I’m honored to be Scott Kelby’s publisher and proud to publish Scott’s books under both the Peachpit Press and New Riders imprints. Today I have a piece of exciting and important news to share with you that hasn’t been made public yet, so you’re the first to know.

Drum roll, please…
The numbers are in, and for 2010, your friend and mine, Mr. Scott Kelby, has been recognized as the top-selling photography book author! This has been confirmed according to Nielsen BookScan, which is the industry standard for tracking the book industry’s sales.

Congratulations, Scott, so well deserved. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I can’t tell you how amazing it is to work with someone who has consistently written so many best-selling books that truly transform people’s lives. In my entire publishing career, I’ve not seen any single author make and beat so many industry records. You’re an inspiration to all of us. (And hats off to the incredibly talented team at Kelby Media, too. Simply a joy to work with all of you!)

Publishing Industry Insights:
For those of you who are interested in this kind of stuff, I’ll give you a little background. For many years, the photography book category on Nielsen BookScan had been limited largely to books about “traditional” photography. Sales of most of the top books didn’t come close to sales of the top books in the much larger computer book category (a neighboring category, because that’s where all Photoshop books and some Lightroom books reside, for example). Even when DSLRs started coming down in price and the number of amateur hobbyists and serious shooters hit critical mass, still no single general digital photography book seemed to lead the pack in any significant numbers.

Until 2006
That’s the year Scott’s wildly popular The Digital Photography Book was published. It was—and continues to be—an incredible success. In my business, we call that a “breakout” book. A “barnburner.” It sets the bar for the whole category. Scott set that bar while still holding the Number One position in the computer book category (six years in a row!). As Scott’s leadership in the photography category grew, he/we made a strategic decision to move away from more general computer books (a hard decision given how many best-sellers he was authoring in that space—remember The iPod Book?). Anyway, it turned out to be a brilliant decision. Scott puts tons of passion and hard work into his photography and Photoshop books, and he hits them all out of the ballpark. He’s helped millions of shooters all over the world improve their skills, grow their business, and get the shot.

But there’s more…
What’s really interesting about the 2010 results is that the number of actual copies of Scott’s books sold in the photography category alone exceeded the total number of books sold by any author in the computer book category. And if you add the number of books Scott sold both in the photography category AND in the computer category, he soars above any author in either category by more than 50%. Any way you slice it, Scott is making a lasting and meaningful impact on a whole lot of people’s lives and livelihoods.

Again, Scott, congratulations on being the #1 photography book author for 2010. Here’s to many more years of best-selling books, happy readers, and being #1!

-Nancy Aldrich-Ruenzel
Publisher, Peachpit Press and New Riders