What Is Print-on-Demand?
Print-on-demand (POD) is a revolutionary technology that
enables publishers to print one book at a time, upon receipt
of an order. Print-on-demand eliminates three of the biggest
problems in the book business: artificial scarcity of
publications, returns of unsold books, and the warehousing of
The Publishing Business Is Based on an Old Technology Model
The U.S. publishing industry is producing fewer and fewer
titles each year, due to pressure to
increase sales per title. According to industry estimates, the
publishers reject more than 90% of manuscript submissions.
These manuscripts are not all insignificant, uninteresting, or
badly written. There may be many other reasons why a publisher
does not accept these manuscripts. The timing might be off;
publishers might want to wait for a new season; the subject
matter might be too specialized; the chance of becoming a
bestseller is perceived to be limited; the publisher’s
financial return requirements are too high for books which
might be slower selling. The list goes on. These reasons may
have been understandable in an era of traditional printing
technologies. But we live in an era of abundance of ideas and
information, and the Internet, online bookstores, and now
print-on-demand technology are matching this abundance. There
is no reason to base publishing decisions on perceived
scarcity of financial and technological resources. Many ideas
deserve to be heard and published.
Warehousing of Stock and Returns
In traditional publishing, flexibility is limited when demand is different than
expected. Currently 35-40% of books are returned by the
bookstores to the publishers. Many of these books end up being
offered for bargain prices in secondhand bookstores or are
destroyed. In addition, bookstores usually order the number of
books they expect they can sell. If the title turns out to be
popular, the store may not be able to order additional books
if the publisher’s inventory is depleted. On the other hand,
small bookstores cannot afford to stock slow-moving titles.
Print-on-Demand Technology Enables the Abundance of Ideas
To Be Expressed and Spread Widely
Print-on-demand technology makes it possible to publish a
book for a fraction of the cost of a traditionally published
book. No longer does a publisher need to print 5,000, 10,000
or more books. It suffices to create a digital file of a book,
and print one, one hundred, or as many books as needed.
Massive returns or warehouses filled with unsold books are a
thing of the past.
How does Print-on-Demand Work?
First, manuscripts are digitized and formatted. The digital
book file is stored in a database, which is connected to a
network of servers and computers. Every time the computers
receive an order, the file is sent to a digital printer, where
the book is printed, as well as the cover. Then the book will
be bound and is ready to be shipped to the place where the
order originated. A recent development is that databases are
being connected to a growing number of printers in different
locations, including different countries. In this way, a book
can be released in one country while being printed at the
printer closest to the customer.
Print-on-Demand Technology Offers Real Advantages
Readers will have much more choice of new titles
as well as old titles. Out-of-print titles or unique
antiquarian books can become available at the touch of a
Authors gain because the economic hurdle of
getting published is being lowered substantially. If an
author writes specialized books for a niche audience, these
books can be made available affordably. If books are out of
print, these can be easily released again.
Booksellers should be able to benefit by offering
many more titles without storing them in their warehouses.
Publishers can gain by widening their publishing
list to include titles for niche audiences or by
experimenting with cutting-edge titles. Publishers can keep
all their titles available, without letting them go out of
The environment benefits because this process is
more sustainable and efficient: fewer trees are killed and
fewer books are unsold.
Why Is Paraview Publishing Unique?
Paraview is a unique publisher, because:
We combine new technologies such as the Internet,
print-on-demand, and eBooks with its focus on mind,
body, and spirit and the frontiers of science and
We are working with leading digital printers,
online bookstores, web designers, editors, and
marketing people to develop publishing on demand as a
way of reaching readers worldwide.
We’ve collected a staff that has many years of
experience with our specialized subject matter. We
work closely with our authors and reach our niche
We are affiliated with the
Paraview Literary Agency,
which has inside information on the literary
marketplace. The agency has enjoyed a niche position
in the publishing industry since the 1980s. Its
experience in personal growth, spirituality, and
wellness is unparalleled. Its client list includes the
world’s foremost scientists, thinkers, and other
experts interested in the transformation of society.
Last but not least, Paraview Publishing has
established a joint imprint, Paraview Pocket Books,
Simon & Schuster, thus enabling us to match our
unique content with a leader in publishing, marketing,
and distributing of mass market books.