Thursday, June 02, 2005

Get Set, Ready, Play!

Reporter Regan McMahon wrote a story for the San Francisco Chronicle Magazine in March that sparked a lot of controversy. It was about how kids’ sporting activities had taken families hostage, so much that parents spent their weekends dashing from one soccer meet to another with a pit stop at a basketball clinic. McMahon just sold a book on that topic, reports Publishers Marketplace:

“Journalist Regan McMahon's REVOLUTION IN THE BLEACHERS, for parents who spend their lives shuttling their kids from one organized sports practice to the next, losing valuable family time and contributing to the all-or-nothing attitude in youth sports today, based on McMahon's controversial cover story for the San Francisco Chronicle, to Erin Moore at Gotham, in a pre-empt, by Betsy Lerner at Dunow, Carlson & Lerner Literary Agency.”

Bud Parr from Chekhov’s Mistress weighs in on the blogging panel at BEA. It looks like some of the publishing types still don’t get it.

The LA Times follows Harley Jane Kozak on her tour for her second book Dating is Murder.

“In a sense, this is the old-fashioned way to build a writing career. With travel becoming increasingly expensive and technology making it cheaper to link authors and readers in ever more inventive ways, the tradition of the writer physically going out to press the flesh has faded.

There are fewer Kozaks — new writers hoping to stake out a readership — out on the road these days. When they do tours, the trips tend to be shorter and closer to where the author lives or where the book is set, hoping to play off local interest.

"What we have learned is that if you are going to go out on tour with basically an unknown author and set up a book-signing, chances are you'll have two to five people show up," says Justin Loeber, publicity director for Simon & Schuster. "It's just not very cost-effective."

Instead, publicity campaigns are increasingly built on satellite television and radio interviews, in which an author can spend one morning doing half a dozen on-air interviews from one studio; interviews on the Web; phone interviews with local newspapers; visits with buyers for bookstore chains; and the occasional gimmick. For Kozak's book, Doubleday is offering a $5 discount to people who buy both the new hardcover and a paperback copy of her first mystery.”

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