As I blogged about last night, Dorchester Publishing is currently in a state of flux. Today, probably their most prominent horror author, Brian Keene, announced he is parting ways with Dorchester. I can't say that I'm really surprised by this decision. It does highlight my gut feeling that things at Dorchester are not good right now. And now, things have gotten even worse with one of their heavyweights leaving.
I believe this is a good move for Brian Keene. He has name recognition and a loyal fanbase, he is tech savvy when it comes to social networking (Twitter, Facebook, blog, etc.), and he has a tremendous amount of drive. I have no doubt that he will find success whatever route he ends up taking. I look at the success that J. A. Konrath has found by handling his own books, and very much believe Brian can do just as well, if not better.
I think we are about to embark upon a time of great upheaval in the publishing industry. We all knew ebooks were something that were going to have to dealt with at some time, but the poor economy has acted as a catalyst to speed up the process. I think we will see some major changes in the next year or two. Do I think print books will disappear? No, not totally. Will ebooks permenantly change the landscape of publishing? Yes, I wholeheartedly believe so. I see a time in the next couple of years when bookstores start closing, ereaders take off in popularity, and ebooks become the norm, instead of luxury items. I don't have a bunch of data upon which to base my opionions. They are exactly that, my opinions. But I do believe the writing is on the wall, er, on the ereader. This next generation has grown up on game consoles, the internet, and iphones. Honestly, the only way a number of them will probably ever enjoy a good novel is through electronic means. I'm as nostalgic as the next person. However, I'm already excited about this new world that is being opened up before me. I can't wait to enjoy the works of authors I would have probably never tried before.
Don't get me wrong. This is going to be a turbulent time ahead. Traditional publishers are not going to go down without a fight. But I think it's inevitable. Change is coming.