Future of Publishing

As part of London Writers' Week 2016, I recently chaired two panels on theatre publishing and diversity. The speakers were Rob Drummer, Associate Dramaturg at the Bush Theatre, and George Spender, Senior Editor at Oberon Books.
We have been in this game for a long time. We had digitised several of our books and were offering them as apps before ebooks had ever been thought of!
While there are more eyes on stories, the amount of cash these stories generate in terms of ad revenue, is getting smaller. Almost £400m in print advertising is forecast to be lost from the UK newspaper market by the end of 2014, with digital revenues only able to make up about 25 per cent of this decline
Publishing of tomorrow will be different due to the rise of independent authors, who write and publish their books in more formats, for more audiences and through more channels than ever before.
A few of us recently attended an event on the Future of News and Social Media, put on by News UK (one of our partners) as part of its News 3.0 series in Charlotte Street, London.
When I was growing up, one of my favourite books was the Picture Book which the artist Edmund Dulac created to raise money for the French Red Cross during the First World War.
The internet ruined everything. It ruined music, it ruined actual human relationships, it ruined the postal service, and now it has ruined the publishing industry. Literature is going to hell in an Amazon shopping cart because people don't like physical media any more, and great works of art are going to be lost forever because of the unguided ochlocracy of amateur online content.
Newspapers are not the most popular kid in class right now. In fact they seem to be getting beaten up and bullied at every break.
In the digital future, it's not just about a physical book or even a plain text ebook which is what we have now. There have already been some tentative experiments in apps and enhanced ebooks but there is clearly a desire to see more of a push into developing a customer experience and not just providing a physical read.
At my house, an underappreciated Cambridge terrace filled up with me and two boys (also graduate journos), talk is always turning to the fact we've pitched ourselves into an industry that is having a bit of a flail.