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Things about books and writing books you perhaps didn’t know

February 28, 2013



Here’s some facts to chew on and consider all you authors and would-be authors out there

The New York Times reported that “According to a recent survey, 81 percent of people feel that they have a book in them…and should write it.” If you do the math, that represents over 200 million people in the U.S. who want to write a book in their lifetime.

– Consumers in the Northeast spend the most on reading materials, while spending is the lowest in the South.

– Sales of religious paperback books represent a significant market share in today’s publishing arena. The new gospel on book sales has spiritual and religious titles crossing over into mainstream bookstores and taking upwards of 7 percent of all book sales.

– Blogs can lead to books. A blog is a great place to flesh out ideas, get reader feedback, and sometimes catch the attention of an agent or publisher.

– Many famous authors and their books were rejected multiple times. Publishers turned down Richard Bach’s Johnathan Livingston Seagull no less than 140 times; Margaret Mitchell’s Gone With the Wind received 38 “no’s,” while Stephen King’s Carrie was turned down 30 times. J. K. Rowling’s original work was pooh-poohed by 12 publishers. And E. E. Cummings first work, The Enormous Room, now considered a masterpiece, was ultimately self-published…and dedicated to the 15 publishers who rejected it.

– One survey showed that 75 percent of 300 booksellers  (half from independent bookstores and half from chains) identified the look and design of the book cover as the most important component. They agreed that the jacket is prime real estate for promoting a book.

-On the average a bookstore browser will spend eight seconds looking at the front cover and 15 seconds scanning the back cover.

– Nonfiction typically outsells fiction by two to one.

– Interest in poetry and drama has grown by more than 33 percent since 1992.

– Women buy 68 percent of all books sold.

– Most readers do not get past page 18 in a book they have purchased.                  

– Sixty-four percent of book buyers say a books being on a bestseller list is not important.                           

– It takes an average of 475 hours to write a novel. Fiction is considered successful if it sells 5,000 copies. Writing a nonfiction book requires about 725 hours. A nonfiction book is deemed successful when it reaches 7,500 copies sold.                                                    

-The largest advance ever paid for a self-published book? A whopping $4.125 million. Simon & Schuster paid that for Richard Paul Evansás The Christmas Box.



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One Comment
  1. Interesting information! Thank you for sharing 🙂

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