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Q: WORLDWIDE BOOK SALES ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   1 Comment )
Category: Business and Money
Asked by: inventology-ga
List Price: $30.00
Posted: 19 Aug 2003 22:52 PDT
Expires: 18 Sep 2003 22:52 PDT
Question ID: 246739

More specifically, I'm after a breakdown or FICTION and NON-FICTION
book sales in terms of both VOLUME and DOLLAR VALUE.

If Worldwide figures are not available, then US figures will suffice.

Request for Question Clarification by pafalafa-ga on 20 Aug 2003 08:17 PDT
The data you are looking for are surprisingly hard to come by.  In
fact, they don't seem to exisit -- at least not in the form you are

The two key sources of book publishing statistics are:

The International Publishers Association at:

On the left hand side of the page, you'll see a button for "Statistics
on Publishing".  This will bring you to a series of spreadsheets that
cover book sales and number of titles for many countries around the
world.  In some sheets, sales are broken out by different types of
books, but oddly enough, not by fiction vs non-fiction.

US data can be found at the Association of American Publishers site

where they provide considerable detail on the $26.8 billion of book
sales in the US in 2002.  But again, no simple break-out for fiction
vs non-fiction.  In addition to the press release, you can click (on
the left hand side of the page)on links for more detailed statistical

Let me know if these sources are useful to you in your hunt for

Clarification of Question by inventology-ga on 20 Aug 2003 23:29 PDT
I also had been stumped in my research thus my use of the google
answers service.

Although you were unable to provide what I was looking for, the
request for clarification and the comments (thanks morris-ga) did
provide me with some valuable statistics.

Thanks for such a rapid response.

Request for Question Clarification by pafalafa-ga on 21 Aug 2003 07:32 PDT
Hello again,

I'm glad to hear some of the preliminary data that morris-ga and I
found was useful to you.

I've actually found a much more detailed and up-to-date source of
information.  While it still does not breakout fiction vs non-fiction,
it does breakout in detail the US sale of books (total-- 2.5 billion
books at a retail sales value of $36.6 billion).  The categories
provided include:


If this information would be of interest to you, let me know and I can
post it as an answer to your question.

Good luck in your work.


Clarification of Question by inventology-ga on 22 Aug 2003 06:02 PDT
Hi pafalafa-ga,

Yes that information would be of value and would serve well as an
answer, especially when combined with some of the other data provided
by yourself and

Thanks for being so persistant.
Answered By: pafalafa-ga on 22 Aug 2003 06:49 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Hello inventology-ga,

Thanks for the feedback, and I'm glad to hear that the information
we've been accumulating has been useful.

An orgtanization with the unusual name of the Book Industry Study
Group regularly compiles extensive statistics on book sales in the US.
You can see the latest press release for their "Book Industry Trends"
report at:

where they provide some detail on current data as well as projections
through to 2007.

At the very bottom of the page is a link that says:  "Click here to
view the TRENDS 2003 Preview presentation given by Jeff Abraham at BEA
on May 31, 2003"

Click on it.  It opens a PDF file with *a ton* of statistics on book
sales -- dollar amounts as well as numbers of books -- in the
categories I mentioned earlier.

Hope this does the trick for you.  If you have any questions, or if
anything here needs elaboration, just post a Request for
Clarification, and I'll be sure to get back to you with whatever
additional information I can provide.
inventology-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars
Thanks for you persistance. I've gathered some valuable information as
a result of this exercise.

From: morris-ga on 20 Aug 2003 08:54 PDT
Although a little out of date, the following Publishers Weekly article
puts fiction sales at a little over half of all adult book unit sales.
However, those are basically "trade" numbers, which account for only
slightly more than a third of the overall US book market.

The old rule  of thumb is that seven out of eight books published are

Take a look at the following GA answers for info on specific book
title sales.

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