dunce cap for the publicist

Dear Miss Snark,

It's springtime, the season of birds, bees, and cologne/weightlifting/highheels/shortskirts... et cetera.

Some highlights from The Romance Revolution:

~ 55% of women and 41% of men have said "I love you" in the hopes it would lead to sex.

~ 64% of men and 72% of women "want more romance" in their lives.

~ 86% of those surveyed believe it's "cool to be romantic".

In honor of the season, (publisher redacted) will issue its annual Romance Report this Wednesday, whose findings tell us what we already know: America is a nation of romantics. This year's report, The Romance Revolution, took the romantic pulse of American men and women, interviewing about their hopes and perceptions on the state of America's art of love.

Because of your blog coverage of Romance Lit, I've attached the report's press release, scheduled to go on the newswires tomorrow. I hope this brings a little springtime steam to your page, and if you want any more information on the report, drop me a line and I'll get right back to you.

Con Amour, I'm sure.

yea right.
My coverage of Romance Lit?
I may end up with a noise complaint from the neighbors I'm laughing so hard at that one.

Yes, this guy is spamming Killer Yapp.
No, it doesn't matter worth a damn to me.

What it means to YOU however is that if you write romance and your publisher tells you they have an email press campaign, you might want to see what they think that entails.

There are many many ways to be effective on line. Spam isn't one of them.

As a writer you must be prepared to advocate for your own book online. You absolutely cannot expect anyone else to do it effectively. Publishers can cover the trade outlets (like Publishers Weekly, Kirkus, Library Journal) and they can get review copies to newspapers but I've NEVER yet seen an effective online campaign from a major publisher.

If you go back and look at the books I've talked about on this blog you'll find two things:
1. they are books written by people who read this blog, and who've been reading it for awhile and are known to me from the comments column; and

2. they are books Snarklings, or someone I know, or a blogger I read, recommended.

In other words, a pr department telling me about a book has ZERO effectiveness here. Marketing and PR in Cyberia happens one-on-one or in places that feel like one-on-one (like the DorothyL list or Confessions of an Idiosyncratic Mind).

One of the great things about most blogs is people are writing about books about which they have genuine emotion-be it love or loathing. I actually read a book cause someone hated it so much (figuring I knew the guy was an idiot so I'd probably like the book--I didn't).

I tell all my authors to find blogging communities they like, and to be visible in those communities. Not every day, or even every week, but known. People buy books of people they know and like (or perhaps in Miss Snark's case--know and fear).

And tell your publisher not to spam Killer Yapp. It's interfering with his efforts to learn Catalan.


Gay said...

Some rants need to come with warnings:

"Please put down all food and beverages before reading."

I shall now have to take a break before completing the rest of today's posts in order to Windex™ my computer screen.

Kimber An said...

So true, Miss Snark.

Gay, it's always good to have such warnings in book reviews around the Blogosphere too. My favorite is "Put down your drink and sit on a towel!"

You haven't lived until you've had lemonade shooting out your nose, yanno.

I. M. Bitter said...

Props to Killer Yap for learning Catalan! I heard it's difficult to pick up.

And thanks Miss Snark for your usual good advice. If I ever manage to get published, your words of wisdom will be invaluable.


p.s. Glad you're back, hope you managed to schedule some R&R amongst all that housekeeping you did!

Heidi the Hick said...

All I can say is that for me, discovering this blog has kinda sorta in a way CHANGED MY LIFE!!!!

I have found a network of writers (some published, some not) who fascinate me and inspire me and most of all make me accountable. If I'm going to count myself among them, I better get my butt in gear and get working.

Smith said...

"whose findings tell us what we already know." Now there's a real hooker. I'm going to spend prime time pretending it's all so original.

Ouch, lemonade out the nose sounds a bit rough on the membranes. Cheerios are really a rush, especially if you can learn to aim.

Bella Stander said...

I'd have trashed that email just for the mixed languages that the nitwit used in the closing.

It's "Avec amour" (French), "Con amor" (Spanish) or "Con amore" (Italian).

Note to KY: "Amb amor" in Catalan. Only why are you learning any language that contains "cat"?

Suanne said...

Thank you, Miss Snark.

There's been some discussion around our house as to what constituted 'useful' time online, and whether a reasonable amount of time spent in a quality forum could be justified.

But even my non-writing husband knows better than to cross words with your Snarkliness, so that particular argument has now been ruled in my favor.

I am once again in your debt.

Kate R said...

aw jeez, I thought I was the only one who got that special email. You mean he con amours us all? That fink.

Anonymous said...

Actually, I needed a beverage warning for the poorly-written, overly-exuberant spam.

Of course, I hate romance novels, so it was all the funnier to me. Like reading publicity for hardware brochures; I don't like those, either, and I find the fact that anyone does amusing.