BookTour.com is closing

While on the subject of eBooks, and changes in technology, I just got an email announcing that BookTour.com is closing. I was one of the first to welcome them when they came on the scene a couple of years ago, and for a while they seemed to be striking just the right chord.

To quote from their email:

“We regret to inform you that BookTour will be shutting down….fewer author tours and changes in book marketing budgets have made our company financially unviable.”

While stores like Borders are closing and ceding territory to Amazon and other eBook vendors, the emerging market for eBooks has put a premium on online promotion and virtual book tours, not to mention social media in general.

For book publicists this is a new wrinkle in the terrain, and raises further the question of what role publishers, publicists, book chains, and Indies will be playing in the new market.

Kindle Million Club: Janet Evanovich Joins the Elite Group

We learned recently that Janet Evanovich has broken through selling more than one million Kindle copies of her books. This distinction was noted on Galleycat today. Other traditional authors who have sold that many kindle eBooks include Nora Roberts, Stieg Larsen, Lee Child, James Patterson, Michael Connelly, and Charlaine Harris, and Katheryn Stocket, author of The Help.

Ms. Evanovich’s latest Stephanie Plum Novel Smokin Seventeen has been on the best-selling Kindle list for over 100 days.

These are the mainstream authors, but for 99 cents each independent author John Locke’s million books sold have earned him a comfortable cushion that leaves many mid list and even top-selling authors in awe.

Current trends suggest that close to 15% of all Americans own an eBook reader like the Kindle.  With Harry Potter riding the eBook broomstick, the die seems to be cast, especially for the next generation of readers.

I for one welcome the changes, and think it may be a good way for psychologists to get useful self-help and other information to the public, and health care professionals everywhere should see the value as a preventative intervention.

More importantly, we are still in the first wave of innovation. With advances in the technology, the Kindle eBooks should become much more interactive, and include links to important web supplements, and begin to blur the entertainment boundaries to include music, games, and social media components.