Thursday 5 March 2015

A love of books

Do publishers ever make millions? I actually suspect not, though one must envy Bloomsbury the Harry Potter books. Or should we? Bloomsbury now has something to live up to. They have had to expand. Can they keep up with that expansion? They seem to be doing well but is this a case of having to do well?
Certainly most publishers who have offices in London have to have a very commercial attitude to the book they publish. Will this book sell enough to cover the overheads? Even here, though, there is a love of books involved. Editors proudly keep copies of books they have worked on on their shelves, near their desks. Most involved in the industry work long hours but it doesn’t matter because they love their work. I’m pretty convinced that if they put the amount of business energy into almost any other sort of enterprise they’d make a lot more money.
The small presses have a little more freedom, fewer overheads and make little money at all. They are careful with their money and work in such a way that they don’t go under. Well most of them don’t.  A few do.  The people who work for them love books and thus spend their time doing what they enjoy. Of course they should be paid fairly for what they do and as long as they are, they’re not bothered about not making millions.
I work with texts all the time, yet many a time I’ve gone clothes shopping and come back with even more books. They’ve made me very happy.                      

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