Links + Things: Alpha A-holes, Book Marketing and Delayed Ebook Releases

Links + Things: Alpha A-holes, Book Marketing and Delayed Ebook Releases

One of the reasons I wanted to update my content management system is because I am constantly clipping links and other interestingness in Everynote that I want to post on the blog, but I didn't have an efficient way to do so. The new setup makes this so much easier, so I'll be doing posts about interestingness I've found more regularly. 

Links + Things on Clear Eyes, Full Shelves

Today's topics: the return of the asshole alpha male character, marketing saturation and delayed ebook releases.

Links

In real life most women I know wouldn’t walk but would RUN from this man. But romance isn’t real life and there is no shame in liking what you like. We just have to hope that all this testosterone is sometimes countered with books about incredible women. Because I want to read her story too.

Drunk Writer Talk is one of my favorite author blogs (I'm known for leaving rambling and random comments on their blog--I assume they think I'm insane); it's a collaboration between several romance authors, including CEFS favorite Molly O'Keefe. Their discussion posts are always great, and the comments on their blog are also really interesting. 

Stephanie Doyle wrote a very interesting post about the re-emergence of the ultra-alpha asshole "hero" and his impact on 1) the characterization of the heroine in romance and 2) where this leaves novels without these types of Old School characters. 

I have a lot of opinions on this subject and am brain-writing a post about it, but Stephanie touches on a lot of issues specifically from an author's perspective.

Link

The publisher started the promotional buzz for Just One Day, which has an announced first printing of 150,000 copies, back in October, when it launched a Facebook fan page for the novel. Forman’s earlier novels, If I Stay (2009) and Where She Went (2011), were bestsellers for Dutton and have a combined in-print tally of one million copies. The page includes a countdown-to-pub date widget that links to other social media, and an app that reveals additional chapters of Just One Day as the number of “likes” increases (a total of one-third of the book will be revealed).

Via social media, Penguin is encouraging a 24-hour readathon of Just One Day on January 11, in hopes that YA bloggers will chat about the novel; discussion questions will be posted online via Penguin Teen social media and the book’s Facebook page. On the following day, Forman will be available on Twitter for a one-hour chat to answer fans’ queries.

To tie in with the travel theme of Just One Day, photos from Forman’s own extensive travels will be posted on Penguin Teen Tumblr for 365 consecutive days, through December 20 of this year. From January 7-18, Forman will embark on a blog tour, posting 10 of her travel photos and explaining how each inspired a scene in her novel. The author will hit the road on an actual tour on January 14, visiting seven cities over eight days.

Has anyone noticed that Gayle Forman has a new novel out? ;)

I kid, I kid... If you participate in online book spaces at all, you'd have to be dead to not notice that Just One Day, out this week, is receiving an intense publicity push from Penguin. Honestly, I loved the book (I won an early copy from Shelf Awareness as part of the pre-publicity push), but if i was on the fence about reading it, this saturation would be a real turnoff. 

Today they're pushing a 24-hour readthon, and I'm pretty much hiding from Twitter as a result. Theoretically, I love that there's so much attention for the book, but like The Fault in Our Stars and Gone Girl, I do wonder how much actual impact this massive amount of marketing has and what books don't get promoted--or even published--because the "sure thing" authors' books are promoted so aggressively.

I realize the nature of the publishing economy is that the big books subsidize the "little" ones, but I wonder is some of those little, unknown books could perform better if just a small fraction of those promotional resources were distributed elsewhere.

Link

However, not all Jordan’s fans are happy. As GalleyCat reports, the ebook edition of this huge book doesn’t come out until April 9th, leading to, at the time of writing, 165 one-star reviews on Amazon.

Delayed ebook releases is something that irks me to know end--I really believe that ebooks and paper books should be released simultaneously  if the publishers publishes in both formats.

(Though, honestly, I don't understand why digital-first imprints and publishers don't take advantage of print-on-demand services to create paper books for customers who order them, but perhaps the price point makes it challenging). Furthermore, I adore it when publishers so what Simon Pulse has done quite a bit, and that's releasing all three formats--ebook, hardcover and paperback--simultaneously. Let readers decide what they want to read. 

We all know that publishers do this so to hedge their bets on books landing on the NYT Bestseller List, and I just have a hard time thinking that's a good reason to deprive readers who maybe don't want to--or physically can't--lug a 900-page hardcover around. 

I thought it was interesting that a bookseller favorably responded to the delay on Twitter, arguing that all ebooks should be delayed so as to force consumers to purchase print books, 

While I understand the bookseller's argument (and I know that ABA has focused a lot of efforts in fighting ebooks*), I don't see how this encourages the overall culture of reading or readers.  Frankly, I don't really think that limiting the sale of ebooks would help bricks and mortar retailers all that much--I do think more creative, collaborative thinking like Angry Robot's ebook/paper book bundling in the U.K. has the potential to really make a meaningful difference if we want booksellers to thrive in this economic climate.

Link

*While simultaneously trying to figure out a way to provide them to their customers, including their new deal with Kobo, which puts ereaders on the shelves of independent bookstores.

Things

Jennifer Echols, Dirty Little Secret

Jennifer Echols, Dirty Little Secret

Not That Kind of Girl by Siobhan Vivian

Not That Kind of Girl by Siobhan Vivian

  • The cover of Jennifer Echols' upcoming YA (June 2013) popped up on Goodreads and I am absolutely in love with it. I love that she's finally getting the types of covers that her books deserve. This has kind of a YA Nashville vibe, right?

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