Wednesday, January 02, 2019

"Bookbub" likes to proclaim the world's reading lists for everyone; tips on how authors get on it

A site called Bookbub has set itself up as the arbiter of what ought to be on everyone’s lifetime reading (bucket) list.  It’s called “49 Books that Everyone Should Read in their Lifetime”.  (OK, “they” is a singular pronoun.)  That is, 7 times 7. 

The list blurs as you browse, and the site forces you to join a free email list.

There seem to be 26 fiction books and 23 nonfiction. Some of the fiction have been movies.  To Kill a Mockingbird”, “1984”, “The Book Thief”, “Catch-22”, “Pride and Prejudice” and many others have been movies.

The one concept here that seems pretty important is that some books do outlive the historical circumstances under which they are written.  That’s pretty hard with most modern spy or action novels.

No, my “Do Ask Do Tell” isn’t on the list.  Neither is Nicholas Taleb’s “Skin in the Game” (or any predecessors). “Into the Wild” and “On the Road” were both interesting road-trip movies (the first of these becomes tragic). I do remember the film version of “Angela’s Ashes”.

The existence of a list like this gives POD publishers ammunition to try to prod authors into trying harder to sell their own older books.

Writer Garrett Robinson explains (YouTube video above) how to promote your book on Bookbub and says boxed sets help. Should I make a boxed set of my three DADT books?

I checked Garrett on Amazon and he seems big on fantasy.  He appears to have several series.  I’ve heard of Nightblade.  I don’t know if these have led to any films.

I tend to perceive fantasy as a boiler plate genre.  But I’ve seen coworkers devour fantasy during lunch or when on-call the way you could consume Stephen King (especially “Misery” – you know, she chops off his feet.)  I know of some sci-fi and spy projects comparable to mine which get into very esoteric stuff that would be hard to mass produce in a series.  But remember, if you escape from Earth and find another planet with a civilization, you can come up with sequels. Ridley Scott will consider it.  Sci-fi and fantasy really are different “genres”, however, with very different creative problems.

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