Publishing: Record number of new books

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The Independent Online
British publishers now issue more than 100,000 new titles and new editions every year, but some kinds of serious fiction and non-fiction face the toughest market for decades. Newly compiled figures show that 101,504 books appeared from British firms in 1996, a 7.1 per cent increase on the previous year.

The steepest rise came in the booming technical and business sectors, with 30 per cent more legal titles and 21 per cent more computer books. New fiction accounts for less than 5 per cent of the grand total. The year saw the arrival of more new computing titles (3,515) than of biographies (3,292). And software manuals alone (with 2,569 titles) exceeded the total for all poetry books (2,311).