As first reported by PW Daily and now picked up by Ed Nawotka at Bloomberg, Bantam Dell has announced that it is the latest publisher to set up shop in the virtual world of Second Life. Fittingly, they’ve chosen Dean Koontz and his newest novel THE GOOD GUY (slated for publication on May 29) as their launch title there. At 9 PM tonight, Koontz will give a virtual reading from the book, assisted by a pair of Bantam Dell employee avatars with the literary-sounding names of Beatrice Scintilla (really Betsy Hulsebosch, senior vice president and director of creative marketing) and Horatio Ruggles.
Since its creation by Linden Lab in 2003, Second Life, a 3-D online world in which people roam a fictitious but familiar environment in the form of digital avatars — that is, computer representations that look, walk and misbehave much like real human beings, has attracted more than 4 million users worldwide.”We think Second Life represents the next dimension of social networking,” Hulsebosch said to Nawotka. “It’s three-dimensional. You physically create the world around you. We think the people who are drawn to that sort of experience would also be drawn to books.”