Monday, September 7, 2009

Random Acts of Publicity

You may know that I write stories, and as such I'm a member of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators. This morning I learned from an SCBWI e-mail about an intriguing concept dreamed up by another children's writer named Darcy Pattison. It's called Random Acts of Publicity Week. Darcy's idea is for book loving folks to spend a bit of time each day for one week promoting the books they love out of the goodness of their hearts.

I *love* this idea. As a former book publicist and as someone who is disillusioned with American mongering-I-mean-marketing, I find this concept refreshing. I am coming to believe that books truly succeed not because of the scheming of corporate marketeers, but because they are GOOD, and because the average consumer is intelligent enough to recognize a book's quality and then share the good news with their communities.

Or at least, that's the way things should be, and the Week of Random Acts is just the kind of concept that supports this publicity model.

Starting tomorrow morning I'll unveil my four random acts of publicity, one each day. I'm not going to say much right now, but I'll give you a hint: I'm promoting books/authors because they're GOOD but also because they're flying under the radar right now. Sure, I'd love to publicize Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy, or Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, but I don't really think they need the publicity.

One more thing: I might cheat a little. Pattison recommends we follow a regiment that involves a different kind of act each day, and that we promote *books*. I might promote an author, instead of a book, or I might promote something related to books, but that isn't a book. And because Tuesday's action is to promote something by word of mouth and I *still* don't have my voice back after two thyroid surgeries, I'm going to have to take a different tack.

Now I just have to narrow my choices down to only four days' worth of book-related things to publicize. Yikes!

Till tomorrow, friends.

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