Widbook Noted as Game Changer in Publishing Industry
In today’s mega-paced, technology-focused world, nearly everything is going virtual – and the book industry is no different. Thus, it’s no surprise that According to Pricewaterhouse Coopers’ annual analysis “Entertainment & Media Outlook,” the ebook industry will be bigger than the print book market by 2017 and ebooks will drive $8.2 billion in sales by then, while print book sales are suspected to decrease by more than 50 percent during that timeframe.
Publishing industry veteran and expert Fred Kobrak agrees that book publishing is undergoing unprecedented changes. Kobrak, who worked for publishing giant Macmillan for 35 years, both in international sales and eventually as the president of Collier Macmillan, then went on to work for Thomson Book Publishing for a decade, believes that Facebook and other online marketing capabilities are largely the reason for the industry movement from traditional publishing to self-publishing.
“It’s changing now completely. There’s no point in submitting manuscripts or even finished books to a publisher,” Kobrak explained, nothing that no publisher can possibly look at that the nearly quarter of a million new manuscripts that are submitted annually in the U.S. alone, and decide which 10 or 15 are of the best quality.
Kobrak, who caught up recently with Widbook at BookExpo America*, the largest annual book trade fair in the United States, calls Widbook’s online publishing platform aimed at improving writing, encouraging collaboration and offering writers a better position in the industry “a very good idea,” and thinks it’s the best self-publishing platform he’s seen that was created outside of the U.S.
Kobrak believes Widbook will experience accelerated growth from its already notably thriving status and looks forward to meeting again at October’s Frankfurt Book Fair, the world’s largest trade fair for books, of which he is considered a veteran: he is a 53-consecutive-year attendee. He said it can be difficult to find quality ebooks today, and thinks Widbook’s platform offers a unique opportunity for writers to improve their content by networking with other likeminded individuals and collaborating on work.
What does all of this mean for the book publishing industry, as well as authors and aspiring authors? Experts say self-publishing has seen triple-digit growth in five years, indicating that the days of grueling over the traditional publishing process – finding a literary agent, preparing a manuscript, submitting a letter to publishers and practicing loads of patience and perseverance – may be going to the wayside as the future of book publishing catapults forward virtually.
* Widbook’s presence at BookExpo America caused quite a stir – David Finkle, Huffington Post writer and drama critic, also highlighted Widbook in his roundup of BEA. You can read his nice article here.