A few days ago I was talking about the futility of a lot of self promotion, and last night I had an idea. I know those middle-of-the-night ideas are usually crap, but sometimes they are genius.
The whole problem with self promotion is that most individual writers can’t reach the masses. We aren’t bringing news about our books into people’s daily lives and into their homes. We’ve tried with the internet. It’s helped, but it still involves a conscious decision to go to a certain website.
Folks, let me introduce THE BOOK CHANNEL. Okay, maybe that’s not the best name. I’m sure we can come up with something better. BOOK ME? BOOK WAREHOUSE? BOOK? I kind of like that.
With TV it’s just click, click, click.
What about a 24-hour home-shopping network for books and only books where one book is featured and sold every 30 minutes. That’s an average of 1500 titles a month. Not this crap of one book chosen by Starbucks, or one book chosen by Oprah.
Readers can call in. Authors can appear as guests. Website info and discussion group info are given on the screen. A website that is updated weekly will serve as a guide for the titles and times for featured books and author appearances and also work as another place to order. I’m imagining something like a cross between early MTV, some of the old live music shows, and QVC. It could be real seat-of-the-pants crazy fun.
The problem I foresee is people might buy a few books, not read them because people aren’t reading, then stop buying.
Another huge problem would be a financial one, so some of the big publishing houses would have to invest in the Book Channel. And they would want to push their A-list titles and nothing else, so rules would have to be put in place giving all featured books equal time, with a high percentage of books being chosen by the Book Channel staff. We would have to have some hot reader/hosts from teens to old farts. Or would we call them beejays?