffington Post reports for NY1 on newly released book titles and the world of publishing in "The Book Reader."

We live in an age where bookstores are in trouble, big publishers are struggling and Amazon forces everyone's prices and profits down. In other words, a really difficult time to work in the book industry. But thanks to the internet and the rise of e-books, this is a great time to be a reader. And also a writer.

Though no precise figures exist, it seems likely that more than 100,000 e-books were self-published last year. Most of them, it has to be said, are terrible, and nobody buys them. But a select few not only gain large followings but also lead to professional book and even movie deals.

One of these, "Wool" by Hugh Howey, has been optioned for a movie by Ridley Scott, and comes out in hardcover from Simon and Schuster on March 12.

This isn't the first time this has happened. "Fifty Shades Of Grey" was first self-published online, as was a version of the new book "Beautiful Bastard." These authors were already successful but took publishing deals to get access to real-world bookstores, receive money up front and be given editing and marketing support.

However, self-publishing empowers authors in new ways. Writers can publish immediately, get detailed sales figures, be part of online communities, and have ultimate control of every decision.

These writers are pushing back at how publishing is supposed to work and are forcing it to change from the bottom up. In the elusive hunt for eyeballs, everything is now up for grabs. This is a great time to be a reader.

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