Every couple of months our neighborhood book club gets together. This last week we discussed Devil in the White City. We were interested in the book because of its Chicago connection.
Electronic books came up in the course of the discussion and I mentioned the Kindle. I was met with a roomful of blank stares.
Now, these folks do not have their heads in paper bags. They are informed. They listen to NPR. Some are educators. Heck, they are in a book club, for goodness’ sake. But something that is all the buzz in the publishing industry was something they had never heard of.
It reminded me that I live in a big country and a small industry. Even when a book sells millions of copies, most people have probably never even heard of it. So if Amazon has sold one- or two-hundred thousand Kindles, it’s really small potatoes.
Certainly for those of us in publishing it is our job to stay on top of trends and new developments, and plan effectively for the future. But a dose of perspective can help us do that too.