Are There Too Many Books Out There?

too many books

I posted a poll to both here and on Twitter to garner how many thought if there were too many writers and not enough readers.  Majority of those who responded (around 74%) believed that there were more than enough readers for all the books now out there.

Okay, let’s delve a bit deeper and look at some of the statistics that I’ve managed to find.

According to one article, in 2013 at least 28 million books were published in English.  It looks like this included both traditional and self-published “print” titles.  The article went on to state that in 2003 the number of books in print were only around one million titles.  Kind of put things in perspective on just how much things have exploded since the early 2000’s.

I pulled up the Worldometers’ site, its clocking the world population at around 7.4 billion.  North America has 360 million, Europe at 738 million, Africa 1.2 billion; but Asia takes the crown at well over 4.4 billion.

Of the 7.4 billion, nearly 1 billion are illiterate.

Another sobering number to look at is that at least 3 billion of the world population lives in poverty; many of these may not have access to books because of the condition they live in.

This still leaves a good chunk of people as readers, right?

How many of the remaining population actually spends the time reading books in all honesty?  With people working more hours each week, and with various technology distractions, the number of people reading seems to be on the decline.

It seems that the challenge facing writers these days is trying to get people to read their work.  With so many published titles out there (and mind you, these numbers do not include digital ones), how does a writer go about doing that?

Any thoughts?




  1. It’s sad that in 2016 there are still so many who have been deprived of basic reading skills. Reading is so important! Our brains need to be challenged and reading is a great way to do that 🙂 I consider myself lucky that I always loved and still love reading as well as the opportunity to do so. I love writing as well but as you mentioned, the market is so saturated now with writers how do you get people to read your work? In the “blogosphere” at least, the way I like to attract readers is by by reading their work and contributing my thoughts because at the end of the day we all want to connect! You get what you give in the writing/reading world I believe. I love that the internet has given people an avenue they never really had before but at the same time I still love a good paperback or hardcover….just can’t seem to appreciate Kindle and the like. Great post! Glad we have crossed paths 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • I was somewhat amazed as to how high the illiterate numbers still were even in this day and age. Like you I consider myself fortunate to have learned to read at a young age which really fueled my imagination as a kid (and got me into trouble in the process!). Through reading, I became a writer. The internet is a wonderful tool for connecting with other writers and readers 🙂 Thanks so much for stopping by…I’m glad we’ve crossed paths too! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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