Episode 74 – Non-Competes, Speed, and POD Bestsellers with Honoree Corder

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Question of the Week: What’s your best estimate on when the New York Times Bestseller list will either cease to exist or have to change drastically? If it does have to change, what will that change look like?

This week, Jim and Bryan welcomed Honoree Corder, the bestselling author of Prosperity for Writers to the show. They also mentioned their newest Patreon pledges on the air, including Crissy Moss (the author of Witch’s Sacrifice), Marc Gunn (the creator of the Irish & Celtic Music Podcast), Alinka Rutkowska (author of How I Sold 80,000 Books), Parker Hudson (author of On the Edge), Jonathan Small (author of Ascent), and Sandy Williams (author of Shades of Treason). You can contribute to the Patreon page at http://patreon.com/smbs
Jim, Bryan, and Honoree took on a trio of tips about turning your book into a brochure, getting blurbs, and a rule of thumb for marketing budgets. News stories included the Author Solutions settlement, why librarians don’t seek out self-published books, Simon & Schuster’s small entry into KU, the Authors Guild’s campaign against non-competes, Stephen King’s unintentionally pro-indie argument, and the self-publishing print-on-demand #1 worldwide bestseller. This week’s Question of the Week: What’s your best estimate on when the New York Times Bestseller list will either cease to exist or have to change drastically? If it does have to change, what will that change look like?
What You’ll Learn: 
  • Who supported our new Patreon page in the first week
  • How Honoree Corder sold tens of thousands of paperback books
  • A four-step process to get more blurbs for your books
  • How much you should prepare to spend on marketing
  • The amount of money Author Solutions paid in their latest settlement
  • Why librarians don’t accept many self-published books
  • What Simon & Schuster’s foray into KU means
  • How the Authors Guild could succeed at its non-compete campaign
  • Why indies love Stephen King’s NY Times editorial
  • How a children’s book about rabbits has changed the industry
Question of the Week: What’s your best estimate on when the New York Times Bestseller list will either cease to exist or have to change drastically? If it does have to change, what will that change look like?

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  • Connie B. Dowell

    Great show again!
    Question of the Week: It’s hard to make a guess on when the New York Times bestseller list will fade away or make a huge change, but everything in the trad pub world is slow. I imagine sometime in the next ten years, but wouldn’t expect much before then.

    It they were to make a change, I’d bet it would be consolidating lists and not differentiating between hardcover, paperback, mass market, and ebook. A book is a book. The fact that they break it out this way means they are thinking like a printer and distributor, not like readers. As readers, do we think primarily about the books we consumed in terms of their printed format or print vs. ebook or do with think primarily about the content? It’s a delivery method, but the primary value is the content, not the form. To really understand what books are selling well, you can’t break it out arbitrarily by format.

    • Bryan

      I would love it if they thought more like readers. Great point, Connie!

  • I was so happy to find this show on Stitcher. I makes it easier to listen on my phone when I am working out. As for the NYT list? Um, what’s that? 🙂 Aside from writers and publishers, who cares what they think/do? I’ve never used that list to pick a book as I’m pretty sure I can handle the Herculean task of “picking a book” all by myself. Love this show! Cheers.

    • Bryan

      Hahaha, that’s hilarious, Taryn. Thanks so much for the input :).

  • Loved the guest on the show. I know you guys are worried about time, but don’t rush the show. Let the conversations flow. We’ll keep listening. 🙂

    As for the NYT list. I think it’s obvious that it should change, but I don’t think it will. The thing about elitists is that they think they know better than everyone else, so they’ll always think the one who should change is us, not them.

    I think the NYT list will either be replaced by something else more relevant in the next 10 years or be bought out and the NY Times Best Seller title applied to a new list.

    • Bryan

      Good note, Pete! There were some great conversations with Honoree in this one, for sure.

      Darn those elitists!

  • Kim smith

    Who are these people? The NYT and it’s group have no place in the world anymore…we don’t need them to validate our work. Go away!

    • Bryan

      Yeah, give ’em the boot!

      • tazy


  • QOTW – Which list do stores use to show off books? The hardcover list? The NYT has lists for every type of book, so it’s only a big deal if you expect your book to be in a stack in the front of the store.

    For authors who want to brag, they can claim bestseller status by making any of the lists, even when they game the system and sell hundreds of 21 author ebook anthologies.

    • Bryan

      They may game the system, but they work like crazy to make it happen :).

  • Daniel Martone

    I think the best seller list will lose it’s importance in sales as the whole NYT loses relevance. These days, many people get their news from a large variety of online sources… same thing is happening with book recommendations. I’d rather have Book Bub ad then be on their list. It would lead to more sales.

    • Bryan


  • Spider McGee

    As long as there are tight-assed literary snobs, the New York Times Bestseller List will always be. It’s very similar to the way the Billboard Top 100 Singles Chart still exists, the music industry’s own form of reality denial.

    • Bryan

      We must stop the snobs! 🙂

  • I don’t see the NYT bestsellers list disappearing anytime soon, just because most people don’t pay as much attention to what goes on behind the scenes. I have a friend who is an avid reader, who reads books because they’re on the list. For him it’s a sign of a quality book.

    Unfortunately, I think a lot of people feel the same way. So I’d say it has at least five years left, if not more.

    • Bryan

      Yeah, I suppose some people just can’t get with the times :).

  • Eddie Jakes

    I don’t think it will go away and I don’t think it should either. I think Indie publishing will penetrate the snobbery and will be taken seriously in time.