Authors can dream a slightly different dream as of today. In the airy moments between feverish typing fits, they can imagine their books reaching the New York Times E-Book Best-Seller List, which the paper will begin publishing early next year.
In an acknowledgment of the growing sales and influence of digital publishing, The New York Times said on Wednesday that it would publish e-book best-seller lists in fiction and nonfiction beginning early next year.
The lists will be compiled from weekly data from publishers, chain bookstores, independent booksellers and online retailers, among other sources.
Since 1935 The Times has published best-seller lists, widely considered the industry standard. Best-seller lists are also published by Publishers Weekly, a trade publication, and newspapers including The Los Angeles Times and USA Today. Janet Elder, the editor of news surveys and election analysis for The Times, said the newspaper had spent two years creating a system that tracks and verifies e-book sales.
"We've had our eye on e-book sales since e-books began," Ms. Elder said. "It was clear that e-books were taking a greater and greater share of total sales, and we wanted to be able to tell our readers which titles were selling and how they fit together with print sales."
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