The Writing Rookie #10: Marketing Thoughts

For the complete list of columns in this series, .

A couple of months ago, I was listening to an interview on NPR with someone who was talking about the death of mass marketing and mass media. I can’t really do justice to the man’s arguments — I didn’t hear the whole thing, and besides, I was paying more attention to the thoughts inside my head, some of which I may write up someday as a post about the future of book publishing.

The other part of my thinking had to do with marketing for my book, which — now that the book is wending its way toward actual publication, past the editing and desktop publishing process — has been taking up an increasing share of my mental attention, as to my dismay I realize all over again that publication notwithstanding, Books Don’t Sell Themselves.

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Losing Reviews–the demise of

I was surprised the other morning to see that was closing up shop. I can’t claim to have been a regular or detailed reader of the service–to be honest, they didn’t review the kind of books I read. But I thought that they served an important role.

Historically, reviewers have served an important role in book publishing, both to let the public know about books and to serve as a check on quality. But it is also clear that the role of reviewers is changing radically.

As a result, I wonder whether or not we should mourn the loss of

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Apropos of nothing

For the record: If AMV doesn’t post about some work or author or event or interWebs kerfluffle related to Mormon arts and culture, it’s probably for one or more of the following reasons:

  1. We’re totally snubbing you/it/him/her/them.
  2. All of us our way too busy to turn our precious attention to The Thing (whatever it may be at the moment).
  3. We’re working on something — may even have it written — but we’re waiting to post it so that we can have the final word.
  4. The rest of the Bloggernacle and entire interWebs have hashed the thing to death and even our amazing mastery of discourse(s) has no power to resuscitate.
  5. We’re not only snubbing, we’re making a pointed, utterly devestating statement with our silence. Of course, there is a slim possibility that we just aren’t aware of you/it/him/her/them/whatever/The Thing/The Big Deal/Crazy Stuff so you’ll just have to use your best judgment about what’s going on. Of course, whatever you decide is probably wrong. Just so you know.
  6. Each of us co-bloggers is waiting for the other co-blogger to post something. It’s like a game of chicken. Shawn lost the last round.
  7. We just totally, utterly, with every fiber of our being and beyond a shadow of a doubt couldn’t care less.

Please note that I’m speaking fully for myself here and not for any of my co-bloggers with whom I haven’t discussed this post nor anything else that this may or may not be apropos of. Somehow we never got the big AMV back channel going where we have heated discussions about all this stuff. Usually it’s just — “Hey, I’m going to be at the AML conference — anyone else going to be there?” or “Hey, I’m going to do some poetry month posts — anybody else in?” or “Hey, what’s the latest on the planning for the coup d’ état of William?” etc. etc.

Edited 3/16/09: Fixed a couple of grammar mistakes and changed “without” to “beyond.”

New Words of Mormon

In priesthood meeting this past Sunday the photographers collecting photos for the ward photo directory stood up and talked about their project, and suggested, several times, that the photos might end up on the “Blogosphere.” After the third mention of “Blogosphere,” I replied (so everyone could hear):

“In the Church we call it the “Bloggernacle.”

To my surprise, “Bloggernacle” drew gaffaws from the entire room, as if I had invented the term there and then as a joke of some kind.

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