Wednesday, June 15, 2005

More hump, less day.

Well, I thought that gigabyte of space in my email account over at Yahoo! would be more than adequate to do my business here. But just yesterday alone I received 327 megabytes of PDF files. *Sigh* No problem. Keep 'em comin' We'll build a bigger ark.

However - please pay close attention: only POD efforts only. That means no small presses and no books "back in print". And--I can't believe I need to address this--no books from traditional publishers. I know everyone is looking for some publicity (myself included, novel-wise) but to the kind people at Kensington, Atria and William Morrow, stop sending me PDFs and inquiries on ARCs. Not that I mind a nice advance copy now and again, but your books will not be reviewed here.


The good folks over at Beatrice tipped me off to a rather humorous press release from Lulu. Perhaps the most appealing thing about Lulu (besides the ability to make your book available to the public at no cost (no ISBN, no distribution)) is the fact that you feel like you are dealing more with the guys who started Napster than a bunch of executive types.

In any case, they have posted (in a manner that equally balances self-service and self-deprecation) titles most likely to not be on a bestseller list:

Hot Beach Reads? No Chance — Poll Names Books Least Likely To Top Summer Bestseller Lists... Not Blockbusters But "Nichebusters"

They take themselves seriously. Sort of.

". . . How To Cook a Peacock [is] a 395-page, perfect-bound, black-and-white book, which sells for $19.95, mainly to university libraries across the world. It is part of a seven-volume series on the subject.

The movie rights are, at the time of writing, still available."

And the results of the poll:


Q. Which of the following recently published books do you think is LEAST likely to become a #1 bestseller or "hot beach-read" (while still being perfectly interesting to its own target reader)?

Non-Equilibrium Systems and Irreversible Processes –Adventures in Applied Topology (Vol. 3) 28%

How To Cook A Peacock 23%

Creating Pastel Champions – A Step-by-Step Guide to Painting Model Horses with Pastels 8%

Ten Crochet Dude Dishcloths 8%

Mastering Law Enforcement Chaplaincy 8%

The School of Hard Knocks: The Evolution of Pension Investing at Eastman Kodak 7%

The Gulf-Coast Shipbuilding-Cluster 7%

The Replica Watch Report 5%

Seven Crochet Dude Afghan Squares 4%

The PinBotz Guide to the Greatest Pinball Machines of the 80s and 90s 4%

Just over one in four (28%) respondents tapped Non-Equilibrium Systems (Vol. 3) as the book least likely to become a #1 bestseller – while just under one in four (23%) picked How to Cook a Peacock. 8% each gave that honor to, respectively, Creating Pastel Champions, Ten Crochet Dude Dishcloths, and Mastering Law Enforcement Chaplaincy. Twice as many respondents tapped Ten Crochet Dude Dishcloths as picked its partner, Seven Crochet Dude Afghan Squares.

And a regular blog reader reminded me of this bizarre effort of publishing a book. Lawrence Watt-Evans (who has published many a book with Tor, Del Rey, etc.) is publishing a book on the web, one chapter at a time--as long as he receives $100 in donations per chapter. He is up to chapter nine, so I guess it is working. This could prove to be a fruitful effort--if he publishes 425 chapters. It is, however, proof that there is almost no way to keep from getting a book in front of faithful readers. Give 'em heck, Lawrence!