An Ebook Magic 8 Ball

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Another exciting year for the publishing industry is in the books, so to speak. The ebook and digital publishing landscape changed drastically yet again. In 2012, Amazon and other retailers gained control over ebook pricing at three major publishers, ebook revenue growth hit an inflection point, and a parade of non-book-publishing companies entered the ebook business.
 
Nobody saw it coming. Well, almost nobody. A team of publishing experts predicted in late 2011 some of the astounding developments we saw in 2012 for Digital Book World. See their original predictions here.
 
Seeing as though 2012 is just about over, we’ve gathered more publishing experts to predict what extraordinary events are to come in book publishing in 2013.
 
Read our predictions.


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The rest of the day’s top news:

Urban vs. Rural Ebook Readers (DBW)
Urban, suburban and rural readers have different habits. It may not surprise you to learn that urban readers prefer ebooks compared to others. It might surprise you to learn, however, which group reads most often on tablets.
 
B&N Giving Away Ebooks (paidContent)
Barnes & Noble is getting scrappy with its new power to discount books from publishers like Hachette and HarperCollins. The bookseller is letting a customer gift an ebook to a friend once she’s bought one herself – but only in-store. The company may also be trying to spur ebook giving

Digital 20% of Revenue at Simon & Schuster in 2012 (DBW)
“More than” 20%, to be exact, according to an internal memo that CEO Carolyn Reidy sent to her staff. Reidy also provides numbers on the company’s efforts to reach consumers directly.
 
Digital Profit Down at Scholastic (DBW)
As the effect of The Hunger Games fades and the company makes more investments, digital profits are down. The investments must not be in people because the company announced a hiring freeze and even plans to let some people go.

Macmillan’s New Crowdsourced YA Romance Imprint (PW)
Dubbed Swoon, it will gather manuscripts from the community, which will be read by the community and then edited and polished by the community and then published. The community’s cut of the proceeds? Unclear.
 
Atlantic Media to Publish More Ebooks (DBW)
Atlantic Media, a company anchored by a 150-year-old print magazine, is dipping its toe in the ebook business. It’s quietly published three this year but there are more to come.
 
Managing Rights, Facilitating Workflow, Ramping Marketing (DBW)
Are all things you’ll learn about at DBW 2013 pre-conference workshops. If you’ve already registered but haven’t signed up, sign up. And if you haven’t registered, get to it! Learn more about each of the workshops here.

Ebooks Unlikely to Replace Cookbooks? (Toronto Star)
That’s what one somewhat idealistic scholar says. Owner of Toronto’s The Cookbook Store touts the high production values and usefulness of e-cookbooks, but still thinks that people will buy print cookbooks. 

 
Delay for Random-Penguin (Pub Lunch)
Regulatory approvals in several countries is what will keep the Random-Penguin merger from closing until late next year.
 
Digital Prime (DBW)
Sci-fi and fantasy fiction publisher Prime Books has launched a digital-only imprint.
 
Digital Charlie Brown Christmas (DBW)
For the first time, over 60 Peanuts titles are going digital.
 
Beauty Tips for the Apocalypse (Lifebooker.Tumblr)
If you are currently reading this, the apocalypse hasn’t happened…yet. No matter what bad stuff is about to happen, make sure you look good with these helpful tips.
 

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Kindle as Magic 8 Ball. Illustration by Todd Goldstein 

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