Publishing Career Field

Publishing Careers Outlook

Publishing Careers 3Overall, the outlook for publishing is good. The Association of American Publishers (AAP) estimated that U.S. book sales were more than $25 billion in 2005. That figure indicates an increase of 9.9 percent over 2004 sales. Categories that experienced significant growth included juvenile hardbound (59.6 percent growth), juvenile paperbound (10.6 percent growth), and K-12 education (10.5 percent growth). Audio books (29 percent growth) and e-books (44.8 percent growth) also made significant gains. Books sold through book clubs and mail order experienced the biggest losses, with a 6.7 percent drop in sales.

According to the Occupational Outlook Handbook, employment in newspapers is expected to grow more slowly than average as more people choose to receive their news from nonprint sources, such as the Internet and television. Newspapers will also continue to face strong competition for advertising dollars.

According to U.S. Industry and Trade Outlook, newspapers have not done as well as book publishers in recent years. In the United States and other industrialized nations, newspapers have seen their circulations decrease. At the same time, although advertising revenues have increased slightly, newspapers’ share of total advertising has slipped as television, other print media, and the Internet have increased their percentages. In developing countries, however, both circulation and advertising are on the rise. Various large U.S. publishers have expanded their overseas operations in an attempt to make themselves more commercially viable. It is expected that newspaper revenues will remain fairly steady in the coming years. The trend toward local papers being bought by large chains is also expected to continue.

The U.S. Department of Labor expects slow employment growth for periodicals, fueled mainly by increasing interest in professional, scientific, and technical journals and special interest publications, such as health and fitness magazines. Overall increases in circulation, which are under 10 percent per year, are not dramatic but are steady. Many magazines publishers are expanding their operations by publishing abroad, taking advantage of vital overseas markets. At the same time, publishers are focusing much energy on the Internet. As paper has become more expensive, publishers have become more motivated to provide products that do not require expenditures on paper.

The department also expects growth in textbook publishing due to the increase of high school and college students. Publishers of technical and scientific books and journals will also see good prospects as the public seeks information about the latest technological and scientific discoveries. Employment in book publishing (except textbook publishing) should see slow growth. Employment in catalog and mail-order publishing should grow slowly as well, and this industry segment will face increasing competition from online shopping resources.

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Related Careers:

  • Art Directors
  • Book Editors
  • Cartoonists and Animators
  • Columnists
  • Copywriters
  • Desktop Publishing Specialists
  • Diet and Fitness Writers
  • Editors
  • Graphic Designers
  • Illustrators
  • Indexers
  • Intellectual Property Lawyers
  • Internet Developers
  • Lexicographers
  • Literary Agents
  • Magazine Editors
  • Medical Illustrators and Photographers
  • Newspaper Editors
  • Photo Editors
  • Photographers
  • Prepress Workers
  • Printing Press Operators and Assistants
  • Reporters
  • Science and Medical Writers
  • Technical Writers and Editors
  • Webmaster Career
  • Writers

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