I linked to this piece this past Saturday, but it’s good enough to deserve a little focus. It’s directed toward Nonfiction Authors, but you novelists can profit from this, too.
Prior to the development of high-speed, print-on-demand digital presses, the only way to produce print runs cost-effectively was using the more traditional offset presses. But the only way to get low costs per unit was to commit to a high volume of books per print run.
Now, when it came to authors with an existing following and sales history from previous books, print runs were quite easy to predict. But when it came to new authors, this printing technology resulted in a huge waste of book stock, as publishers were required to print too many copies without having clear sales forecasts.
With the popularity of the nascent self-publishing industry in the early to mid-90s, as well as the increased profile of smaller indie presses, equipment manufacturers realized that a new solution was needed. Today, digital technology has improved to the point of being able to produce high-quality images that are cost-effective at low volumes and nearly indistinguishable from the quality standards of offset printing.
Bennett R. Coles is an award-winning author of six books published through Harper Collins (NY) and Titan Publishing Group (UK). He is also the publisher at Promontory Press and the founder/CEO of Cascadia Author Services, a boutique full-service firm that specializes in premium author services specifically designed for busy professionals.