From The Guardian:
Self-published books accounted for more than 20% of crime, science fiction, romance and humour ebooks sold in the UK in 2012, according to newly released statistics.
The figures, from Bowker Market Research, show that while self-published books made up a tiny proportion – 2% – of all books purchased last year, this figure increases dramatically, to 12%, when print books are removed from the equation.
When just adult fiction and non-fiction ebooks are looked at, self-publishing’s share increases to 14% of the market, and in the crime,science fiction, romance and humour genres, self-publishing took more than 20%.
. . . .
“The overwhelming majority [of self-published books] are terrible – unutterable rubbish,” said [Andrew] Franklin [the managing director of Profile Books]. “They don’t enhance anything in the world.”
Franklin said there were “now unmeasurable numbers” of books being self-published. “These books come out and are met with a deathly silence, so the principle experience of self-publishing is one of disappointment,”
. . . .
“I was very shocked to learn you can buy Facebook friends and likes on social media. That is what passes for affirmation in what I think is the deeply corrupt world of self-publishing,” he said, stating his belief in the need for the publisher as “gatekeeper”. He added: “I think there is a process of the professional making of books which does make a real difference to the reader and the writer.”
Link to the rest at The Guardian and thanks to Julia for the tip.
If 20% of the genre market is “deathly silence,” PG respectfully suggests that Mr. Franklin is more than a little hard of hearing. Perhaps that’s why he’s just discovering Facebook and social media. In his defense, minding the gate undoubtedly occupies most of his attention.