Creators on TikTok are fighting for a more diverse book world — and running into some deep-seated problems in the industry.
BookTok, a TikTok community of readers, reviewers, and authors, has redefined publishing’s relationship with book content creators.
Since its rise in popularity in 2020, the group has been directly responsible for millions of book sales, hundreds of trending conversations around new releases, and an organic word-of-mouth marketing structure that has publishing entities desperate to get a piece of the action.
In 2022, BookTok darling Colleen Hoover even outsold the Bible by at least 3 million units. But a new wave of growth from BookTok has seen less prioritized issues like compensation, diversity, and collaboration with publishers become major sticking points. Yet BookTok creators say that while the community continues to have a bigger footprint in the book world, a failure to diversify could mean its eventual downfall.
In November, FutureBook, a publishing trade conference, named BookTook as its Person of the Year, noting that creators’ passion for books has directly impacted millions in sales.
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