Are Book Sales on the Decline?

I have a real job. Yes, believe it or not, I don’t just sit around all day living the lives of my imaginary people. Shocking, I know. Yes, I have an actual job where I leave home every morning to go work for someone else and I come home at the same time every night. I fight rush hour and have more than one boss. Do I want to write instead? Absolutely. I’d gladly trade my eight to five job for ten hours of sitting at my computer clicking away at the latest story. The problem, of course, is that I have bills to pay. Oh yes, and children. Lots and lots of children. They like to eat… and argue. So even if I didn’t have to feed them, the chances of me sitting at my computer and clicking away at keys for ten hours is simply never going to happen until they all move away.

 

I know there are lots of other people out there who have the same desire to get lost in a good novel whether they are writing it or reading it. No matter which end of the spectrum you are, I thought I would share the Association of America Publishers sales reports for the month of December. You can read the whole article here: http://www.publishers.org/Dec08stats.htm

 

Oh, did I mention that in my real job, I’m an accountant? I have this ‘thing’ for numbers…

 

Check out the increase in ebook sales compared to the changes in the other categories. So what does this really mean?

For Immediate Release

Contact: Tina Jordan
212/255-0200 ext. 263
tjordan@publishers.org

AAP Reports Publishing Sales for Month of December

February 12, 2009, New York, NY: Book sales tracked by the Association of American Publishers (AAP) for the month of December increased by 9.7 percent at $1.5 billion but were down by 2.4 percent for the year.

The Adult Hardcover category was down by 10.3 percent in December with sales of $113.3 million; year-to-date sales were down by 13.0 percent.

Adult Paperback sales increased 12.5 percent for the month ($132.8 million) and increased by 3.6 percent for the year.

The Adult Mass Market category was down 8.3 percent for December with sales totaling $73.7 million; sales were also down by 3.0 percent year-to-date.

The Children’s/YA Hardcover category jumped up 124.6 percent for the month with sales of $115.1 million, although sales for year-to-date were down by 12.4 percent.

The Children’s/YA Paperback category was also up by 37.0 percent in December with sales totaling $54.4 million; sales increased by 6.4 percent for the year.

Audio Book sales posted a decrease of 11.7 percent in December with sales totaling $10.5 million; sales for the whole year were down by 21.0 percent.

E-books sales jumped up by 119.9 percent for the month ($6.5 million), reflecting an increase of 68.4 percent for the year.

Religious Books saw an increase of 3.5 percent for the month with sales totaling $49.3 million; sales were down by 7.6 percent for the year.

Sales of University Press Hardcover books were up 5.4 percent in December with sales of $7.1 million; sales decreased by 7.9 percent for the year. University Press Paperback sales posted a decrease of 3.8 percent for the month with sales totaling $9.7 million; sales were down 8.2 percent for the year.Sales in the Professional and Scholarly category were up by 11.4 percent in December ($110.3 million) and decreased by 0.5 percent for the year.

Higher Education publishing sales posted an increase of 5.6 percent for the month ($814.7 million) and increased 2.7 percent for the year.Finally, the net El-Hi (elementary/high school) basal and supplemental K-12 category posted a decrease of 14.4 percent in December with sales of $127.2 million; the category was down by 4.4 percent for the year.

The Association of American Publishers is the national trade association of the U.S. book publishing industry. AAP’smore than300 members include most of the major commercial publishers in the United States, as well as smaller and non-profit publishers, university presses and scholarly societies—small and large. AAP members publish hardcover and paperback books in every field, educational materials for the elementary, secondary, postsecondary, and professional markets, scholarly journals, computer software, and electronic products and services. The protection of intellectual property rights in all media, the defense of the freedom to read and the freedom to publish at home and abroad, and the promotion of reading and literacy are among the Association’s highest priorities.

NOTE: All sales figures cited in this release are domestic net sales

 

Claire Collins is the author of Images of Betrayal and Fate and Destiny

www.secondwindpublishing.com

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