According to a Wall Street Journal blog, it’s not a good thing for the publishing industry.
“Oprah Winfrey has supported many authors, and her book club has had a huge impact on America’s reading habits,” added Ms. Shanley [a partner in the consulting firm Market Partners International Inc.]. “She made Faulkner a best seller again. She also promoted an eclectic group of authors and created publishing successes for many commercial writers.”Oprah didn’t start off promoting books and she seems to have slacked off in the past year or so, but during the hay day of books on her show, she changed the way people read and find out about books. When she chose a book or author, she promoted it/him-or-her on her show and on her blog. She gave the book her seal of approval, both through her words and through her official seal that went on the cover of the book.
It’s rather doubtful there will be someone who can match her in making books overnight best-sellers. I don’t get cable, so I have no idea who’s on there. On the regular network channels, the only person I see close to her kind of following is Ellen DeGeneres. Maybe she or someone will take up the cause and promote writers and reading.
It would be nice for writers to have that dream of one day appearing on THE show that would catapult them to the best-seller list.