Barbara Perfetti has one of my favorite work success stories. The Palm Harbour resident was a corporate number cruncher for over 20 years, and in 2005, with a couple of friends, she started a small online publishing company - romance books for literary types. She turned a profit in the first year of business, then opened a second business, an online bookstore, All Romance eBooks.

She sold the publishing company in 2008, expanded ARe into OmniLit, an e-book store that sells all genres. It became the largest independent, female-owned, digital bookstore in the world. (Amazon is their largest competitor.)

With lower financial entry barriers, publishers can take risks on new authors that before would never have stood a chance of landing a contract from one of the paper publishers. And topics no longer have to appeal to the masses - niche books are doing great, even when they only appeal to a small segment of the society and that's helping to promote a feeling of acceptance in what used to be viewed as outcast subcultures (gay romance, for instance, is a huge seller in eBooks but hard to find in the brick and mortar bookstores). And having a global community to appeal to is breaking down barriers between countries and cultures, helping people from all over the world find common ground with others they would never have known existed.

Lots of people in the world of journalism, writing, and publishing are scared by the overhaul of their industries due to advancing technology, but others, including Barb, love what it's doing for the environment.

ePub is great for the physical environment - no more cutting down trees or powering factories to bind books. No more shipping fuel costs. And no more unsold books being destroyed at alarming rates. On average, half of the books shipped to brick and mortar bookstores end up as "returns" (which means in dumpsters with the covers torn off), I was horrified at the waste the print book industry generates. Digital books not only save the trees used to make their sold/returned print equivalents, they save the manufacturing and shipping pollutants. There's no question that enjoying the latest 'how to' book, magazine, newspaper or bestselling novel in digital format is better for the environment.

She also co-founded GoGreen Read e, which is devoted to the eReading community.The OmniLit/ARe newsletter also keeps up on all the news with the latest eReaders (the devices) and software.

No comments:

Post a Comment