Resources and tips for the self-published author.

Publishing News Roundup Series: The NYT Bestseller List Gets Rigged

by Maureen Crisp •  September 5, 2017  •   Follow

Published in News  •  No comments

It always amazing for an author to get their book on the NYT bestseller list. That’s why it hurts so much when statistics are rigged and an author loses their chance to be on the list.

By rigging the numbers, authors who were supposed to be on the list get pushed out of their opportunity. Lying about what readers want only hurts the market in the end. It produces a false understanding of what readers want to read. And this hurts not only publishers, but readers too.


Fake News

 Pic: Flickr Creative Commons – NASA Goddard Space Flight Centre- The false colour of Mercury using mineral and chemical imaging.

This week started with a hiss and a roar when the New York Times Best Seller list came out.  A book no one had heard of had hit number one! Then, in a fascinating real time take down by YA authors and literary detectives, the story came out through Twitter. And what a story! Read it as it happened and then read the wise advice of Kris Rusch who has seen it all before.


The USA today list is calculated purely on sales so it’s always interesting when an author keeps hitting it. What are they doing right? Here is how one author achieved it three times.


Last week I linked to Hugh Howey’s Part One and Two of his excellent mini series of posts on writing insights- written while aboard his boat floating in the Pacific with turtles.. (Not jealous not jealous not jea…)  Part Three and Part Four
are just as good.


Ahh Canada… home to amazing wildlife, amazing syrup, amazing writers and … Wattpad. But wait… Wattpad is introducing a new video storytelling app, Raccoon. Think video serial stories in real time…


Joanna Penn posted an interesting interview with Sarah Painter on how writers can overcome fear and self doubt. This is well worth a listen or read the transcript.


This week Hollywood Reporter looked at a case going to trial on who actually owns the name Jack Ryan. Was it the Tom Clancy’s estate or the film company or the widow or no one?  Can a character name be copyrighted?


Alli – or The Alliance of Independent Authors is gearing up for the next and last 24 hour online fringe conference. Each conference has a theme and the upcoming one is all about author business. This is well worth signing up for … and its free!


Sean Platt has his fingers in many writing pies along with other creative endeavors like the Smarter Artists summit. Here is his ten point plan on how to make a living as an Indie author. Writing an amazing book is not at number one… (When I sit down to write I always hear Sean’s voice saying … First Know Your Why!)

In The Craft Section,

Weaving back story into front story– James Scott Bell – Bookmark
Create an idea bank– Ruth Harris- Bookmark
How to slow time for more relaxed writing sessions – Elizabeth Spann Craig- Bookmark
2 great posts from Janice Hardy – Conflict – Why it isn’t about fighting and Creating Unique Characters. – Bookmark

In The Marketing Section,

The Visibility Gambit– David Gaughran- Bookmark
Ultimate guide to creating a media kit- Chris Well (This is part 4 but you should read all the other parts.)
437 Book Marketing tips– Derek Murphy

To Finish,

Nathan Bransford has been cranking up his blog again on all things writerly. This week he asked Mike Shatzkin about the next horror nightmare for publishing… What if Barnes and Noble closed down….




About Maureen Crisp

Maureen Crisp has been writing her weekly publishing roundups for over seven years. She is a traditionally published children's author as well as indie-published. She lives in New Zealand and is heading the team organising the 4th National Conference of Children's Writers and Illustrators. She is currently trying her hand at writing a children’s book series if she can drag herself away from forever tweaking her Mars novel or obsessing over space.