The idea is often advanced that the rise of video on the Web will undermine reading habits – and that in a contest of pictures over words, the words will come out the loser. The jury is still out, but the spoken word has long enjoyed a warm relationship with books, and in 2013, that remains true.
Indeed, driven by advancements in technology and distribution, audiobooks are surging. According to the Audio Publishers Association, reports Andrew Albanese, Publishers Weekly senior writer, audiobook production rose in 2012 17% over 2011, and has jumped 57% since 2009.
“Freed from the need to buy CDs or tapes, the audiobook is perhaps the most convenient option out there—you can listen to an audiobook on any number of devices easily,” Albanese tells CCC’s Chris Kenneally. “For publishers, they are simply easier to market because they are downloadable and don’t need to find physical shelf space.”