Via Shelf Awareness, O’Reilly—the lovely people who put on the great conference everyone was talking about*—now has a publishing blog to discuss how “technology is transforming publishing.” I must read for everyone wanting to discuss the newest innovations.
From A Chair, A Fireplace and A Tea Cozy, I got this link to Directory Aviva’s 12 Important U.S. Laws Every Blogger Needs To Know. Since I’m not a lawyer I cannot testify to the veracity of this information, but I would love to hear from someone who is. Aviva does a great job of laying out the guidelines in manner that makes them easy to follow (or at least make you realize what you are willing to ignore).
I can’t remember where I read about this first (so we’ll use the Galleycat article instead), but this story just makes me happy. Yeehodi.com, the “website for hardcore hep cat swingers,” rallied around Frankie Manning’s memoir, Frankie Manning: Ambassador of the Lindy Hop, and created a video of his footwork to urge people to buy the book so that Frankie would be #1 on Amazon’s bestseller list on his birthday. Not only is this a great example of the targeted marking that MJ Rose talked about in her interview, but look how happy he looks in all the video clips! I guess it is true, it don’t mean a thing if it ain’t got that swing… Happy belated birthday, Frankie.
Straight from Marta Acosta’s blog, here’s the skinny on the Classics book trailer contest she’s hosting for all you aspiring and professional book trailer producers out there:
BOOK TRAILER CONTEST: Okay, I've figured out the rules for the Best & Worst Book Trailer of a Classic Novel Contest.
First Prize: Adobe Creative Design Suite 3 Premium, professional design package.
Second Prize: $300 Gift Certificate to Major Store (winner can select from list)
Honorable Mentions: $50 Amazon Gift Certificate (two winners)
Contestents may submit either a “best” version of a book trailer of a classic novel, or a “worst” version of a trailer. For the purposes of this contest, a classic was written by someone who is dead or doing a good imitation of being dead (i.e., J.D. Salinger).
Trailers must be 2:00 minutes or less.
Contestants must state whether they are submitting as an amateur or professional, and will be judged accordingly. Entries will be scored for creativity, design, and appeal to target audience for the best trailers; and for creativity and humor for the worst trailer.
Contestants are allowed to submit up to four entries.
Submissions must be posted on YouTube with “MA Contest” in the title. For example, “MA Contest: Best David Copperfield Trailer,” or “MA Contest: Worst Huckleberry Finn Trailer.” The links must be sent to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Michael Gough, Adobe Vice President
Ron Hogan and Sarah Weinman of GalleyCat
Candy Tan & Sarah Wendell, Smart Bitches Who Love Trashy Novels
Linsey, aka, Bookseller Chick
Contest runs through July 31. Winners will be announced on August 14.
All patently offensive (racist, pornographic, misogynistic, tediously insane…you know who you are so don’t waste our time) entries will be rejected.
It’s a pleasure to be in such illustrious company.
Rosina Lippi, the author of the Wilderness series under the name Sara Donati, is running two contests at the moment, but one really highlights an issue many authors and readers are facing in the book world. To get the word out (and to get her book ordered in) about her new paperback release, Tied to the Tracks, Rosina is having readers interested in winning a $50 gift certificate to Amazon and a pile o’books do the following:
Between now and July 5, either visit or call a local bookstore (that is, a brick-n-mortar store, near where you live or work). Once you've got the attention of a human being, ask:
1. When Tied to the Tracks will be released in trade paper;
2. When they expect to have it in the store;
3. How many copies will be available.
She then asks for the readers to either leave this information in the comments on her blog (or on their own blog and just link to hers).
Go read the comments. It’s horrifying, but not very surprising that a great number of the stores called have booksellers that don’t know the lay down date (otherwise known as the street date) or cannot (or will not) tell whether the book will be on the shelves. Part of the reason stores are hesitant to part with the information on how many books are coming in is because there have been a lot of schemes in the past—always with political books it seems**—to inflate numbers. People either order in books that they never pick up in the assumption that they’ll then be put out on the floor (they won’t be), or they bombard the store with calls hoping that they book will then be ordered in because there looks like a lot of interest.
Still, for the midlist author just trying to get their name out there, this might be helpful increasing the store’s book order from one to more, which means it is worth the effort. You can’t face out a book if there is just a single copy.
Alison Morris of Shelf Talker has a great post up called, “See that Galley? Sell it to me,” in which she bemoans the frustrations of receiving galleys with no synopses. She says, “Just as books have to sell themselves to customers, galleys have to sell themselves to booksellers.”
Hell yeah, sister bookseller. That’s what I’ve been complaining about for years. I hated, hated, HATED when I would get galleys with absolutely no information that was helpful to me. I don’t want to hear that this is the next Da Vinci Code or Historian, just sell me the story on its own merits! If you want to throw in something about how this will appeal to readers who liked X and Y novel then that’s wonderful and very helpful. That will stick in my head down the road when I’m trying to find a book that someone who liked both X and Y liked to read.
Powells has posted Bitch Magazine’s review of She’s Such a Geek: Women Write About Science, Technology and Other Geeky Stuff edited by Charlie Anders and Annalee Newitz. Behold the Geekery love.
Read Roger rants on the Mike Ford’s pay as you go novel idea.
In other YA news, I’ve just been alerted to the existence of Book Divas, the “leading book club for YA and college readers.” Although new to me, the Divas have been around in some form or another since 2002, and were recently purchased by Sinuate Media. If you have some time, click around the website to read different interviews with YA authors (they will be hosting a visit from E. Lockhart July 7th through the 21st), check out their contests and look at their message board and blog.
And that’s all for now. I need to go do homework and clean my house so it is not a wreck for me to come back to in August.
*What’s a girl gotta do to get invited to these things?
**I believe there have also been a few instances with non returnable titles, but I can’t think of a title off the top of my head. Maybe these are the equivalent of the scary tales that your parents told you to keep you in line.