How the publishing industry has changed

The publishing industry has changed a lot—especially on the traditional side—throughout this pandemic. So, I’m going to break down some of the most impactful changes up to date.

Please note that this post is about traditional publishing. So, when talking about editors, it’s in-house editors instead of freelance editors.

Longer wait times to hear back from literary agents

Some literary agents are on top of it still, but for the most part, it can now take up to eight months to hear back from an agent. Most agents are saying to be patient with them. They usually read query letters after hours, after all.

Lighthearted books

A lot of agents and editors are looking for lighthearted books at the moment. They want books filled with joy and humor. 


Publishers split books between those who get the most marketing and those who get good marketing. That gap has become wider with some books getting one to three months of marketing before their release, instead of the usual six.

Lower supply

More warehouses have less staff due to covid. Or paper stock is low. Or not enough shipping crates. Etc.

So many submissions

Agents and editors have mentioned that submission numbers have increased since the pandemic. Some editors have expressed that they don’t have enough time to read everyone’s submission. Some agents still have not responded to writers from last year. 

Overall, the publishing industry is pushing forward through these tough times. But if this industry has done anything over the last hundreds of years, it’s endure and adapt.

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