We may be in the midst of a journalism revival, but books are getting lost. Readers are spending more time reading news, watching news, and less attention to new books.
This week, the Association of American Published released its final tally of book sales for 2016. Total U.S. publishing industry revenue fell 5.1% over the previous year, though trade sales as a sector posted an 1.5% increase.
According to Andrew Albanese, Publishers Weekly senior writer, big losers were seen in the education and scholarly segments as well as pre-K–12 sales. Altogether, falling sales drove industry revenues lower by over a billion dollars in 2016.
“The lack of a new big book was a key factor in the drop for trade book sales,” Albanese reports. “So, too, was the inability of novelists to get media attention while the broadcast and cable networks covered the 2016 presidential election.
“We may be in the midst of a journalism revival, but books are getting lost here, as readers are spending more time reading news, watching news, and less attention is being paid in the media to new books,” he tells CCC’s Chris Kenneally.
Every Friday, CCC’s “Beyond the Book” speaks with the editors and reporters of “Publishers Weekly” for an early look at the news that publishers, editors, authors, agents and librarians will be talking about when they return to work on Monday.