The persons responsible for formulating policies, selection of authors, material and even length of composition have to rethink their approach in a world of downloads and actual shop retail of short works that appeal to the masses. In a world where people allocate brief time slots of private indulgence to reward themselves, in between chores and paid work, there is a need for small bites of entertainment.
Short stories, one hour programmes, games, daily puzzles, these are the items that will resonate with the majority of people. Not long winded voluminous works that deter just by their sheer size. The paperbacks gave a boost to the publishing industry. So did comics. Short fiction, poetry and non fiction deserve their place in the priority list of publishing powers that be. Putting 50,000 words as an entry level is not the method of sifting through the slush pile. It becomes its own slush. Open the gates to all genres and then sort them. The digital age has already commenced. Why should publishing still plod along with 50 000 word length requirements and why should only the novel be the recognisable form of literature? There is a host of short stories, novellas, comics, play scripts that qualify as literature for the masses and we dare say, some fit for all ages lodged in that bulk.
From the pile of independently released work, surely there will be something that the established publishing imprints can acquire and market.