Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Book Publicity by ... John Irving and Stephen King?

Apparently, when you're J.K. Rowling, and you're in need of serious book promotion services, you call upon the world's strangest book publicists: John Irving and Stephen King.

Don't get me wrong. I'm not calling John Irving and Stephen King strange (although, surely, they wouldn't mind if I did). I'm just saying that it was a surprise to read this story about a charity lovefest involving Rowling, Irving, and King.

It's interesting that three of today's top authors got together to talk about their books. But, from the perspective of this book publicist, what was most interesting was that the focus appears to have been on Rowling's work -- specifically, the upcoming final book in the Harry Potter series. Irving and King gave Rowling their editorial suggestions ("Let Harry live!"), and Rowling made no promises, one way or the other.

Sure, a couple of titles by Irving and King -- "The World According to Garp" and "The Dead Zone" -- received a token bit of book promotion in the article. But these plugs were eclipsed by the ostentatious plug Rowling received for her upcoming book.

I mean, who would not read an article about book promotion that contained the names Rowlings, Irving, and King? Irving and King probably aren't out to sell more copies of "Garp" or "The Dead Zone" right now. But Rowling's newest "Harry Potter" stands to benefit appreciably from this kind of book publicity.

So, if you're looking for endorsements from literary luminaries for your latest children's book, maybe you could ring up John Irving and Stephen King. Just tell them you're looking for some unusual book publicists ... and remind them that it's for a good cause.

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