Lifespan of a 2nd Print Run...a Couple of Months?

Publishers Weekly reports on the additional print-on-demand run for 'Sarah: How a Hockey Mom Turned Alaska’s Political Establishment Upside Down'.

Epicenter Publisher Kent Sturgis expects interest in the book to remain strong "at least through the vice presidential debate set for October 7."


The original title of this post was "Lifespan of a 2nd Edition...a Couple of Months?"

I commented that the book was not on a second edition but on a second printing. The title was then changed to "Lifespan of a 2nd Print Run...a Couple of Months?"

Print runs don't really have lifespans. Editions have lifespans. The lifespan ends when a new edition comes out. My point being that nowhere does the article use the term lifespan. The article does say that the publisher expects interest in the book to remain strong at least through the vice presidential debate set for October 7.

Interest in the book and the lifespan of a book are two different things. Sales of the Palin book will not drop to zero after October 7 but they will decrease. As the presidential campaign wears on interest in the books by any of the candidates will decrease. Any books about Biden will probably also sell less after October 7.

What point were you trying to make with your title?

was to report on a story first reported by Publishers Weekly about an increase in the number of copies available of the book and the fact that even the publisher of the book predicted that it would probably prove popular for maybe eight more weeks. Period.

For a book of this sort, POD, the terms "edition" and "print run" does not really have any significance. Those terms apply to more traditional publishing methods.

However, I modified the headline in response to your initial comment, which I did not think was really applicable to the story, but was meant as a dig at this author. Maybe you'd like to post a story on publishing terminology?

The comment on "edition" vs. "print" run was not meant as a dig on you. The title of the LISNEWS piece did seem to be a dig on the book about Palin. (At least in my view and that is why I was commenting)

In regards to POD publishing "edition" and "print run" are still completely different terms.

A book is written called "Example Book". The book is published using POD technology. Because it is POD, books are printed as the orders come in. Or in the case of the Palin book they print 10,000 or 20,000 copies at a time because of demand. No matter how many copies are printed this is still a 1st edition book.

The edition changes when changes to the book are made. If a chapter is added or removed or some content is changed and then the book is printed again that is a 2nd edition.

When changes are made to content then "Example Book" will be "Example Book 2nd edition".

Here is the definition of the word "edition" from the "Independent Online Booksellers Glossary"

EDITION: All of the copies of a book printed from the same setting of type, at one time or over a period of time, with no major changes, additions or revisions. Minor changes, such as the correction of some misspelled words, or the addition of a dedication, or similar very minor alterations, may be made and the revised copies are still considered as part of the same edition, simply being described as different states or issues. (Source:

Alibris also has an online book terms gloassary. It defines "edition" this way:

edition - All copies of a book that are printed from the same plates or one setting of type. An edition can have more than one printing. For example, if 300 copies of a book are printed on September 15, and 200 copies are printed from the same plates on November 24, all 500 copies are part of the same edition. (Source:

I don't see how POD publishing destroys the concept of "edition". It does change "print run" because historically print runs started in the hundreds for small publishers and large publishers would have print runs in the thousands or tens of thousands but with POD a print run can be one book.

Subscribe to Comments for "Lifespan of a 2nd Print Run...a Couple of Months?"