Archive for January 2010

How not to promote your crappy self-published book, part II

I just received the following email:

My name is Sterling Nixon.  I recently published a book entitled The Sea Kings of Rome: Champions of the Naumachia through Black Rose Writing (ISBN 978-0-9825823-2-9).  The novel is appropriate for individuals 13 and up, and yet complex enough to thrill adult readers.  It is as historically accurate as it is exciting.
Publishing a book is a new experience for me and I am constantly searching for ways to increase my local exposure.  I know how influential library selections can be and I am hoping that The Sea Kings of Rome: Champions of the Naumachia is something that you will consider stocking in your library (It is available for sale on the Barnes and Noble website).  I am also interested in setting up a local Q&A at the library-if that is possible.
The Sea Kings of Rome chronicles the lives of two famous gladiators and their difficult choices between good and evil.  My book reflects the moral and ethical struggles we all encounter in life.  The Sea Kings of Rome is a story of redemption and culminates in the Roman Coliseum with an account of the only gladiatorial battle ever recorded.

Thank you for your time.  Please feel free to contact me with any questions..

You just can’t make this stuff up. I’m guessing that wherever my new buddy Sterling found me, it wasn’t from this blog… :) Maybe it was at “the library.” You know the one, The Library. Or maybe Benito Lombardi told him.

How not to promote your crappy self-published book

I’m getting more and more of these types of emails, and they’re really starting to irk me. So, here’s one from yesterday for your mocking pleasure:

I am a history professor and advisor to the local chapter of the Roman Historical Society. The Roman Historical Society is a society focused on preserving roman history by ways of education, living history, and research. I recently read a historical fiction that is detailed and painstakingly accurate regarding Roman genre. The book also details the only recorded gladiatorial fight in the Roman coliseum. I ask you to please make one or more copies of this book available in the library for the benefit of our members. The book is entitled “The Sea Kings of Rome – Champions of the Naumachia” – ISBN 978-0-9825823-2-9.
Thank you in advance,
Dr. Benito Lombardi

Uh huh. First of all, “Dr. Benito Lombardi,” I don’t work in “the library.” (You know — THE library.) In fact, I don’t work in any library. The fact that you can use Google and found my name associated with the word “library” somewhere doesn’t really count. I’m glad that you enjoyed reading “a historical fiction,” but here’s a current fiction: You aren’t “Dr. Benito Lombardi.” In fact, I’m pretty sure that your real name is Sterling Nixon, and that you enjoy writing repetitive 5-star reviews of your own book on Barnes & Noble. (Psst — try Amazon next; more people will see them there.)

And as for Black Rose Writing, there’s a classy vanity publisher. I can’t decide what I like better: The owner’s 5-star reviews of his own books and other Black Rose-related books on Amazon, or their fancy website full of grammatical errors and misspellings.

I’m pleased to see that no WorldCat libraries own this title yet. Here’s one for you, “Dr. Benito Lombardi” — no one buy this. This belongs in no libraries, partially because if it’s written as badly as this email (ooh! and the author’s blog!) it has no place in a library, and partially because liars shouldn’t be rewarded.