Well, I know the title of this post is a nasty take on a famous expression, but in essence it is true. With the changes in publishing and the advent of self-publishing, online books, e-books and all manner of electronic reading possibilities, anyone and everyone can become an author in less than thirty minutes. Simply clack out a few words and publish on Kindle, Scribd, Smashwords or any number of e-book publishing sites.
By waiting only a little longer and doing a little more work, it is possible to self-publish in a paperback or hard cover version as well and be issued with a real ISBN number and listed as a published author in less time than it takes to cook a good hot dinner. So, if everyone in the world is, or will be a published author, a few problems may arise.
For one, the ISBN number will need to lengthened to probably 100 digits or more to cope with the publishing avalanche. That might get a bit tricky trying to fit it quietly in the credits page. Then there will be the natural flow on effect to social networking sites and social media generally as everyone who is now an author must promote their new tome to everyone else who is promoting their own masterpiece as well. But as all the people who were readers are now authors, who is going to have the time to read while they are all busy writing and promoting their book?
It may well be a wonderful advancement in literacy as everyone will take a little extra care with their grammar and spelling because they are authors now, but this will hardly matter as no one will have the time to read anyway. Well, except maybe for a quick glance at a grammar reference book.
So what is the future for authors when the whole world is an author?