Lately I've been thinking that publishing has become increasingly difficult. RDSP's 10-year anniversary is right around the corner and this is definitely not how I imagined things would be at this milestone. At first I thought I was just tired, burnt-out, in a rut and tried to shake it off. I figured it was not publishing but me. However, as the months have gone by it's become clear that publishing is, indeed, getting harder. There are many reasons but I read an article last week that confirmed one of my suspicions. It's become increasingly more difficult to get people's attention about a book or author and I believe that is partly due to "book spam." There are so many books published nowadays that most releases just get lost like a needle in a giant haystack of pages. The article I read concerned the problem of "knock-offs," books that are similarly named to popular titles in order to trick people into buying. You can read the complete article here: But the part that really caught my interest was this: 

Karen Peebles, who is the author of I am the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, says she has self-published around 10,000 books though CreateSpace, not all of which are in her own name. "I am a single mother who home schools her children," says Peebles, who says she sells "thousands and thousands" of books a month. "Self-publishing is a great way for me to make income. I receive a pretty nice royalty every month."

I always knew that the huge influx of new titles created by POD and self-publishing was trouble. Obviously I don't have anything against POD (that's our model) or self-publishing (as long as it's done with thought) but there is a serious problem with quality control. These two modes have flung open the gates so that literally ANYTHING can be published. Again, I want to be completely clear that I support self-publishing when the author does the work to produce a quality product and I believe POD is a good thing. However, there's no way that these 10,000 titles put out by Karen Peebles can possibly be quality, or even original, work.
Now you may be thinking: you live by the sword, you die by the sword. RDSP used these new technologies to get to where we are. We
would not have any publishing company if we'd had to go the traditional route. But one thing we've insisted on since the beginning is a
certain level of quality and we plan to continue to insist on that regardless. I'm not interested in debating the merits and pitfalls of these modern modes but just want to recognize the reality of the situation. It is my hope that customers will become more savvy about the books they buy, it really isn't that hard to spot a fake or poorly written book by reading the description. But in the meantime how many great books are being lost in the shuffle?
At 10 years I expected RDSP to be lounging on a small but sufficiently comfy bed of laurels, getting its belly rubbed and wagging its tail. Instead we're going back to the hungry dog days, planning a new attack with fresh ideas about how to bring great, but overlooked, fringe fiction to the world. Next year we'll be celebrating 10 years of publishing but mostly we'll be trying to reinvent RDSP to keep up with the changes in publishing. We think it's time for something drastic and a new approach. Hopefully this dog still has a few more wags of the tale left.