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An Opportunity for Publishers...

Evidence from Chad Orzel that publishers need to rethink their business:

Uncertain Principles: Brandon Sanderson, Elantris [Library of Babel]: When Brandon Sanderson's debut novel, Elantris first appeared on store shelves, I was tempted to buy it. It had a lot of things going for it: good review quotes, a striking cover, an interesting description, and it's published by Tor, who are usually pretty reliable. I couldn't quite figure out, though, whether it was the first book in a series or not, and I'd really rather not commit to another long fantasy series if it can be avoided.

It strikes me here is an opportunity for publishers. They should start new lines of books. Each book in this new line should commit to telling a complete story, with no important plot threads left hanging or major puzzles left unsolved.

They could call these books, I don't know, "novels."