|The one on the left still rules.|
I planned on taking the past week off. Just play with my grandkids, enjoy Mykonos in July, do nothing but chill. Not to happen. A request from my publisher for a “brief” contribution to its in-house author website on the subject of “Practical Advice on Setting up a Book Tour or Signing,” took up the weekend (check out the photo of two silver-haired MIEers headlining the post). I’m really not complaining. After all, it’s the least I could do now that my publisher has agreed to announce that Jeffrey Siger is actually only a pen name. My real name is Jesus Christ.
No disrespect intended, but that’s just about the only name I can conceive of possibly driving J.K. Rowling off the top of worldwide bestseller lists before Christmas. Unless you’ve been locked up incommunicado in a cave for the past week, if you’re reading this blog you undoubtedly know that Harry Potter’s creator saw her first crime novel, The Cuckoo’s Calling, published in April under the pen name Robert Galbraith. It received terrific reviews (no surprise there) but sold only 500 copies of 1500 shipped until some lawyer for Ms. Rowling (presumably her soon to be ex-lawyer) told the secret to his wife’s best friend (interesting story possibility there, Ms. Rowling) who leaked it on twitter, leading to the grand denouement in The Sunday Times this week.
It is said that Ms. Rowling is very “disappointed” at the behavior of her attorneys who swear there was no promotional motive whatsoever behind the leak and that their client was thoroughly enjoying her anonymity. Whatever the case, and I tend to believe Ms. Rowling, mystery authors everywhere owe her a distinct debt of gratitude for several reasons.
First, for letting the world know what it’s truly like for virtually everyone but she to be a mystery writer: Even if you publish a book that reviewers love, selling it to the public is a whole different thing. Second (though absolutely not the situation with my publisher), for sticking a big moutza (see my post of two weeks ago) in the face of every publisher who, as a matter of routine, blames the book rather than inept or non-existent promotion for underperforming sales. And, third, for giving many of us the satisfaction of bragging to the world that, for one small moment in time, our book sales actually out performed J.K. Rowling’s!
Which brings me to the point of all this.
I’ve tried to keep it quiet but Edward Snowden has learned that my new book coming out September 3rd, Mykonos After Midnight, is actually the secret life story of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis as told to Princess Diana through Shirley MacLaine. And if you don’t believe me just ask my editor, Edgar Allen Poe. Order now, before the rush.