A publisher expected to produce annual growth has several options:
1. Add more titles to augment sales. But no one knows whether the books will sell
2. Sell more copies of existing authors and titles. A worthwhile endeavor, but also a difficult one in a retail environment that is essentially flat.
3. Ask popular authors to "increase output." Which can result in twice as many of those ingenious serial-killer books per year.
4. Diversify your "product line." Which is why there are six new diet books and presidential biographies every season: Publishers are engaged in an endless war for market share in the same limited categories, despite the fact that there's not much demand for new books in many of them.
Jonathan Karp, Washington Post (29/06/2008)
5. Cut costs, pray to the gods of movie tie-in paperback editions or hope that one of your authors gets his or her own talk show.