The publishing industry has witnessed significant changes over the past few years thanks mostly to the Internet. Consumer behavior has drastically shifted from offline consumption of news and information to online consumption. As a result, traditional publishers such as newspapers have been labeled "dead" and more and more bookstores are closing their doors.
Has the way you obtain news and information changed in recent years? Let us know.
Self-publishing is another trend that has occurred as a result of these changes. Not only can people self-publish content on blogs and websites, but they can also bypass traditional book publishers and write books on their own. In the past, these "gatekeepers" would dictate what could and couldn't be written and who could do it and who couldn't. However, the dynamic has changed.
"Because of technology and the Internet, now anyone can go out there and take their own content and put it online and have it on Amazon and have it up in a bunch of other places in 24 hours or less," said Jim Kukral, the CEO of Digital Book Launch.
"The gatekeepers are crumbling a little bit," he added.
Kukral actually had a book called Attention! This Book Will Make You Money published traditionally last year. But, through the long and tedious experience, he realized that he, or anyone else, didn't need a book publisher to publish a book.
"All the things that needed to make the book a success, I was really in control of," he pointed out.
As he explained to WebProNews, writers can find freelance editors and people to create book covers. They don't need a book deal because they can do it on their own, as he did.
Kukral has actually taken self-publishing to a new level by also pre-funding books before they're even written. It sounds bizarre, but it has worked. He wanted to write a series of books about creating a lifestyle around a business, which is what he has done for himself.
He launched a campaign and asked people to pledge amounts ranging from $10-$10,000, and they responded. Kukral was essentially able to pre-sale the books before they were even written. The campaign has been live for around a month and has already raised over $20,000.
The people that have made pledges of over $100 receive recognition in the "Acknowledgement" section of the book. In addition, they get a copy of the book and get updates as it is written. Kukral said that it encourages engagement and makes them "part of a creative process."
He went on to say that he would likely end the fund-raising at the end of this month but that he plans to do similar campaigns in the future.
In terms of traditional publishing, Kukral doesn't think that the industry is dead.
"Newspapers aren't gonna die," he said. "Radio, television - they're not gonna die. They're just changing."
He pointed out that the industry would have to adjust its model in order to stay relevant, which means that it will be even harder for a writer to get his book published traditionally. For this reason, he is a firm believer in this self-publishing trend and encourages others in this way as well.
"There are so many great things that happen for your brand and for your business when you put a book out there - it's amazing," he added.
What do you think about the rise of self-publishing?
WebProNews is partnering with BlogWorld and New Media Expo, the world’s first and largest new media conference, in an effort to broadcast how new media can grow your business, brand, and audience. BlogWorld takes place November 3-5 in Los Angeles and includes speakers such as Jim Kukral. Stay tuned to WebProNews for much more exclusive coverage.