The Future of Christian Publishing?

Via Energion author David Alan Black, I found The Next Chapter for Christian Publishing. I’m less than enthusiastic about those predicting the future, having heard too many times that we were done with new inventions, or that some particular thing could never happen, only to see the pace of new inventions continue and the supposedly impossible happen.

I’m also very skeptical of stories of the golden days. The golden days are usually just far enough in the past that the speaker has forgotten the bad things. In my previous golden days I longed to do what I’m doing right now!

But this CT article is quite right. Publishing will continue. The media and the strategy will change, but we will still publish. Will the physical items we publish be properly called books, or will they be something else entirely? I believe that we are only at the beginning of the change to electronic media for publishing. Many more changes are coming.

I’m going to comment on one thing in the article. There are those who bemoan the requirement that authors have a platform. I’m not one of them. I have started telling authors that there I must not only believe there book should be read, but that I must believe I can get people to read it. If it doesn’t sell, nothing really has been accomplished.

As a small publisher, the majority of my authors are not well known. They have skills. Many are excellent writers. They have something to say. Unfortunately, nobody knows who they are. If there writing is to have impact, people are going to have to find out about them. They need a reputation. In the modern world, that means a platform at a minimum. If a publisher requires you to do interviews, be delighted. I get less than 1% of the interviews I’d like to get for my authors.

Publicity is part of a writer’s job. That isn’t going to change very quickly. Authors and publishers will have to live with it.

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