As a manager, I realize that I have been pointing out flaws with Traditional Publishing since I have E-Published my first book in January 2011, and started my blog.
As a manager of a corporation I don't mind hearing about problems, as a matter of fact, it is a big part of my job to identify and solve problems as they are identified! So I especially love it when an employee or customer points out a problem but furthermore provides a possible solution to the problem.
If I were a manager at a large Publishing House, seeing what I am seeing in the industry, I would propose this as a possible solution!
What the publishers have to offer is Professional Editing, Professional Cover Art Production, and the advertising and marketing to get a book professionally launched. The fact that the book will be a real book can be done very easily by Indie Authors through Createspace, so that is not really a big selling point anymore.
So as a manager of a Large Publishing House I would take the following steps.
A. Create a website, or multiple sites where Indie Books are reviewed and promoted on these sites for FREE! You will be swamped with people wanting their books reviewed. Indie Authors will give their books away to have them reviewed and even marginally promoted on a site!
B. Hire a team of people (on line, around the world) who are prolific readers of different Genres.
1. They have to actually be able to read the books and give fair and accurate reviews of books in a timely manner.
2. They should be provided with a list of interview questions for the author to include the answers to some of the questions on the site with the review.
3. These reviewers Primary mission will be to sift through the crap and find the diamonds in the rough who they will immediately contact the publishing house to go and present them with an offer to re-release their book with the professional services they can provide and an option to work with the author on their upcoming books.
C. Sign up talented authors who need editing and artwork to make their books better. Realizing when the author gets bigger and better and has the money to hire other editing or artwork themselves that you may lose them entirely in the future. If you do a good job with this influx of new business, making good matches of Author to Editor, successful book launches this will help turn the tide for quite some time. This effectively cancels out the literary agent unless the author hires an agent after being signed. The agent, publisher, query letter, synopsis crap coupled with lawyers and contracts is why this industry is so screwed up in the first place.
D. One solution for agents may be for the Publisher to assign agents to the clients who work for the publisher. Each agent works to help manage the authors assigned to them without the need to actively sell the work to a publisher.
It's just a thought! I think too much, partly because I read about as much as I write, which is kind of a lot!