Where will e-books be 5 years from now?

Where will e-books be 5 years from now? –@eradke

I was at a dinner sitting next to “Binky” Urban (the most successful literary agent in history) and Tina Brown, publisher of Newsweek and The Daily Beast, among other things. I asked them both about the future of publishing.

Urban said, “Publishing is doing better than ever. I’ve seen more 7 digit advances for first time novelists than ever before in the past six months.”

Tina Brown said, “Book publishing is dead. Its all e-books.”

I think they are both right.

But I know my own behavior:

Behavior #1: I go to a bookstore, pick out all the books that look interesting to me, and then sit down on a chair right there in the book store and buy them on my kindle app on my i-pad. Amazon benefits and not the bookstore. Maybe this is not fair but this is how I do it.

Behavior #2: I no longer publish with traditional publishers. I self-publish  in both kindle and e-book. And most of the sales (I can see all the numbers) come from the cheaper kindle version.

This is related to another question asked me but I’m self-publishing another book within the next four weeks: “I Was Blind but Now I See” about how to break down the myths that we are bombarded with every day so that we can find success and happiness. I’m going to use the same technique to self-publish and probably launch the book by giving it out for That’s my behavior. But before long everyone will be free at Barry Ritholz’s Big Picture conference where I am speaking.

Here’s the key:

– Write 500 words a day on the topic you are most passionate about, on your business, on whatever you want.

– Within 100 days you’ll be ready to self-publish

– Self-publish

– Now your book is your business cards. When everyone else is handing out flimsy little cards with email addresses you’ll be handing out a book. For better or worse, you’ll stand out. And that’s what you want.