Synonyms in Publishers’ Catalogs

A friend at another publisher annually compiles all the industry’s catalogs, and assiduously copies every web-related marketing and publicity feature from the bulleted list accompanying the titles. Sure, the usual suspects are all represented: “web marketing,” “online marketing,” “online advertising”… But there’s always a few diamonds to be unearthed. The following are all pulled from actual 2009 catalogs. Collect them all!

  • “Book feature website” – Okay, this is just a string of nouns. I prefer “hardcover introduction chatroom.”
  • “Blogger Giveaways” – They’re giving away bloggers? Can I call dibs on Jessa Crispin? I want to visit Berlin!
  • “E-blast to screen writers” (sic) – That just sounds violent. No thank you.
  • “Online and Blog Publicity” – Is this an either/or case? Are there blogs that are not online? If so, is it really worth reaching out to them? Maybe they just want to be left alone.
  • “Book Trailer” – An easy target, sure. But let’s think about this for a second. Are booksellers really going to consider a book because you’re planning a book trailer? I haven’t empirically proven this yet, but my guess is the average viewcount for a book trailer is around 40.
  • “Dedicated Web page” – Preferable to those aimless, lazy web pages.
  • “Excerpt on iPhone” – Is it an app? For an excerpt? Or are you emailing me the excerpt, and I’m checking it on my iPhone? I guess that counts.
  • “Viral E-Blasts” – Again, this just does not sound enticing.

There’s several more golden nuggest, but after scrolling through a few pages of this it started to read like a Beckett play where the repetition of the words “online marketing,” “web publicity,” and “extensive author blog tour” lost all meaning.

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1 Comment

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One response to “Synonyms in Publishers’ Catalogs

  1. You mock the viral e-blasts, but I’d take ’em any day over viral pee blasts.

    Perhaps I’ve said too much.


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