Some interesting statistics:
1/3 of high school graduates never read another book for the rest of their lives.
42 percent of college graduates never read another book after college.
80 percent of U.S. families did not buy or read a book last year.
[From the site: HotForWords.]
With all the evolutions in how people consume entertainment and information, the delivery channels of journalism, literature and other forms of writing are also changing. Writers need to be more entrepreneurial.
One medium for both fiction and non-fiction writing is audiobooks. A press release from the Audio Publishers Association last year said “More than one-third of adult respondents (37%) have listened to an audiobook.”
According to a recent Los Angeles Times article, the publisher Audible is “the largest producer and seller of digital audio books, issuing more than 1,000 titles a year.
Audible chief executive Donald Katz says his company is “one of the few growth sectors in acting these days” because of the demand for narrators. The article notes the audiobook series debuting early next year – tentatively called “Project A List” – features book narrators including Dustin Hoffman, Kate Winslet, Colin Firth, Nicole Kidman, Samuel L. Jackson, Anne Hathaway, Annette Bening and Susan Sarandon.
Katz “began his career as a writer, serving as a contributing editor at Rolling Stone and Outside while penning award-winning books…At New York University, he studied under novelist Ralph Ellison, whom he credits for helping him grasp that the oral storytelling tradition, from campfire tales to blues laments, is the definitive American literature.”
[From The new talkies: Audible is ready for its Hollywood close-up, By Patrick Goldstein, Los Angeles Times, September29, 2011.]
Learn more about their wide range of audiobooks and try it free at Audible.com
Apparently, the opportunities for writing for newspapers or magazines, or crafting a novel or non-fiction book and getting an advance and marketing support from a publishing house, are fast becoming rare or historical.
But there are many resources for self-publishing, such as Amazon’s CreateSpace, for authors, filmmakers and musicians.
A valuable source of help and encouragement I found was the training provided by Shelley Hitz, the “Self Publishing Coach” – an entrepreneur, speaker, author and consultant. A profile notes some of the opportunities for writer-entrepreneurs: “Over a two year span, while working full-time, she self published five books, multiple audio CDs, authored two websites that attract thousands of visitors each month, and created multiple products that she sells through her website and at her speaking engagements.”
Learn more about her programs and free materials for writers in her article (with video) on my Inner Writer site: How to Self Publish a Book.
[Photo: Marilyn Monroe reading “Death of a Salesman”]
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Last reviewed: 3 Oct 2011