Idea No.402 (July 2023 issue)

Idea No.402 (July 2023 issue)

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Independent publishers are increasing their presence despite the publishing recession. Special issue introducing the activities of 7 publishers/publishers

[Special feature] Opening up small book production: The activities of independent publishers and the future of publishing distribution in Japan

A special feature focusing on independent publishers that have been increasing their presence in the publishing world in recent years.
Now that we are moving from an era of "big book making" to "small book making," we are thinking about book making as an activity open to everyone.

This issue's special feature focuses on the behind-the-scenes aspects of book production. Things outside the words written in the book you hold in your hands -- the publisher of the book, the people involved in its creation, the place where it was published, and the circumstances surrounding its publication -- have a direct impact on the reader's experience of enjoying the book. It's not a thing. The world is full of books, and for those of us who have access to the books we want to read when we want, books and the work of the people involved in making them are a natural part of our lives, like the infrastructure that supports our daily lives. However, in recent years, this common sense has been crumbling. Bookstores are disappearing from cities, the number of paper magazines and books is decreasing little by little, and the future of the domestic publishing industry is in doubt. Who will take on and protect the role of publishing and distribution, which is to spell out words, compose books, and pass them on to future generations? I would like to focus on independent publishers as the ones who are opening up the future of book production.

With the advent of the Internet and the expansion of distribution and sales options such as distributors and agents other than major companies, it has become possible to purchase books from many independent publishers at regular bookstores and online bookstores such as Amazon. In recent years, with the support of independent bookstores, which are also increasing in number, and the spread of information on social media, the vocation of making small books is becoming established as a new way of publishing sales in the online society.

In this special feature, we interview seven publishers from around the time: rn press, Yushobo, Inu no Senakaza, Etcetra Books, Minato no Hito, and Shoshi Kankanbo, and have published articles with unique perspectives and themes. We will introduce various books, their appearance, and each company's approach to publishing activities. In addition to introducing each company, we will also introduce Akira Nagae, a writer who has been observing the publishing industry for many years, Yoshio Tsujiyama, who runs the bookstore Title in Ogikubo, Tokyo, and provides a transaction agency service, in order to provide an overview of the state of publishing distribution in Japan. We asked three people, including Hideyuki Kudo, the representative of Transview, to submit their articles. Additionally, in an attempt to connect recent publishing trends with Japan's modern publishing history and binding history, the book also includes an essay by Shoji Usuda, a researcher of binding history. In the book selection corner in the second half of the special feature, we asked seven booksellers and publishers to recommend publications from independent publishers. Please pay attention to the activities of these books and publishers.

Editing: Idea Editorial Department
List price (tax included): 3,630 yen
Release date: June 9, 2023

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Idea No.402 (July 2023 issue) | Seibundo Shinkosha Co., Ltd. (