Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Book Sales - Bucking the National Trend

It's been awhile since anyone around here has blogged, tweeted, or facebooked. All of us have been hard at work preparing Lee Anderson's forthcoming Developing the Art of Equine Communication for upload to our printer! (Photo by Allen Patrou)

So, here's our latest!


Nationally, it looks like the sale of "paper" books is plummeting, and plummeting in just about all categories. Most people who are into technology are probably not too surprised by this. Ebooks are currently all the rage among the reading public. (The following is from Moonlight Mesa's monthly newsletter.)

According to GalleyCat, an online publisher daily newsletter, sales of paper books are reported to be generally down and,you guessed it, sales of e-books have skyrocketed over the past year.

GalleyCat claims the only two categories that saw an increase in book sales were E-Books with an increase of 123.4%, and the All Religious category, which had a rise of 8.9%.

In 2011 adult hardcover sales dropped a staggering 18.9% from 2010. Adult paperbacks did not fare much better, falling 16%. Overall, the adult mass market fell 35.4%. Even Children’s/YA paperbacks fell 6.08%.

Interestingly, physical audio books fell 9.4%, while downloadable audio books rose 25.9%.

So, what’s that tell everyone? One might believe that if a publisher/author doesn’t have his or her work available as an E-book, they are losing out on a rather lucrative market. However, this is only vaguely true, if true at all. Apparently only very few e-book authors sell more than $100 worth of their book(s) in a month.

What should it tell a publisher/author instead? It should be as clear as the print on this page that writing a book, or publishing one, is not the easy road to riches. Maybe painting, or pottery, or weaving would be more lucrative.Still, a man’s gotta do what a man’s gotta do…and so does a woman!!


Desite the national trend mentioned above, Moonlight Mesa, Western Book Publisher, enjoyed strong sales in 2011 even though several of the publisher's book events were total duds. Revenues for 2011 matched 2010, the publisher's best year ever, and so far 2012 is off to a sizzling start.

Moonlight Mesa participated in two events in February and had record sales at both events. The company's next big event is Mule Days in Bishop, CA. over Memorial Day weekend. Unless sky-rocketing gas prices keep people home, the publisher expects great sales there also.


The third book in Jere D. James' trilogy, Canyon of Death, will soon be available in a large print edition. "Both Saving Tom Black and Apache, books one and two of the trilogy, are available in large print, and they are selling," the publisher said. "We'll get Canyon of Death out there next."

Publisher Becky Coffield expects to have Jere D. James' fourth book in print by the end of 2012. "Well, the book must be written first, but I think the book will be ready for us in time to get it out in 2012. We've already had requests for it," Coffield said. "Jere is doing A LOT of research for this book, I know that."

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