The New Dynamics of Book Publishing Event [Recap]

09/23/2011

A few months ago, I had the pleasure of attending Seth’s live event at the (fabulous) Helen Mills Theater called The New Dynamics of Book Publishing.

I recalled some of what was mentioned from Seth’s talk in Atlanta when he came for the Linchpin tour. WIth me now being involved with The Domino Project, however, I have a new lens through which to view the material.

One of the reasons I applied for the opportunity is because I had no experience with the publishing industry. Many of the fundamental concepts and terms were foreign to me initially.

The event was filled with important people from the publishing industry, many of whom were “scared shitless” about the changes taking place. Seth offered countless anecdotes, ideas, and warnings about the changing landscape.

As is typical of his events, Seth lectured for about an hour and a half before devoting the rest of the day to the crowd’s questions. Many openly expressed concern and dismay for the predictions offered, despite there being clear alternatives to eventual obscurity.

We walked through the always-interesting history of the music industry, and the changes (the Compact Disc, greed, and trying to adapt the old way of doing business to the new digital world) that marked the beginning of the end. Seth always mentions the music industry being a perfect system when it was working properly, and I truly saw what he meant that time.

Next up was the topic of the publishing industry and how rapidly things are changing. We discussed ebooks, the Kindle, and how these things are altering the way people consume ideas. Seth waxed eloquent on the topic of his books being a medium to spread an idea as opposed to something having value because of the pages and ink. The book is just the medium.

He discussed some specific tactics (along with the hilarious history of bringing Purple Cow to market) used to promote the spreading of his books. From boxed sets, to unique offers, and the like.

Overall, it was a fabulously illuminating event that helped me grasp some critical concepts related to book publishing, and I’m thrilled to have attended.