21 Full Grown Elephants? That’s a Lot of Books.
172,000 new books released in the United States, according to Bowker, the world’s leading provider of bibliographic information. The number of new titles dropped about 10% from the record high of 195,000 in 2004, but 172,000 titles s still quite a few books.
Let me see if I can put this in perspective. If the books were shelved side by side one would need two and three quarter miles of shelving. If the books were stacked one atop the other, they would reach almost nine times higher than the world’s tallest building, the Taipei 101, which measures 1,671 feet. To transport one copy of each title, the vehicle would have to be capable of hauling 86 tons or 21 full grown elephants. Laying the books down in a straight line would require a little over 16 miles of railroad tracks.
If a copy of each title was purchased at retail, the total expenditure would be enough to send one student to Harvard for 70 years. However, it would have only been enough to cover less than 20% of the cost of the most expensive diamond ever sold (A 100.10-carat, pear-shaped, "D" flawless diamond sold for $16,548,750, at Sotheby’s, Switzerland, on May 17, 1995.)
How difficult is it to get a book published by a commercial publisher? Well the odds are better gambling in Las Vegas.
We surveyed over 60 literary agents as research for our book, The Making of a Bestseller. On the average these agents agreed to accept only a little more than 2 in 1000 of the authors who contacted them.
lot of new titles and a lot of happy authors.