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Are Independent Bookshops the Future of Literature in the Age of Bookstore Closures?

Just this week I received an email from Draft-2-Digital promoting their print-on-demand service. They've offered print-on-demand before, they are primarily a digital (e-book) platform. They're attempting to put a positive spin on the dominance of printed books, offering this chart.

Although it is somewhat confusing, and some information on it is irrelevant, it cannot be denied that printed books are - and have always been - significantly outselling e-books.

Check Amazon's distribution of various book format by sales the truth becomes clearer and clearer:

Print editions have, and continue, to outsell any other format.

The trend cannot be denied. Printed books have always outsold e-books, and are consistently gaining ground.


Costco Kanata (among other Costcos) will no longer be selling or carrying books. Reasons cited are that people are purchasing books, reading the books, and then returning the books for a full refund due to Costco's return policy (which they are clearly not willing to change). (And an inside source from Indigo has confided to me that Costco is one of their biggest competitors).

As of March 9th, 2024, Coles Billings Bridge Plaza will be permanently closing their doors (and I will be specifically addressing this in a future post) as Indigo struggles through their identity-crisis. With a few further closures scheduled within the city as well.

The retail-literary landscape of Ottawa and surrounding regions are a changing!

The 2024 Faces of Ottawa Awards category of Best Book Store, ALL 11 finalists are independent bookshops, not one Coles, Indigo, or Chapters finalists. To my knowledge, for the first time since the Faces of Ottawa Awards inception (12 years?) has the big-box-bookstores not make this list.

Independent bookshops are growing, thriving, and new stores opening.

Do I think the book industry is in trouble? No. No, I don't. I believe the day of the big-box-bookstore is over.

And as we enter this new and changing literary landscape, so too do we see the advent of Sustainable Publishing©

  • It's counter-intuitive

  • it means as of March 2024 Broken Keys Publishing no longer publish e-books

  • it means printed books breathe oxygen into the atmosphere

  • it means e-books poison our environment

  • it means local bookstores that support Sustainable Publishing© will not sell e-books

  • it means local bookstores that support Sustainable Publishing© will not sell e-readers

  • it means a better and cleaner environment

Are you ready to reclaim our future? Are you ready to change the world?

The answer's in our hands.


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Best Printing Company 2024

Broken Keys Publishing is proud to announce, we have won The 2024 Ottawa Awards in the category of Ottawa's Best Printing Company


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