Before the printed word as we know today, the number of books written was quite small. You couldn’t have bestseller topping a bestseller list mainly because every book was just that — a single book. If you wanted copies — no strike that out, if you want “a” copy, you would have to commission someone to do it for you. Then seek the book owner — or writer of the book — get permission to copy the text of the book, pay to send and house the person you commissioned to copy the text — provided the owner agreed without putting down outlandish demands for this.
Getting your hands on a copy
In a way, the person who would be printing your book was an earlier version of an on demand printer. These print on demand method suited the readers of the time in general, because come to think of it reading and writing was an elitist pastime. And by the time you are in demand printer got your copy ready, you’d probably be dead. The only good thing that could possibly come out of this would be that the print on demand method did was make your library exclusive with only one of a kind copy of the books in your collection.
Supply is directly proportionate to demand
Common sense tells us that the demand of something increases its supply. So when more and more people received education, the more people wanted reading material. Waiting your turn to read a book which could have a dozen people waiting in line already could be quite frustrating, since it would have to be written by hand. This would take ages but you would have to bide your time patiently. The demand increases and the printers can’t keep up pace and then some great mind thinks why not change the process and produce more reading material. While short-run printing was quite sufficient for the low demand, it was imperative to change this to long-run printing, especially for newspapers. Short-run printing; short-run book printing and short-run magazine printing are more appropriate for those who cater to a small group. Short-run book printing and short-run magazine printing and in today’s age short-run digital printing and small run book printing is the way to go. Short-run digital printing and small run book printing allow more people access to more material.
Life of the avid reader was one of leisure but as time went by one would hear of a good play by someone called Shakespeare. And suddenly one day you realized your uncle up in the North wants to read the much-celebrated play. That’s when you asked the Atlanta printers to make you a copy or two while they were at it. The Atlanta printers do such a good job that you can’t wait to show off their abilities to others. Word spreads and an eager crowd flocks the printers.