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How Do Publishers Select a Bestselling Book? - Higher Ways Publishing
Higher Ways Publishing - Open Books

As a successful publishing house, at Higher Ways Publishing we know that the manuscript selection process is critical to success. Yet with new technologies available, this is changing rapidly. Higher Ways Publishing look at different ways publishers select a bestselling book.

Traditional process

Traditionally, agents read through hundreds of manuscripts when selecting books to publish. The problem with this approach to bestseller selection is that it is subjective and time consuming. If one agent, with their own view on what makes a good book, is forced to read through numerous manuscripts, they may miss a potential bestseller in the making.

The ultimate example of the problems which are inherent in the traditional manuscript selection process is J.K. Rowling. The woman behind the Harry Potter series, which is now considered one of the most successful book franchises of all time, was rejected by two publishers before her first novel was accepted by Bloomsbury. By failing to vet Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone effectively, the first two publishers missed out on a chance to generate phenomenal revenue.

Selection algorithm

As World Wide Web creator Sir Tim Berners-Lee explained recently, digital technologies are rapidly changing the global publishing industry. Sector portal Good Reader reports that German firm Inkitt has created a new digital technology which could change the way publishers select manuscripts.

Inkitt is an online writing platform which gives “budding writers” the ability to share their books with “inquisitive readers.” The company uses an artificially intelligent algorithm that utilises predictive data to forecast which books possess the best chances to go on and become bestsellers.

Publishing tool

Stating the aim of their algorithm, Inkitt says that its “goal is to remove the middle person so that a blockbuster book is never rejected by a publishing house again.” Here we see how publishing houses can turn the Inkitt platform to their advantage. The algorithm has the ability not only to utilise a number of criteria to determine a bestseller, but to measure audience reaction to specific books, providing them with a valuable market research tool.

There is no one way for publishers to select a bestseller. Reading manuscripts publishers intend to release and promote as books will always serve as the foundation of effective bestseller selection. However with the emergence of online culture, publishers can now utilise digital technologies to enhance the effectiveness of this method and be more successful.

About Higher Ways Publishing

Higher Ways Publishing was established in 2003 by Hayim Oshky and Mike Walden, it helps authors and publishers transform brilliant ideas into commercial success. Headquartered in Tel Aviv Israel and California, they are a market leader in digital and hard-cover publishing for the health, fitness and relationship industries. Higher Ways Publishing have assisted many authors in expanding their online presence in the growing digital marketing world.

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