BEA 2004: What, no stunts?

This year’s publicists have disapointed me. The bathrooms are clean and free of postcards and bookmarks. I haven’t seen any crazy booths. I only saw two big PR stunts. One, entailed numerous people in matching shirts reading a copy of the book at the entrance to the main floor. This was good. It wasn’t just a handful of people, it must have been two dozen. Maybe three. But I can’t remember the book title so go figure on the accuracy of their efforts.

Later in the day you couldn’t walk through the main area without hearing about the encouragement to burn the book Wild Animus. There were two guys with hand written posters and a barbecue. As I strolled the aisles I came across one booth in the PGW area for just this one book. I asked them why some people wanted to burn it, and the woman said that it contained sex and controversial passages.
I asked them about the company, Too Far, and it turns out the author is also the publisher. But they weren’t using the term self published. They are touting a national tour, but only have four event cities listed. And the budget for national advertising is $100,000. We’ll see. I took a look at the advanced galley later and the writing was crap. Though I’m not certain, I think the whole barbecue set up was part of the plan. It worked, but their mistake was giving out the advanced copy. Once I saw the writing, it was obvious I wasn’t going to by the book. They would’ve been able to create more hype, and maybe sales, by continuing to push the controversy, but keeping the book a mystery until it released.