As the publishing industry continues to fragment into an increasing number of independents (and a shrinking number of giants), there's growing opportunity in connecting those indies with the publishing pros they need to get their books to market.
Blurb is seizing on that opportunity today with the launch of a new marketplace. It's called Dream Team, and Blurb has recruited industry veterans Molly Barton and Richard Nash to run it.
The Dream Team group, operating under the Blurb aegis, is comprised of 50 creative professionals who provide expertise in copy editing, developmental editing, book design, art direction, illustration, photography, cover design, ghostwriting, ebook conversion and more. Authors and businesses can pick and choose their own custom team without having to submit to a package deal.
Team members are spread across the UK/EU, Canada, US and Australia, and are equipped to work on projects in English, French, and Dutch for both print and digital books.
Blurb won't be taking a cut of the deals between authors and the pros, but they will be benefiting from the increased number of projects brought to fruition. Blurb's past research has shown that projects done entirely by a single person have the lowest completion rate.
Some time back Blurb conducted a survey of 40 book projects on the site, and discovered that when an expert is hired to assist on a project, the completion rate tripled to 30%. Hiring a second pro bumped the completion rate to 90%.
The Dream Team marketplace is only in its earliest stages, and Venturebeat says that Blurb plans to let it grow based on the needs of authors:
The marketplace will eventually add new types of collaborators like ghost writers, publishing business managers, marketers, publicists, and more. The idea, Gittins said, is to slowly transform Dream Team into a platform that offers all the services of a traditional book publisher, and then some.
As the Dream Team marketplace grows it will have to outcompete other marketplaces, including the ones run by Reedsy, Bibliocrunch, and Book Machine. That last startup is focused on building an online community of publishing pros through local events in NYC, London, and elsewhere.