Is it because they understand it so well that than can offer you value added services or save you money on both the publishing and printing end?
Is it being done out of sheer altruism or simply because the print industry has been hit with the double “whammy bhammy” of a bad economy and digital book publishing?
For a long time now the digital publishers such as Amazon, CreateSpace, Xlibris, Lulu and others will both print as printing on demand (single books as needed) or help you digitize your book as an eBook. There are also those vanity publishers who will “publish your work” and at the same time organize your printing of your book. Now though long standing book printing companies are jumping into the publishing arena in addition to their book printing services.
Bookmasters is probably one of the best examples of printing companies who are now wearing the hat of publisher. On the home page of their book printing web site, they ask that you “Take advantage of our relationships with book wholesalers and retailers and our sales teams to promote your titles and increase exposure.” Their claim is that of the traditional role of the publisher, to both distribute and promote.
Ingram is a printer-distributor-publisher claiming that they are “the only publishing platform that delivers fully integrated print and digital distribution services to the book industry through a single source. What does that mean? Once you finish and format your book we make it possible to share it with the world.” They also go by Ingram Spark and Lightning Source which is the book printing arm.
Booklogix is a publisher who also prints in house. I am not sure which came first, “the chicken or the egg”, but in any event they are also offering “one stop shopping.” They state that “”In addition to being a book publisher, BookLogix also offers book printing. We print our authors’ books in-house, and can print hardcover, …… Unlike other publishers and book printers, we can fill orders from retailers such as Amazon and distributors like Baker & Taylor directly from our in-house manufacturing facility.
There are others and more will be joining the combo approach as printers struggle through this economy and add book publishing and distribution as part of their services in addition to print. Is this a good thing? Who knows and I welcome your feedback should you have had any direct experience in one stop book shopping for both print and distribution. I suppose you may say “any port in a book storm” and it may or may not be better than self publishing. I doubt any will print for free as part of their publishing and distribution and my guess is that they view this as “value added services,” as printers are fond of referring any services beyond the printed page. What do you think, is this trend in your interests or just the printers?
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