U.S. Book Production Reaches All-Time High

by Staff

Total U.S. book production reached an all-time high of 195,000 titles in 2004, an increase of 14 percent from the previous year, according to a recent study by R.R. Bowker, the publisher of the Books in Print database and the official agency for assigning ISBNs in the United States.

The genre that reflected the largest growth in 2004 was adult fiction, which increased 43.1 percent to 25,184 titles. Adult fiction now accounts for 14 percent of all titles published in this country.

The number of poetry titles published in 2004 reflected a 40.5 percent increase from the previous year. According to Bowker, which tracks poetry and drama together, 1,779 more titles from the combined category were published from 2003 to 2004.

The dramatic increase in the number of fiction and poetry titles is not reflected in the number of titles published by major trade houses, however. These large publishers released a total of 24,159 new titles in 2004, which is a 5.4 percent increase from 2003, but their adult fiction titles increased only 3.5 percent from the previous year.

While the large houses released more titles in business, juvenile, law, sociology, and travel, they cut back on poetry and literary fiction.

For more information about the study, visit www.bowker.com.