Self-Publishing Stats Rise

Bowker has updated their self-publishing statistics with numbers from 2018 – the second year in a row with more than one million self-published books carrying ISBNs. Bowker counted 1.68 million ISBNs issued to self-published authors, a 40% increase over 2017. (Even that number is far lower than the actual number of self-published books, because many ebook authors don’t bother with ISBNs at all – Amazon, the major ebook retailer, doesn’t require them.)

Amazon’s CreateSpace print-on-demand program is responsible for most of those books, with 1.4 million self-published print books in 2018 (up from 929,290 the year before). Lulu came in second, with 37,456 titles, an increase over 2017’s 36,651. Author Solutions produced 16,019 print books and 10,585 ebooks, up a bit from 2017.

Amazon is by far the biggest distributor of self-published ebooks, though they don’t release exact numbers. They’re followed by Smashwords with 72,000 titles in 2018, a decline of 3% from the year before. Lulu came next, with 30,021 ebooks, show­ing a decline from 30,747 the year before.

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