I’d planned to write this time about one of the new book’s medieval characters: Petrarch, a 14th-century chaplain, poet, historian, and philosopher (a true Renaissance Man – a century before there WAS a Renaissance!) But Petrarch’ll have to wait, because I’m pre-empting him to roll out the new video trailer for the book. Two trailers, actually: one for The Inquisitor’s Key, and one for The Bones of Avignon, the U.K. edition. (As with the books, so with the trailers: the only difference is the title & release date. But hey, watch ‘em both!)
Putting the trailers on YouTube – and linking to them on Facebook – makes me realize how fast things are changing. It’s an interesting, exciting, and nail-biting time to be writing books. Bookstores are dropping like flies (three of my favorite book-tour venues died between the 2010 book tour and the 2011 book tour, alas!). E-books now outsell printed books. A big part of my “job” now involves getting smart and strategic about using Facebook and YouTube and Twitter and blogs (not just this blog, but also guest blogs, too) to connect with readers. (If Petrarch – and Gutenberg – were alive now, would they be tweeting???)
I wish I were as smart – as omniscient – as Facebook and Google and the folks who buy their data (which is to say, our data). A few days ago, the mailman delivered two startling pieces of business mail to my house. What surprised me was that they were sent not to me, but to “The Inquisitor’s Key” — at my home address. My own publisher sometimes has trouble keeping track of my address, for pete’s sake … and yet companies that don’t know me from Adam understand that The Inquisitor’s Key emanated from this address. Progress? I’m not so sure … and yet I’m delighted to reap the benefits of cyberspace & hyperlinks. And if I were savvier & richer, who knows, maybe I’d be mining Google and Facebook data to ferret out every man, woman, and child whose cookies & clicks suggest that he or she would absolutely adore the new book.
Sadly, I’m not that savvy; sadder still, I’m not that rich! So for now, I’ll just keep posting blogs here and updates on Facebook. Plus tweets on Twitter (@Jefferson_Bass), starting soon, I promise/threaten (depending on your opinion of Twitter). And I’ll steer everyone I can to the video trailer, which I absolutely love! (Huge shout-out here to my filmmaker friend Buck Kahler, of Nolichucky Pictures, who did a BRILLIANT job making it.) The trailer’s short – 30 seconds – but it packs a lot of punch.
Who knows, maybe this short, small trailer will plant a cyber-seed – somewhere, somehow (are you listening, FB & Google?) – for a 2-hour blockbuster feature film...After you watch the trailer, stick around for the READER POLL. Please let your voice be heard -- comment and vote for your choice. Here's the million-dollar question: Who should play Dr. Brockton -- and his intrepid assistant Miranda -- in the film version?