The number of books published by authors using fee-based publication services, such as Lulu and AuthorHouse, is overtaking the number of books published by mainstream publishers, according to Bowker's 2009 annual data. Little empirical research exists on self-published books. This article presents the results of an investigation of a random sample of 348 books from a total population of 385,173 titles available from ninety-three fee-based publication services in 2008. Major findings include publication patterns within the nontraditional publishing industry, availability of self-published titles online and in libraries, state of bibliographic and cataloging control, and subject content of self-published books. The findings provide a baseline "snapshot" of books available from publication services in 2008, a time when the self-publishing industry was established but was still small enough to study overall. The article concludes with implications for librarians from this study of self-published books.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Library and Information Sciences