Tuesday, July 5, 2016
Brexit, Algorithms and Enthusiasm
Usually, an idea for a blog will be sparked while I'm reading an article or listening to the news but this month has been a little lean for finding ideas that peaked my interest. I was browsing through Publisher's Weekly and found two articles that sort of intrigued me and at least made me curious.
Unless you've not bothered with the news since last month, you know by now that Great Britain has voted to exit the European Union. I think it would take more than one blog to figure out what all that will entail. I'm not going to attempt to untangle all the pros and cons in this post because quite frankly, I don't have any idea just where this thing is headed or what all it entails but with all of the shake up being projected in the financial sector, the sale of books will surely be impacted and from the article I read, it won't be good.
What a minute. I've heard it said more than once that they don't really know what's going to happen so why are they projecting doom and gloom? I would think that would impact the market negatively, but what do I know? I know that I don't sell very many books in Great Britain and waiting to see how it all shakes out before I panic, seems to be a good idea.
Another interesting article dealt with a book that won't be out until September 2016 but it seems that The Bestseller Code has been cracked by authors Jodie Archer and Matthew Jockers. They seemed to have developed an algorithm that analyzes a book using certain criteria that we're all familiar with (think basic novel writing) to determine how to appeal to the reader. Really?
I'm sure there are people out there that will run out and purchase this book but I'm not really enthusiastic about the premise. I have bookshelves full of tomes promising that they had the answer to how I could make a living writing the books of my dreams. The truth is, I could buy this book and try and take apart the BOOK that it suggests is the perfect book but I've been down that road many times. I've tried writing to the market, (which is what this kind of reminds me of) before and failed because the books always seemed forced.
On the other hand, I have to give the devil his due. We all want to know that magic formula for selling a book. We invest time and money in social media so that our books will be noticed. We pay attention to trends. Is data mining to find what appeals to readers any different? Probably not, but it all sounds like I should be wearing a lab coat while I write instead of my usual tiara and feather boa.
I'm sure everyone has an opinion and before I totally discount the information, I'm probably going to order this through the library. Seriously, my bookshelves are sagging and unless this book has some earth-shattering information, it won't be a keeper. I'll let you know.
Until next month,