Vikings At The Gate

Vikings Attack

A new era of book publishing is here, and independent authors can finally, truly leave the destiny of their works in the hands of the readers. Find out what’s happening!

A new breed of writer is knocking on the publishing industry’s doors – Independent author-publishers or Authorpreneurs.

The eBook industry is today worth just under $97 million and reports a year-on-year growth of over 16%. In all this, it certainly does not come as a surprise that today eBooks account for over 10% of all books sales worldwide. What’s more, is that technology is now enabling Authopreneurs to take charge of every phase of book publishing, from plotting, writing, and cover design to printing, distribution, and marketing.

Whichever way you look at it, it seems the global publishing industry is changing and now a new breed of literary Vikings are challenging the established kingdoms of the publishing houses, looking to claim their spoils: Erick Drake casts the runes.

The Author Publishing Industry Is Changing

The traditional publishing industry has always acted as the institution through which new authors and works would have to pass. And, undeniably, in the beginning, this was due to the fact that publishing houses had the technology and network necessary to print and distribute a book. 

The origins of the book publishing industry can be traced back to 3500 BC and the times of papyrus rolls and clay slates. The development of the writing system around 600BC and the advent of parchment paper have only fueled the distribution of the written word. 

Subsequent inventions – including the block printing technique in 220 AD, the moveable typewriter in the 1440s, and the institution of the Cambridge University Press in 1534 – solidified the traditional publishing industry as an institution. 

At the same time, many examples that dot the history of the publishing industry tells us that this is more a story about rich sponsors of authors and publishing houses that acted as the gatekeepers of publishing. Stories such as the one of Dr. Samuel Johnson and the dictionary are examples of how the only chance for authors to get their books out there was to gain the attention of a publisher.

A lady Viking

But all that is changing once more.

For a while, back in England’s dark ages, monks were the main conservators and creators of books. Then, in the year 793, the peace and complacency of the monks of Lindisfarne and of the established kingdoms as a whole, was shattered by a bruising encounter.

Enter the Vikings.

Why The New Publishing Trends Are So Revolutionary

While the history of the publishing industry is undoubtedly long and intricate, recent technologies are changing the industry at the speed of light. Thanks to the advent of affordable and fast print on demand technologies, ebooks and online ebook distributors such as Amazon with their Kindle Unlimited Services, and Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) options, authors finally, for the first time, have control over printing, publishing, and distributing their own books. 

The benefits of this technological transformation are game-changing. Firstly, an authors’ chances of success or failure no longer depend on the decisions made by the gatekeepers (publishing houses) of the publishing world, but are in the hands of the book-buying and reading public — which some would argue is exactly where they should be. 

A gatekeeper, yesterday

Then there is the ability of the independent author to pivot quickly to meet market demand – like the Vikings, independent authors can go wherever they choose, whenever they choose. They have no committee’s, overheads or corporate dictates holding them back. And they are fast. Boy, are they fast.

Independent authors have complete creative, budgeting and scheduling control. And, of course, independent authors receive the whole of their revenue – no percentages to pay to agents or publishers for them. When they go a-viking, they keep all the spoils.

All these drastic changes have transformed the landscape for writers.

Back in 1982, Kate Bush released arguably one of her best albums, The Dreaming. Fed up with producers and money men interfering with her creative choices, she built her own studio and wrote, recorded, produced and edited the album herself. She had complete artistic control. The result was an album unlike any that had preceded it, an album that took risks and broke new ground. An album with no gatekeepers between the artist and the market.

Like Kate Bush before them, modern writers, as independent authors, are now artists in total control of the work they produce as well as entrepreneurs, able to market their products the way they see fit. 

With each passing day, the gatekeepers of old become more and more irrelevant.

And, like the rulers of 8th century Europe faced with countless Viking incursions, they have no idea how to react.

The New Publishing World: The Vikings Are At The Gate

The opportunities afforded by new technologies are a dream come true for many writers, as the increasing number of success stories can testify.  

Viking at the gate
The vikings are at the gate

As these Vikings of the new publishing world approach the traditional publishing industry’s gatekeepers, more changes are bound to happen.

And these are exciting times for today’s writers as they venture into the unknown beyond the gate with an intent to make it on their own.

Of course, this news is even more exciting for worldwide readers who now have access to a much wider range of books and stories. 

For Tyr and glory!

Check out Erick Drake’s books

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I thought the book was superbly written, with brilliantly drawn settings and characters. The author weaved a well-crafted and hilarious space adventure that will captivate the reader from the opening chapter.

Thoroughly enjoyed it and highly recommend it. A well deserved five stars from me and looking forward to reading more from this talented writer.

Amazon reviewer

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