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Old 08-20-2014, 04:17 PM   #1
Katsunami
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"New York Times best-selling author"

Does this have any meaning nowadays?

Thinking about it, I see it on about every English book in (e)stores. It could even be the case that I *DON'T* have any books *WITHOUT* this recommendation, apart from non-English books and classics.
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Old 08-20-2014, 04:42 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katsunami View Post
Does this have any meaning nowadays?

Thinking about it, I see it on about every English book in (e)stores. It could even be the case that I *DON'T* have any books *WITHOUT* this recommendation, apart from non-English books and classics.
That phrase has meant nothing to me for a long time....of course, aside from crossword puzzles, the phrase "New York Times *fill in the blank*" has meant nothing to me for a long time also!
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Old 08-20-2014, 05:21 PM   #3
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It has never meant anything to me. Most of the authors I like do not make the list and even if they did I would not care.
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Old 08-20-2014, 05:29 PM   #4
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It means about as much to me as 'Dirty Socks Now Cleaned - Special This August.'
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Old 08-20-2014, 05:42 PM   #5
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"New York Times best-selling author"

I have never bought a NY Times best-selling author. I am told they make very unpleasant pets; have a high opinion of themselves, are argumentative, eat a lot, untidy, and poop around the house.

How many authors do they sell a month?
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Old 08-20-2014, 05:57 PM   #6
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Nope. Hasn't meant much to be in a VERY VERY long time. In fact, it would mean that I would probably avoid them now. I am more into Indie authors for the last few years.
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Old 08-20-2014, 06:24 PM   #7
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Most of my favorite authors never made the list - Verne, Poe, Hawthorne, Dickens, Haggard, etc.
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Old 08-20-2014, 07:52 PM   #8
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I thnk "best selling" is relative myself. I mean what criteria is being used? If one publisher has 10 authors and one of them sells 50 copies of a book and another publisher has 500 authors and one of them sells 1000000 copies of a book then both authors (in the eyes of their publisher) are best selling authors.
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Old 08-20-2014, 08:36 PM   #9
Tarana
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Quote:
I mean what criteria is being used?
There is a criteria. I just don't remember what it was. I'm sure wikipedia can explain.

I find the list useful to see what is currently popular and I sometimes select a book or author to read from the listing. Sci-fi and fantasy rarely make the list because they are primarily a niche market (I know...hard to believe). Whether you use the lists or not is really a matter of personal reading and is just one way to select new authors to read.
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Old 08-20-2014, 08:37 PM   #10
fjtorres
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Totally meaningless:
http://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffberc...tsellers-list/

Quote:

ResultSource, a San Diego-based marketing consultancy, specializes in getting books onto bestseller lists, according to The Wall Street Journal. For clients willing to pay enough, it will even guarantee a No. 1 spot. It does this by taking bulk sales and breaking them up into more organic-looking individual purchases, defeating safeguards that are supposed to make it impossible to “buy” bestseller status.
More, the NYT only looks at select bookstores so the people who know which stores they track, gaming the system is way cheaper, especially for non-fiction and specialty categories where a couple thousand sales in the right stores can guarantee a number one rating.

Even without gaming, it is possible to hit number one through preorders alones by launching during the slow summer season when no nane-brand author books are launched.

All the list reports is peak sales *recorded* in one week. Which can be done with high 4-figures. If the book never sells a single copy after that week, it still can boast of NYT bestsellerdom. Conversely, a book could sell a million copies over a couple years and never get annointed.

Lecturing gurus routinely buy their own books to buy their way onto the list and then sell them at full list at their lectures so the Bestseller tag comes for free.

Last edited by fjtorres; 08-20-2014 at 08:49 PM.
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Old 08-20-2014, 08:50 PM   #11
SteveEisenberg
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I count 22 different lists, as can be seen in the left panel here:

http://www.nytimes.com/best-sellers-...ence/list.html

The above science bestseller list has twenty titles, but most of them have twenty-five. This makes for a lot of New York Times bestselling authors.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Katsunami View Post
It could even be the case that I *DON'T* have any books *WITHOUT* this recommendation, apart from non-English books and classics.
Yes, for the reason noted above. But if marked as follows, it's almost a dis-recommendation:

Quote:
A dagger (†) indicates that some bookstores report receiving bulk orders.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jersysman View Post
I am more into Indie authors for the last few years.
They do list a few titles where the name of the author and publisher are the same.

I think the reason they don't list more self-published eBooks is lack of input from Amazon.

Somewhat strangely, the Bezos-owned Washington Post's bestseller lists don't include eBooks:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinio...6a3_story.html
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Old 08-20-2014, 09:10 PM   #12
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I check the NYT bestseller list to see what is popular reading "Across the Pond" but it rarerly informs my purchasing choices, but neither do the bestseller lists in my country. Bestseller lists, for me, are more of a novelty/curiosity factor because I rarely find anything I want to read on them.
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Old 08-20-2014, 09:11 PM   #13
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I'd love to be one! I would find that rather meaningful. ☺
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Old 08-21-2014, 09:33 AM   #14
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I guess it means quite a few people probably liked some of the author's previous books.

That might not mean anything specifically useful, but it might mean that you are a bit more willing to take a risk on something if other people like it.

It's obviously significant enough to be worth putting on the cover.
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Old 08-21-2014, 10:14 AM   #15
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It doesn't determine what I buy or read, but it means something when I'm browsing through hundreds of book titles, especially when the author is unknown to me.
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