The Author as Entrepreneur

Virginia Postrel points to an article in the Washington Post about what it takes to be an author today (hint: entrepreneurial skills help):

“A new book is printed in the United States just about every 20 seconds, according to a company called R.R. Bowker, which compiles the Books in Print database. With profits in the publishing world pretty flat in recent years, big publicity budgets are largely limited to the heavyweights in the writing world, the proven novelists (such as Stephen King) or famous memoirist (such as Bill Clinton). Everyone else gets about $5,000 to $10,000 to promote their title, if they’re lucky. Many get nothing at all.

“Publishers can’t afford to support every title they release, and unless you’re an author they’ve invested a lot in, you’re on your own,” says Jim Milliot, executive editor of Publishers Weekly. “Nearly everyone who publishes a book quickly realizes that if they want to publicize their work, they better take matters into their own hands.”

David St. Lawrence's book Danger Quicksand - Have a Nice DayBook publishing is changing before our very eyes. Because so many publishers do little to promote books, and because of advances in print-on-demand services, more authors are choosing to self-publish.

They are also using blogs to promote their books online — it’s a significant trend we spotted over a year ago.

David St. Lawrence is doing both with his new book, “Danger Quicksand — Have a Nice Day.” His book is about the changing nature of corporate employment and how to protect yourself (including a chapter on starting your own business).

He has chosen to self-publish his book. He’s even run a 12-part series about his self-publishing experience — must reading for anyone who wants to publish a book.

I’m proud to be part of these new and evolving trends by helping David promote his new book here at Small Business Trends.

Anita Campbell Anita Campbell is the Founder, CEO and Publisher of Small Business Trends and has been following trends in small businesses since 2003. She is the owner of BizSugar, a social media site for small businesses.