NEW YORK (AP) — Guide publishing in 2020 was a narrative of how a lot an trade can change and the way a lot it could actually, or needs to, stay the identical.
“Numerous what has occurred this 12 months — if it had been a novel, I might say that it had a little bit an excessive amount of plot,” stated Simon & Schuster CEO Jonathan Karp.
Three narratives ran by the ebook world for a lot of the 12 months: an trade pressed to acknowledge that the established order was unacceptable, an trade providing consolation and enlightenment throughout traumatic occasions, and an trade ever extra consolidated across the power of Penguin Random House and Amazon.com.
To its profit and to its dismay, publishing was drawn into the occasions of the second. The pandemic halted and threatened to wipe out a decade of progress for impartial bookstores, compelled the postponement of numerous new releases and led to numerous others being forgotten. The annual nationwide conference, BookExpo, was called off and may be gone permanently after present organizers Reed Exhibitions introduced they had been “retiring” it.
The trade had lengthy regarded itself as a facilitator of open expression and excessive beliefs, however in 2020 debates over variety and #MeToo highlighted blind spots about race and gender and challenged the reputations of everybody from poetry publishers to Oprah Winfrey, from ebook critics to the late editor of Ernest Hemingway. Workers themselves helped take the lead: They staged protests in support of Black Lives Matters and walked off the job at Hachette Guide Group after the writer introduced it had acquired Woody Allen’s memoir, which Hachette soon dropped. ( Skyhorse Publishing eventually released it.)