2012 is over and thank goodness—not exactly a prosperous year for many of us. For Christmas this year, I gave the grand-kids a couple of plastic scoops and told them the cat’s litter box was a buried treasure game. Not only were they disappointed, but it looks like I wasted a lot of time making the cat swallow all those nickels. Sigh.
But now it is time to look forward to the new year with my proprietary blend of hopeful optimism and innate revulsion at change. I have fired up the old crystal ball. Remember, I’m 90% right 50% of the time. Here is my list of predictions for the coming year:
1. Social Media
Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus will merge into one giant social media platform, reaching tens of millions of the same people they were reaching before, except there will be even more annoying ads. The new Platform will be called Facetwiggle Plus. People will migrate en masse back to MySpace.
2. Amazon Policy Changes
Mounting pressure will force Amazon to reconsider the mass removal of reviews that occurred in 2012. However, they will determine in a new policy that the publisher and author of a book cannot be the same person, as this could represent some collusion or conflict. As a result, the reviews will be restored, but all self-published books will be removed. Amazon will not comment on the new policy.
2013 will see the launch of the Kindle 3D. It will look just like the letters are jumping off the screen at you. Later that day, they will wonder why anyone would want that and will recall the product. Nook will launch the Nook Shadowbox, an eReader with two holes in it for finger puppets. When the public discovers the finger puppets are sold separately, sales will plummet. Apple will release a new tablet, but nobody will be able to find it online because Microsoft Internet Explorer will have had enough of that by then and won’t take users to Apple sites.
4. Hot Trends
Researchers at M.I.T. discover a correlation between the number of an author’s initials and their book sales. As a result, K.S.S.S. Brooks becomes the first indie author to sell a billion copies of her book, The Mr. Pish Games. Later in the year, she will be outsold by J.A.A.A.A. Konrath’s trillion-selling book, How I Sold a Trillion Copies of My Book.
5. Big Publishing
Government anti-trust actions break up the Big Six publishing houses into twelve smaller publishing houses that later merge into six publishing houses. The government proclaims victory. Random McMillan and Penguin House offer no comment.
In mid-year, the Meatgrinder becomes self-aware and begins taking over the world. Due to an NCX error, it settles for just making out with Facetwiggle Plus for a couple of hours and then goes back to sleep. When it wakes up, it is covered with ads.
7. Brick and Mortar Book Stores
K.S.S.S. Brooks buys out Barnes and Noble, but sells off Nook to B. Dalton. Starbucks and B. Dalton partner to re-engineer the Nook into the first hybrid eReader and espresso maker. They are later sued out of existence by a little old lady who steamed her own lap while reading Return of the Revenge of the Curse of the Son of the Bride of 50 Shades, by E.L.L.L. James.
8. Sales and Marketing
Facetwiggle Plus takes over all sales and marketing for all products until D.V.V.V. Berkom and T.D.D.D. McKinnon discover the most effective advertising appears to be having your book’s title tattooed on a supermodel’s body. This practice is brought to a halt when a supermodel dies of ink poisoning while having Return of the Revenge of the Curse of the Son of the Bride of 50 Shades tattooed on her body.
Altogether, it looks like a pretty uneventful year. I mean, who couldn’t have seen all this coming? Seriously. Oh well, maybe 2014 will be more interesting.