Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Are Book Readings an Effective Marketing Strategy?

I gave a talk last week at Brooklyn College on How to Pull an All-Nighter When You Don't Have To. The talk was about how a number of overachievers like Tesla, Freud, and Balzac didn't restrict their all-nighters like many college students to their university years, but they pulled all-nighters on a regulars basis throughout their careers to maximize the amount of time they devoted to working on their passions.

After a couple of years of doing marketing for my books, I'm not sure that giving readings and talks are good for book sales, which may be the reason why Frederick Seidel never gives readings of his poetry. I even suspect that some authors give readings for pretentious reasons. For example, so they can say things like, "I have reading tonight at _____." or "I just wrapped up my book tour. I went to ___ different cities!"

I may give one more reading at a nearby university - only because I'm passionate about sharing my knowledge of the topic; however, I'm skeptical about the talk's significance on book sales. It may be better to spend those few hours working on the next book or a blog post, which definitely has a positive effect on book sales.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Ephebophile Poets and Novelists

I wrote in The Allure of Nymphets and on The Allure of Nymphets' blog that according to Wyatt Mason of the New York Times, a favorite subject of poets for centuries has been man’s attraction to beautiful young women i.e, nymphets. For example, past poets Dante, Petrarch, John Donne and Poe and contemporary poets Frederick Seidel and Charles Bukowski all wrote about nymphets and/or were in age-discrepant relationships. 

And a number of famous novelists are no different. For example, Leo Tolstoy, Franz Kafka, Charles DickensErnest Hemingway, Philip Roth and  J.D. Salinger wrote books with an ephebophile protagonist and/or the authors were in age-discrepant relationships. 

Let's combine the two by looking at a poem about an ephebophile author. 

In a clean, well-lighted place by Charles Bukowski 

the old fart [Ernest Hemingway]. he used his literary reputation

to reel them in one at a time,
each younger than the last.

he liked to meet them for luncheon and
and he’d talk and listen to them
whatever wife or girlfriend he had at the moment
was made to
understand that this sort of thing made him
“young again.”
the young ladies vied to bed down with

in between, he continued to write,
late at night in his favorite bar
liked to talk about writing and his amorous
actually, he was just a drunk
who liked young ladies,
writing itself,
and talking about writing.
wasn't a bad life.