By James L. W. West III
This booklet examines literary authorship within the 20th century and covers such issues as publishing, ebook distribution, the alternate editor, the literary agent, the journal industry, subsidiary rights, and the blockbuster mentality.
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Early publishers were really u~iorga~iized tradesmen who combined the functions of printing, publishing, and bookselling under one roof. That condition persisted in various arrangements throughout much of the nineteenth century, with important publishers like the Harpers, Appletons, and Scribners operating their own printing plants and niaintaining large retail bookstores. The printing and ~nercha~ldising functions gradually fell away from most American houses during the last few decades of the nineteenth century, however, and by 1900much pri~iti~ig and bilidi~lg was jobbed out, and most bookselling was handled by separate firms.
Uid chaps. 9, 10, 16, x i d 19; scc also the cketclic~of the \ d r i o u rnid\vcstcrn housrs In Ch'lrlcs A . Mad~son,Book 1'~iblts~~ii~q iii Ai~zcrica(Ne\v York: McC;r~\v-Hill,19661 and John Tebbcl, A Htstoi:i, $Book I'zihl~sl~it~q iiz t11r C'tilred States, 4 \ols. ( N o \ h r k : Ro\\,kcr. 19-2-81), 8. " 13. ;oi. 9 . ly R. : l>ukc University Press, 19i+),pp. ln'ls l'ress, 1982),cap. pp 5-8 40 1 American Authors and the Literarji Marketplace middle-class citizens in either region. The Far West, in particular, was not nearly well enough settled to support book publishers or bookshops until well into the nventieth century.
It must be said that before about 1850, advanced printing technolop was not widelv enough available t o allo~veastern publishers to manuf~cture copies cheaply e~iouglior i11 suficie~itquantity to g o after nationwide markets.
American Authors and the Literary Marketplace Since 1900 by James L. W. West III