Good morning authors and welcome to another writer Wednesday. Occasionally we do talk about the industry and what it means to you the author and the recent 2022 publishing trends from Written Word Media have some interesting points to keep an eye on. Here are some of my personal favorites.
The Booktok Media Shift
The emergence of booktok has been incredible. Tik Tok may be a controversial platform due to origins and data sharing concerns, but for authors it has proved to be a lucrative investment of time and energy to learn this media platform. With carry overs into Instagram, the art of the short clip promo has become a launching point for emerging authors, and a revitalization for others. How far reaching is booktok? Walking into the local Books A Million here in New England, there is now a front table devoted to 'booktok famous' titles. Authors are being signed off of the success they've found by going viral, while other established authors are finding new audiences and new opportunities. While Instagram still remains a decent media hub for authors, the shift to booktok also means a change in Instagram's systems which are seeking to compete through the algorithm promotion of reels. The shift has mixed reactions, and presents a whole new learning curve when it comes to Tik Tok content creation. This is coupled by recent changes to how virtual ads are tracked which is making it more difficult for authors who traditionally found success in ads on platforms like Facebook.
Is it worth learning? It could be. But learning any new social media platform can be daunting and your results might not match someone else. Some genres will attract more views than others, and with such an influx of authors seeking to find their way into the booktok flow, you may or may not get lost in the flood. Like any platform, success is almost never overnight. There is a payment of time and effort no matter what level of success you get out of it. If you are looking to get into booktok, whether or not you aim high, keep your expectations humble, and most importantly have fun with it.
The Indie Boom
A lot of the trends in Written Word Media's article revolve around the growth of the Indie side of the industry, from an uptick of direct sales which means authors and small publishers are seeing an uptick of direct purchases from their own websites instead of third party retailers like Amazon and Barnes & Noble. More indie authors are embracing 'next gen tech' which includes AI narration or indie found narration for Audio books (another rising market in Indie Publishing circles) and the 'love them or hate them' Non Fungible Tokens. And while book prices are increasing due to the strain of pandemic production, Small Presses are continuing to make gains on the larger stage.
The rise of smaller publishers is not so shocking considering the ongoing scrutiny of the ever merging big publishing houses, which despite all of their various branches, are bottle necking opportunities for upcoming authors. In the gap left behind, small presses are stepping in, and seeing growth on the publishing stage as a result. While big publishing is still a juggernaut, the trickle down of review and media outlets is seeing more indie titles rise to the spotlight.
The Re-Emergence of Serialized Fiction
Having personally gotten my start on serialization platforms, I am so excited to see this trend and more so, I am excited to see how authors tie Serialization into their mainstream books. Between Amazon's launch of Kindlevella and the merging of Webtoons and Wattpad, there have been some notable shifts in the serialization world and more serialized works are continuing to find mainstream success in publishing collections, television shows, and movies. There is so much cross over potential here I am excited to see what emerges. How about fantasy series with serialized adventures set in the same universe? Make it happen authors!