The art really is in isolating yourself and letting as few things into your head as possible. To only admit those things into your head that come from a direction where no one else ever looks. That is the difficult thing.
I am sorry to say we have lost our beloved author of The Scandal Plan during the filming of his own book trailer. The below video is footage from Bill Folman‘s final days as he went to increasing measures to spread the word about his book, a satire of how to win the presidency by faking a sex scandal. Folman willingly underwent human torture and makes some salient points about what makes a good book club book in his quest to get The Scandal Plan into the public eye, before plunging into madness in his touching final moments. While the below footage is controversial, we feel it’s important to show the world the man behind The Scandal Plan.
Please consider Bill’s plight the next time you’re in a bookstore, or when looking for the next great pick for your book club.
Attention! If you have a literary tattoo, agent Eva Talmadge and author Justin Taylor (whose Everything Here is the Best Thing Ever will be published by us in winter 2010) want to see it!
“We are seeking high quality photographs of your literary tattoos for an upcoming book. Send us your ink! …
All images must include the name (or pseudonym) of the tattoo bearer, city and state or country, and a transcription of the text itself, along with its source. For portraits or illustrations, please include the name of the author or book on which it’s based. We’d also like to read a few words about the tattoo’s meaning to you — why you chose it, when you first read that poem or book, or how its meaning has evolved over time. How much (or how little) you choose to say about your tattoo is up to you, but a paragraph or two should do the trick.
Please send clear digital images of the highest print quality possible to firstname.lastname@example.org.”
Wondering who holds the world record for most nose wiggles in one minute? The most armpit farts in 30 seconds? The largest collection of Dr. Seuss costumes? Wonder no more, with the Universal Record Database, “the definitive site for human achievement.” You can even submit your own world records for doing completely ridiculous (and fun) things. Personally, I’d like to see someone beat the record for most socks put on a left foot while listening to “Beat It.”
Lance Reynald, author of Pop Salvation, is running an awesome and unique contest on his website. The winner will receive a pop box, which is a box containing:
“Certainly books, random trinkets and toys found in a days wandering, things that make me think of Pop Art, Music, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Candy, Posters, Makeup, things my friends might want to put in a box, handwritten notes, photographs, postcards… the list goes on. For the most part it will be things that remind me of all that inspired the novel Pop Salvation. Those of you that have already read it can surely imagine what kind of treats that might net the lucky winner. A bit of glam and glitter brought to your doorstep via the US Mail.”
How can you resist? To win, all you have to do is send Lance a photo booth strip with a few words about how it came to be (check out Eight Inch Stripper for examples). Lance will gather all the entries and choose one randomly to receive the box. For updates on what might be in the box, check out Lance’s twitter.
I love that Lance is doing something to encourage more photobooth pictures, one of my most favorite things in the world. As a Harper Perennial employee, I’m probably not eligible to win, but I think I might send in photostrip(s) anyway, just for fun.
Marc Fitten is the author of Valeria’s Last Stand, “a comic romp celebrating late-flowering love in a Hungarian village that will appeal to readers of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society and A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian” (as per Barnes & Noble.) He’s also the man behind Marc Fitten’s Indie 100, a blog that will eventually feature his notes on 100 indie bookstores and what makes them unique. He’s currently up to #37, so there’s still plenty of time to join him on his journey.
I’ve always loved Entertainment Weekly’s PopWatch blog, so I’m excited to check out their new blog about books, Shelf Life. The blog just started a week ago, but they already had the exclusive announcement that Twilight was to be published in graphic novel form and a Q&A with the author of the upcoming Sense & Sensibility & Sea Monsters.
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Check out this great post on one of our favorite sites, The Second Pass. Fired From the Canon lists 10 classics that you should feel no need to read. I tend to chafe at the idea of books-you-absolutely-must-read-or-else-you-may-as-well-be-illiterate anyway; sure, I loved The Corrections and One Hundred Years of Solitude (two of the “skippable” books), but I can see how someone wouldn’t. And I hated On the Road (another skip), but I’m glad I read it, if only to know what everyone else is going on about. And I still say that if you didn’t love The Tender Land, you probably don’t have a heart.