Best-sellers Lists: How They Work and Who They (mostly) Work For – The Sacramento Bee – Allen Pierleoni
How do books make it onto best-seller lists in the first place? The answers are elusive.
“The creation of a best-seller list is the most nebulous thing you will ever encounter,” said Paul Takushi, book promotions and marketing manager for the UC Davis Store. “No one really knows how it’s done.”
How the New York Times figures its lists is nearly as secret as, say, the recipe for Coca-Cola.
Book Review staff editor Gregory Cowles explained in an email: “(The formula) is a secret both to protect our product and to make sure people can’t try to rig the system. Even in the Book Review itself, we don’t know (the news surveys department’s) precise methods.”
Formulas!! Timing!! Hollywood!! Oh my.
In all seriousness, it’s much more complicated than that. Fascinating read, check it out! See if you can predict which books (once published, of course) will become instant hits.