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JennaGlatzer
03-20-2005, 12:06 AM
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A28628-2005Mar11.html

Comments?

Medievalist
03-20-2005, 12:20 AM
I commented on it in this thread (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?p=122439#post122439), and you should definitely scroll down a bit to read "Uncle" Jim/ James D. Macdonald's response.

Richard
03-20-2005, 12:23 AM
Good for her if she's finding success from it, but I can't help noticing that at no point in that story did it mention her actually selling books... Indeed, it specifically mentions that the people coming along were there because of the shop, not her. It's publicity, sure, but...

JennaGlatzer
03-20-2005, 03:33 AM
Phooey... sorry I didn't read that thread more closely, Lisa. I should have noticed the article was already dissected there. Yep, you both covered most of what I would have.

It's so misleading that the writer said some books get no publicity budget. It may be a LOW publicity budget, but it costs money for publishers to put out catalogs, send review copies and galleys, etc., and no decent publisher would skip that.

JennaGlatzer
03-20-2005, 03:43 AM
P.S. Points about Wendy:

--Misleading statement 1:

"Nearly everyone who publishes a book quickly realizes that if they want to publicize their work, they better take matters into their own hands."
That is why Shanker is at Macy's. Her book is "The Fat Girl's Guide to Life," which was published last year and released in paperback edition last week. Executives at Macy's saw Shanker on "The View," the weekday chat show, and they soon proposed a marriage made in synergy heaven.

(In other words, Shanker isn't at Macy's because she publicized the book herself. She's at Macy's because she went on The View-- most likely arranged by her book's publicity department-- and someone from Macy's happened to see her there and called to invite her to be a spokesperson. All she did was show up to the events... not exactly the guerilla approach to self-promoting the article makes it seem!)

--A representative from Macy's explained at the outset that anyone who bought $50 worth of merchandise would get a free copy of "The Fat Girl's Guide to Life."

This means Macy's bought copies of the book in bulk. That's great! And again, it's not something Shanker had to arrange on her own. Macy's execs talk this through with the special sales division at Bloomsbury and negotiate a price. Wendy doesn't even have to get involved.

The events and the press behind them are great for publicity. It's just completely different than the article's hypothesis, which is that authors have to do all their own publicity. The article's main subject proves otherwise!

Medievalist
03-20-2005, 03:49 AM
It's so misleading that the writer said some books get no publicity budget. It may be a LOW publicity budget, but it costs money for publishers to put out catalogs, send review copies and galleys, etc., and no decent publisher would skip that.

Also, larger publishers especially have an active sales force who know the book stores, the book store staff, and the readers. I've seen the sales agents from some of the mainstream publishers, and they really do sell the books. In particular I've seen amazing work from Tor and Avon agents, selling SF/Fantasy and Romance. They really knew books, and readers, and what people will buy.

I've also seen incredible staff selling to libraries and the trade at the old ABA and the ALA from lots of smaller publishers as well as the large houses. It makes a difference.

maestrowork
03-20-2005, 04:04 AM
She went on The View and she complained she didn't get enough PR?

What did she expect, Oprah?