British publishing market, like U.S.’s, dominated by nonfiction

Sam Leith considers the fiction-to-nonfiction ratio of Britain’s book market:

Only about 10 per cent of the commercial titles published each year are fiction, and fiction accounts for only about a quarter of retail sales. We talk about fiction incessantly – the Man Booker Prize, for example, continues to bear far more prestige, and attract far more excitement, than its non-fiction equivalent, the Samuel Johnson – but it is non-fiction, as a nation, that we are actually reading.


You might want to subscribe to my free Substack newsletter, Ancestor Trouble, if the name makes intuitive sense to you.