Monday, March 31, 2008

According to a New York Times article, popular bloggers are getting book deals with surprising frequency. The phenomenon lends some additional credence to Clay Shirky's claims about A-list bloggers in Power Laws, Weblogs, and Inequality (part of the reading for tomorrow's class). However, the Times article reports that books by bloggers do not necessarily sell many copies.

So to all the literary agents out there scanning blogs for talent, look no further! The meta-blog book would be a huge hit. Guaranteed!

7 comments:

vera said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
vera said...

(My first comment didn't work)

It seems the "Stuff White People Like" blog is the latest to get a book deal.

kevin said...

Am I the only one to find this a little disturbing? Why would I pay for stuff white people like when I already get it for free online (or by looking at my credit card bill -- zing!).

Even if they add more content isn't the best stuff what they already gave away for free?

Matt said...

It'll be interesting to see if any of these books catch on. My guess is that if they will it'll be because the book itself catches a buzz in the book market and thus gets bought by folks who don't know it was a blog first.

Otherwise it seems that books based largely upon reproduced Internet content are mostly useful in cases where the content's authors have fans that want to support them. For instance, some popular webcomics (like penny-arcade.com and explodingdog.com) do a fair trade in books because their fans want physical copies of the works and a way to contribute to the comics' future success.

Lewis said...

there's an interesting conversation between clay shirky and daniel goleman, the author of emotional intelligence, called socially intelligent computing. there are free samples available at www.morethansound.net, best wishes, lewis

John said...

I'd sign you all up if I were an agent.

Seriously: on Kevin's point: I don't think the books tend to take much, if anything, from the blogs. At least in my own case, I've tried things out on blogs, checked the reaction, and then folded them into books. I think that's a pretty common way to go. I doubt many authors are just rolling up blog entries into a book. If they did, I doubt they'd sell many.

JP

angasal said...

Apparently, publishers are taking sroties and poetry from blogs and publishing those as well. Does this change bloggers' incentives as to what they choose to post?
http://sify.com/finance/fullstory.php?id=14655324