Wednesday, February 28, 2007

This is the 350th post (for now)*

I went to post a question yesterday—something asking about the validity of the statement that to have an interesting hero you must have an interesting villain and how anti-heroes factor into this—when I realized that it would have been my 350th post. Now why 350 seemed to be this awe-inspiring landmark, I don’t know, but it filled me with a sense of purpose, a need to make pronouncements about the future…

And a horrible case of writer’s block.

How dare I post something trivial for this bench mark, this sign I’ve been going strong since May July 2005. What could I possibly be thinking? I needed to whip out my best bleached smile and political suit and make promises about the future, not post pictures of a pair of ripped jeans with the novel, An Abundance of Katherines, peeping through the tear so that I could make a visual “in your pants” joke.

No, dammit! This blog stood for truth and research and sobriety and the American way…

Huh, no wonder the initials for this blog are B and S. Yeah, I don’t know where the heck I was coming from either. It became obvious that I really had been under the mental weather lately if I was trotting out those tired excuses because the truth is (and was) that I’m rarely sober (humor-wise, I try to make it a habit not to drink before 5 pm), and that many of these blog entries had been written while I reclined in a half-asleep, thought jumble on my couch. Half the time I don’t understand me, so I’m really surprised when y’all seem to get the point I’m trying to get across (which is a sign of your obvious intelligence and powerful deductive skills. Literary Sherlocks, the lot of you).

This doesn’t mean that I don’t research items. I do, but as it is not with the same library-haunting skill that I used in undergrad I tend to discount my abilities. Something I’ve been told to knock off. In fact, I’ve been informed I need to lose the whole self-doubt, (cue whine) but I don’t knooooow what I’m doing (/whine) act because I’m too damn old to bear the nicknames Mona Whiner and Sarah Heartburn anymore.

(As an aside: thank you mom and dad for “gifting” my little four-year-old self with these lovely monikers in the first place. My shrink will be billing you as soon as I find someone who understands my special needs.)

Not that I’ve been complaining, (Yes, I have.) but being stuck in anonymity limbo a lot longer than I thought along with a strong dose of bad television viewing has eroded my drive, and this inability to perform had led to a lack of self-confidence. Or maybe it’s the other way around. Or maybe it’s just a bad sexual pun. Whatever. What I’m trying to say is that I’ve got a lot planned for this blog and I just need to get off my ever-expanding heinie (how else do you think I ripped those aforementioned jeans) and do it!

I am a Bookseller (at large), hear me shelve!

Hear me flip pages?

Dear lord, how can I motivate myself if I don’t even have a good battle cry? I’m doomed. Doomed, I say!

Okay, now even I’m tired of me, which is usually the state I must hit so that I can bounce back and get things done. And those things are as follows:

--I’ve contacted several publishers about getting on their publicity mailing lists so I can start keeping track of what’s new and interesting. Ideally I want to showcase and highlight books that could really benefit from word of mouth/internet chatter and talk about either what the authors are doing publicity-wise and what makes their book unique. For example, the Boss Lady has been telling about this fab book Rain Village that she thinks needs a lot more love. It certainly has a gorgeous cover, which we all know I'm a sucker for.

--I want to celebrate your books and follow their progress: the ones you’ve just sold and the ones coming out. I don’t mean just send me your press release and call it a day because that makes me feel like one of a thousand other targeted blogs and my eyes start to glaze over as I read it. Just write me an email and tell me what’s up. It doesn’t even have to be a long one. And I promise I’ll get back to you. I’m getting better at this email thing (apparently my mental powers are not yet strong enough to deliver my answers directly to your mind. Obviously I’m not a relative of Professor Xavier.)

--I want to host other booksellers’ stories. Admit it, you miss ‘em. Hell, I miss ‘em. I want to hear about their crazy customers, find out if there exists some universal book truths, and also hear about what does and does not work when it comes to publicity and signings. Also I just want to talk to some crazy, cool booksellers who deserve some rewards for toiling in the stacks. All opinions provided can be downed with a little tequila and cut with some salt and lime if necessary.

--I want to continue trying to keep us all up on what’s new and interesting in the publishing world. It’s been the year of hijinks, no reason it should stop anytime soon. (Someone did just by the rights to Regan’s job-ending creative biography, 7, by Peter Golenbock, you know. It will be interesting to see how well it sells and how Murdock and Co. respond to the numbers.)

What does this mean for you? More content, hopefully more fun, and more stuff for us to discuss.

What does this mean for me? A reason to get my butt off the couch, my office organized and my head back on straight. I want y’all to have fun coming here and I want to have fun writing stuff we both enjoy.

Of course, I still want to torture y’all a little, which means the obligatory “in your pants? No, in my pants!” post with An Abundance of Katherines sticking out of my ripped jeans is mere posts away.

I said I needed to fire up, not grow up. I know my limits.

Happy 350th post!

*I plan on weeding filler posts out of the archives which will probably reduce this post down to 345 or even 340, greatly diminishing its current significance. But hey, that’s the future, this is the now!


Robin Brande said...

Happy 350! I like your plans for the future. You've always been fun to read, so just keep doing what you're doing.

Julia Phillips Smith said...

Wow - 350 posts does seem like a milestone of some proprtion. I'm a new blogger with a grand total of 20 posts. Just 330 to go!

Anonymous said...

Congrats on the major milestone, BSC!!

Anonymous said...

Happy 350!

I'd be tickled to put you on the list of people to receive an ARC of my upcoming first novel from Tor. It's a pirate fantasy adventure, and if the sketches I've already seen are any indication, the cover art will be excellent :) I'd love to have a mention (although, if you really hate the story, maybe you could develop a mild case of amnesia and forget you read it... *grin*)

Feel free to drop me an email with your mailing address, and I'll put you on the list.

mistywrites AT gmail DOT com