My friend, Gordon Davidescu, sent me this interesting link from O’Reilly publishing where you buy a book that is bound in a school-like binder and then you can either download updated chapters and cut them up and place them in the binder or you can order pre-cut pages from the publisher to add to your book binder.

My first question:  “Why does it take six weeks for an update?”  I wrote my Google Apps book for Thomson and I add online bonus chapters — with screenshots — the day a new Dashboard features are announced.  I give my readers free access to those chapters in order to guarantee the ongoing freshness of the book.

My second question:  “Are authors paid to continually update their content?”  If yes, great! If not, why not?  I’m all for the evergreen book, but not perpetual publishing purgatory where authors are made to write never-ending books.

My final question: “Why do I need O’Reilly to publish me if people are just downloading updates?  I’ll do it all myself and keep all the profit without a split!” 

As publishers mark down royalty advances to little or nothing, and as they “publish” school-like binders as books… they are not creating new content or exploring new niches — they are actually pushing authors to self-publish, electronically, on their own websites.

Any publisher can buy an empty binder — but few authors have the want, or the ability, to keep filling that empty space with new content and updated material.

Posted by David Boles

David Boles was born in Nebraska and his MFA is from Columbia University in the City of New York. He is an Author, Lyricist, Playwright, Publisher, Editor, Actor, Designer, Director, Poet, Producer, and Boodle Boy for print, radio, television, film, the web and the live stage. With more than 50 books in print, David continues to write 2MM words a year. He has authored over 25K articles and published more. Read the Prairie Voice Archive at | Buy his books at David Boles Books Writing & Publishing | Earn the world with David Boles University | Get a script doctored at Script Professor | Touch American Sign Language mastery at Hardcore ASL.

One Comment

  1. […] the penultimate goal of authors across the world.  I’ve made my fair share of money in the publishing marketplace and one thing I can confirm is how much the industry has changed over the last 20 […]



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