Things are changing so fast in the publishing industry it can leave your head spinning. Earlier this week, Amazon announced that they would be publishing a romance line, Montlake, and three of the Big Six publishers announced that they would be opening a joint, online retail site, Bookish. (Read the Publisher's Weekly article.)
Amazon made it clear that this is the first of several publishing imprints. Below is an excerpt from Publisher's Marketplace:
Amazon Launches Romance Imprint, with More Genre Lines to Come
Amazon is launching another imprint, Montlake Romance (named for a Seattle neighborhood), which will publish "a broad range of frontlist titles in popular romance sub-genres, including romantic suspense and contemporary and historic romance novels, as well as fantasy and paranormal." The first announced author is two-time RITA winner Connie Brockway, whose THE OTHER GUY'S BRIDE will be published this fall. They say it will "be available to North American readers in Kindle, print and audio formats at www.amazon.com, as well as at national and independent booksellers," and Amazon tells us her print edition will be published as a trade paperback, though in the future they expect to publish romance authors in trade paper and mass market.
But it makes me wonder: will Bookish be able to compete against Amazon's formidable online book sales and who, besides Amazon, will carry Amazon published books?
Do they really think national and independent booksellers will carry their books? I mean truthfully, I can't see my local indie embracing Amazon books when they've been such a ruthless competitor in the past. And as a writer, would you want your agent pitching your books to Amazon imprints?
What do you think?
P.S. It isn't just books. According to this article, Amazon dominates one third of all e-commerce in the United States. Something to think about...