PBS Anchor Admits Book Industry Is In 'Transition'
If you want to write the next great American novel, you could have a tough go of it considering the current situation in publishing.
‚ÄúWell, this is what is called a transition time, meaning they‚Äôre not doing very well right now,‚ÄĚ Lehrer said. ‚ÄúThere are a lot of books being published. Too many books are being published. As I tell people all the time, I wish a whole of people would quit writing ‚Äėem and just start buying ‚Äėem and reading ‚Äėem.‚ÄĚ
So what is bucking the trend? According to Lehrer, nonfiction books are doing well, particularly books like former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan‚Äôs book, ‚ÄúThe Age of Turbulence,‚ÄĚ which has been a fixture on The New York Times Bestsellers List for the previous 10 weeks.
Fiction on the other hand is struggling.
‚ÄúFiction is not doing well, except pulp fiction,‚ÄĚ Lehrer said. ‚ÄúPulp fiction is doing very well. Kind of what you‚Äôd called mid-list fiction is not doing well. Serious literary fiction ‚Äď some of it does well ‚Äď whatever. Stuff that is making money apart from the publishers are these huge, blockbuster, nonfiction, ‚Äúlet-me-tell-you-how-I-got-be-famous-and-how-important-I-am‚ÄĚ books. You know, these are the 8 million, 5 million [copies] things and they usually make their money on subsidiary rights, not on the hardback, but on the softback and the international sales and all of that,‚ÄĚ said Lehrer.