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Analysis of the Fiction Writing Market

It's difficult to find up-to-date statistics on the publishing industry, but the numbers are still interesting. Based on a July 2014 Author Earnings Report, only 15% of Amazon ebook sales reflected the Big 5 publishers. Meanwhile, 70% of ebooks sold were issued by either independent (25%) or small-to-medium publishers (45%). Interestingly, only 1% were published by Amazon while 13% were by self-published authors.

I was amazed to learn that fiction heavily outsells nonfiction, at least among the top 50,000 best-selling ebooks sold on Amazon. Here's how the different categories sold as far as daily unit sales:

Genre Fiction69%
Nonfiction22%
Fiction & Literature5%
Children's Books3%
Comics & Graphic Novels1%
Foreign Language0%


Another trend worth noting is that in the 2015-2016 period, physical bookstore sales were down at Barnes & Noble and Books-A-Million, the two biggest brick and mortar booksellers in America. Sales also shrank at box stores like Walmart and Target. Yet ebook sales on Amazon were on the rise. Mainstream media, which gets a lot of news mixed up due to either sloppy reporting or a focus on PR marketing, has been touting that physical bookstores have rebounded in this period. It's similar to mainstream media's misinformation that streaming services are saving the music industry, which overall has had flat sales in recent years.

I'm interested in publishing because I've been a freelance writer for many years (ever since I wrote for music industry publication VirtuallyAlternative starting in 1997). I've assumed all this time that nonfiction outsold fiction, but I guess I was wrong.

New Adventures in Fiction

Venus Dolofonos (middle left) is a character I created on March 21, 2017. She's the (occasional) mistress of another character I created called Evan Springer Satanica (lower left). Their relationship is complicated because they are both often seen with other partners at exotic elite night clubs. It's not clear what the status is or where it will lead. Evan is a government hacker while Venus once worked for a high-end advertising agency. Now she does other jobs on the side, but she doesn't promote them on her social media profiles. Her title is simply "consultant."

She is the second character I've created for an upcoming fictional story about who knows what. I haven't written fiction in over a decade, as I became more involved with real world activities such as music and writing content for various websites. I finally decided in 2017 when I created Illoogle that I need to get back to my roots, which is being more of an artist (a mix of music and cartoon art). I'll still write serious reports for multi-million dollar (mostly tech) companies, but I want to spend some of my free time creating fictional stories based on fictional characters.

Created by Alex Cosper