Self-publishing movement continues to grow, says Bowker

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A new analysis of US ISBN data by ProQuest affiliate Bowker has revealed that the number of self-published titles in 2012 jumped to more than 391,000. This number is up 59 per cent from the 2011 figure and a 422 per cent increase on the figure for 2007. E-books continue to gain on print, comprising 40 per cent of the ISBNs that were self-published in 2012, up from just 11 per cent in 2007, says the company.

'The most successful self-publishers don’t view themselves as writers only, but as business owners,' said Beat Barblan, Bowker director of identifier services. 'They invest in their businesses, hiring experts to fill skill gaps and that’s building a thriving new service infrastructure in publishing.'

The analysis also shows the growing prominance of a handful of companies that offer publishing services to individual authors. More than 80 per cent of self-published titles came to market with support from just eight companies, including Smashwords and CreateSpace.