Monday, February 11, 2008

Are printed galleys a thing of the past?

Well, no. You still have to print galleys if you want such industry publications as "Publishers Weekly" and "Library Journal" to consider reviewing your book. But will that always be the case?

Maybe not.

According to an article in PW Daily, Rosetta Solutions is now providing a service called netGalley that might one day render printed ARCs and galleys obselete. For now, "Publishers Weekly" is using netGalley to capture such information as press materials and promotional plans, when publishers and authors submit their books for review.

But it sounds as though stage two of netGalley -- eliminating that short print run of galleys and sending the advance review media a digital copy of galleys -- is just around the corner. That's good news for those of us who love the thought of saving trees and postage even as we increase our efficiency. But it's bad news for those publishers and authors (and book publicists) who have been slow to adapt to the online world, or who just don't want to see how the Internet relates to book promotion.

Bob Dylan was right. The times, they are a'changing. And now would be a really good time to commit to moving forward with those changes so that, at the very least, you're still in the publishing game five years down the road.

Who decides what Google sees?

What Google finds when someone searches for your name, or for your book, is key to your reputation and credibility. So who decides what Google sees? There's an article in the Technology section of called "Google Yourself—And Enjoy It" that talks about how such companies as ReputationHawk, ReputationDefender, and International Reputation Management provide damage control when your online image is compromised.

But those companies don't do anything we can't do ourselves. The most important point the article makes is that, to control what Google sees, just keep creating content. The more positive the content you create, the more positive your online reputation will be -- and the more positive an impression you'll make when others Google you. Keep writing articles and press releases, and keep creating blog entries. The positive will soon outweigh the negative -- or, at least -- the negative will be pushed off the front page of Google's results.

Online book promotion is a lot like online personal promotion. Sure, everything that's posted on the Net about your book won't read just the way it would if you'd written it yourself. But there's one way to cure that problem: get your keyboard going, and start typing. Google sees what you tell it to see. That's the good news. Take advantage of it!