Friday, September 09, 2005

Friday Morning Cold Pizza and Warm Beer (for my college friends)

Let me tell you there is nothing better (nor anything cheaper) than making the previous day's dinner today's breakfast. Cold, slimy mushrooms and sour onions are just what the doctor ordered, eh?

While you're chomping off bites of that stiff pizza, check out the P5 for today:

(2) SUFFER IN SILENCE: 21,624 5
(3) COOKIN' FOR LOVE: 96,932 6
(5) THE CIRCLE OF SODOM: 219,873 6


My dear friend, Lauren Baratz-Logsted (try saying that three times quickly with mushroom pizza in your mouth), tipped me off to a cool little thing going on over at Romance Designs in an effort to help pitch in with rebuilding/rescuing of the battered Katrina-zone.

This is a pretty cool thing for those of you who read romance/chick lit/etc.. If you donate $2 to the Red Cross through the Romance Designs website, you have the chance to win an autographed book by one of MANY romance authors. Authors include: Carly Alexander, Christina Skye, Kathleen Long and, of course, the aforementioned Ms. LBL!

How cool is that?

Now, for a quick lesson in publicity:

We (writers) tend to complain we are not getting enough publicity for our books, whether it is POD (likely zero) or otherwise. It is never enough.

Keep in mind, though, that if you do get it (or it is forthcoming), please make sure you have written a quality book.

Did anybody watch the E! True Hollywood Story on Wednesday? They covered Meg Ryan. A solid quarter of the show was devoted to her mother (who gives us a frightening glimpse into what Meg will look like in her old age: not good) going on and on about little Meg and the struggles they faced in their younger days and so on.

Meg's mommy plugged her autobiography (to my count) six times. They even showed the cover more than once.

Being the curious girl I am, I immediately checked it out on Amazon. The book (with a cover that leaned toward the PODish) was ranked 932,945. When the show was over it was ranked 932,945. The next day it was ranked 932,945. Today it is ranked 932,945.

And the reviews (two of the three) on Amazon are quite harsh.

Now, we would all kill (not literally, for most of us) for that kind of publicity on a popular show like E! True Hollywood Story. But this goes to show that getting exposure is not the same as generating buzz. Why do some self-published books sell better than some traditionally published (though rare)? It's not about buying space in the NY Times Book Review or getting on NPR. It's about buzz, that indefinable property that makes one person say to another, "Hey, have you read . . . ?"

Lesson summary: Write the best book you can. Worry about getting the word out later. The latter is worthless without the former.

Thanks again for visiting the Cafe. Hopefully we'll get the restrooms back in order for next week.

Stay tuned: The treasure returns Monday!

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Where are they now?

But first, the P5 for September 7th, 2005:

(2) COOKIN' FOR LOVE: 30,719 5
(3) SUFFER IN SILENCE: 45,379 6
(4) INFERTILITY SUCKS: 111,217 6
(5) THE CIRCLE OF SODOM: 175,728 5


Where are they now? The POD selection authors, that is? Who knows. They are probably home, depressed, watching how their books are not selling.

I know, because I do the same thing about my own book.

But here a couple of tasty items:

Nicole Hunter (whose book is still being shopped around NY by a top tier agent, and whose book may finally get read by top tier editors now that publishing's "summer break" is over) is paired up with THE TIME TRAVELLER'S WIFE on Amazon. We'll see if this makes a sales impact, though I am guessing it is already working. Last time I checked (above), Nicole's book was ranked 23,229.

RoseMarie London will be on the Speaking of Writing Radio Program on September 8th, along with CJ Box. Here is the press release:

This week on Speaking of Writing, host Jeffe Kennedy welcomes a tagteam of local writers. CJ Box and RoseMarie London will discuss their different takes on writing, Wyoming and selling books,through both traditional and non-traditional venues.

C. J. Box, of Cheyenne, is the author of the award-winning and popular Joe Pickett series of novels, including the recent Out of Range. Laramie writer and bookseller RoseMarie London knows a thing or two about writing novels,selling books, the perils of getting yourself in print and when need be,pulling yourself up by your bootstraps.

RoseMarie recently decided to join the growing numberof people who are publishing their own books, with her short-story collection, The Search for an Inappropriate Man. After all, RoseMarie knows how books are sold. She once worked for the Publisher of Little, Brown and Company in New York City,and not long ago, she compiled practical advice into a lecture about book publishing for the advanced novel writing course at the University of Wyoming. Best of all, she's manager of Chickering Bookstore in downtown Laramie, Wyoming. Why shouldn't a bookseller sell her own book? Chickering does after all, report sales to the New York Times bestseller list.

Chuck Box started out as a small town newspaper man.He has built himself up to the writer of national bestsellers, a New York Times Notable Book and novels that have been translated into 12 languages. He might have a high-powered agent today, but he started out yanking on his own bootstraps.Together, the two will discuss their recent books and the paths to holding those books in their hands.

RoseMarie and Chuck will both be appearing at The Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers Colorado Gold Conference in Denver this weekend, where Rose Marie will be repeating the talk she gave at UW, called TheReal Deal: What actually happens to your novel from acquisition to the bookseller's shelves.

Tune in to the program on 93.5 LP FM on your dial, 4-5pm on Thursday,September 8. Speaking of Writing is sponsored in partby UW's Creative Writing program, and by contributing listeners. KOCA is Laramie's only bilingual community radio station.

Speaking of tuning in . . . I've got a long list of goodies for the fall season, along with some top treasure. Stay tuned, because now that I've had a vacation, I'm ready to roll.