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This Business of Publishing by Richard Curtis

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Preface: Then and Now

 

NEARLY TWO DECADES HAVE PASSED since I began writing about the publishing industry, and, as middle-aged people are wont to do, I recently browsed through my pile of tearsheets and wondered where the time had gone. Nostalgia is a sweet but essentially useless emotion, so, after dabbing the mist from my eyes, I took a harder look at the body of this work and began to ruminate on the changes that have occurred in the industry since 1981.

Our tradition-bound field evolves very slowly, but with the perspective of time, one can see definite trends—some good, some ominous. The advance of the publishing business toward monolithic consolidation continues inexorably, leaving almost no independent companies of large dimension operating ...

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