Thursday, December 20, 2007

The Rise and Fall of the Blog Book?

Is the blook on the way out?

Perhaps, says Karen Warner on the amNewYork website, talking about how publishers are beginning to realise that the transition from website to blook doesn't necessarily translate into great sales figures and plenty of examples to prove it.

Motoko Rich in the New York Times, while acknowledging that:
... there is no clear alchemy that turns a popular Web site into a best seller, and several books based on blogs or other Internet material have flopped ...
points to some impressive web-to-book success stories, including that of Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney, a children's novel illustrated with cartoons. It can be read online for free but it has sold 147,000 copies in its printed form and spent 33 weeks on the top of the New York Times best seller list.
That a book derived from free online content has sold so well may allay some fears that giving something away means nobody will want to pay for it. It also encourages publishers who increasingly scour the Internet for talent, hoping to capitalize on the audiences that a popular Web site can deliver.
This is a message about blogging still being one of the best ways for writers to get noticed comes through in Warner's piece too. She quotes Chuck Shelton, an editor for Kirkus Reviews and The Book Standard:
(Blogs are) visible to agents and publishers, therefore their online popularity is easy to gauge, the quality of their writing is evident, and checking them out is easier than slogging through the slush pile.


Catalina R. said...

I have to confess that I would never buy a blook. The thing about blogs is that they are so interactive: you can immediately present your disagreement with the writer on the spot. I would only buy a blook if it were to function as an archive; cyberspace is a notoriously bad place for keeping files.

bibliobibuli said...

please do read awang goneng's "growing up in trengganu" and then i give you space to change your mind! will be writing about thes book soon.

lil ms d said...

may i quote this post? fr an interview and review

Anonymous said...

147K is good sales ? it doesn't hold a candle-stub to Rowling's sales. Or Archer's, or Crichton's... :)

bibliobibuli said...

you may indeed ms d

anon - good sales depends on who you are for eg. for a local book would be pretty amazing!

lucid frog said...

the international herald tribune also mentioned diary of a wimpy kid recently. their article 'crossover dreams' discussed the phenomenon of turning web work into book sales.

bibliobibuli said...

same article written by the same journalist because the nyt and iht are virtually the same newspaper :-D