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Sunday, February 22, 2009

What Lengths Would You Go To...


...to sell books?

The guy in the dangerously overloaded thong (at least I hope that's a thong, but the more I look at it...) is called The Naked Bookseller. When I ran across this image, I cracked up because it's absolutely perfect for this post! I once had a friend tell me, she would strip off naked, paint herself red, and run through the middle of downtown during the yearly festival if it would get her some book sales. Honestly... I think she was only half kidding.

I know once you're published, promotion is the name of the game. Everyone says so. Well, I'm not good at it. Since all my neighbors and some of my family members still don't know--after two years--that I've published, I must really stink at it. I would have made a lousy salesperson. I feel guilty asking people for money, even when I have something they want to buy. I think it goes back to the way I was raised. You didn't talk about money and you certainly didn't ask anyone for it. If someone asked you for something, if you could, you gave it to them. But times and mores have changed, haven't they, and the last thing I want to do is get sidetracked with some kind of statement about our materialistic society. This is supposed to be fun!

Anyway. What kinds of things would you be willing to do in the name of promotion? Or... without naming names of course, what's the weirdest or most outrageous thing you've heard about or seen an author do in the name of selling books?

Tell me about it.

Devon

edited to add: I just discovered something nifty. You can resize photos in edit mode right in your post once you're uploaded them. I did not know that!

Another edit: after learning the old dude was actually naked, I marched him right over to paint and spray painted him. I'm still shaking my head over the fact that I posted a photo of a naked guy. Sorry, but I still think it's hilarious.

6 comments:

  1. Honestly, I don't know how far I'd go or what I'd do for promotion. LOL

    I'm still half-asleep, so I can't think of anything weird or outrageous I've seen or heard anyone do though..that guy up top is OUTRAGEOUS! LOL

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  2. Ha ha , that cracks me up (no pun). So, I wonder what his sales 'figures' are like. Ok, I'll quit. That dude is hilarious. Where's his store? That might be a fun roadtrip.
    I can't think of any really crazy author schemes, off the top of my head. I will say, one of the best one's I have found is pens. But they have to be GOOD pens. I went to the Reader Appreciation Weekend over in Huntington last year, and in the gift bag were black and white pens from author Shirly Damsgaard. (I think that's how you spell it) They are wonderful little ballpoint pens, and I try to use them sparingly, because I don't want to have to throw them out. I see her name every time I pick up that pen, and several other people have looked at it too. I think that's one of the smartest things I've seen. And I wouldn't think it would be especially expensive for them, tho I can't say for sure.
    You ought to at least tell your family. They'd probably be proud of you.

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  3. Devon,

    Gimme your family members' phone numbers. I'll call them for you!

    On resizing the pictures in your blog, did you...I mean, you resized the whole photo, right? Not just *part* of it? Cuz I was just wondering.

    I feel sorry for the other guy in the picture. I think he's muttering something not very nice under his breath, along the lines of, "I can't believe he talked me into being in this picture."

    Okay, but there was a topic... Um, I'm willing to do lots of things for promotion, but disrobing would not be among them. I hardly think it would sell books anyway. I like the idea of giving away pens, and have looked into that. More expensive than you might expect. I make my own business cards, bookmarks, and other promo materials to complement the beautiful book cover postcards and cover stands Resplendence provides. I give out post cards all the time. One at lunch today, and one afterward to a checkout lady in a store. Shameless, huh?

    Just for the sake of pure research, let's gather our round-robin of bloggers and head to this bookstore you've found. We could take a picture. No--I insist, I'll take the picture. You and the other girls can stand with Mr. Manly.


    Am I writing a blog? Oh no--this is Devon's blog... I'll just wander away now...

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  4. Taryn, yes, he is outrageous! LOL! The more I look at that picture, the more it looks like he's got a big wad of chewing gum gommed over his privates. Which reminds me of a true story that happened when I was a little girl, but that might not be appropriate here.

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  5. Jennifer, I love the puns. Figured y'all might get a tickle out of this one. And now I'm going to have to track this guy down, via the net, and find out where his bookstore is located. I'll get back to you on that. ;o)

    Pens are great promo items. I looked into them when I was looking into such things, and they are terribly expensive. Even the really cheap ones (in terms of quality) were way more than I could afford for giveaways.

    As for telling my family, well, I shelved that idea when I tried it out on a few of them. Sure, some family members were very supportive (about a handful of cousins) but the rest acted like I'd done something really bad. I probably shouldn't say this, but when did that ever stop me. It's the area where I live. Many of these people have never read a book in their lives and the idea that someone might want them to scared them to death.

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  6. ~~~On resizing the pictures in your blog, did you...I mean, you resized the whole photo, right? Not just *part* of it? Cuz I was just wondering.~~~

    Magdalena, you crack me up! That little dude does look a bit out of proportion, doesn't he.

    I was wondering if the other unfortunate guy in the picture is an author who got dragged into this bookseller's promo stunt.

    RP's booksmarks are gorgeous! Jan sent me some of hers, so I could see. I looked into bookmarks and they're also expensive, at least the nice, two-sided ones with the beautiful colors and slick finish. So, I ordered some cheap ones. They cost 40-some dollars for 400, as I recall. They're pretty enough, I guess, but they're only on one side on plain white slightly stiff paper. I could probably make my own and have them come out just as good.

    When I find out where that bookseller is located, I'll let you know. I smell a ROADTRIP! LOL!

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