The internet lit up with rumors and tweets that the world’s last typewriter factory had closed. Though obituary now appears a bit premature, it's another reminder of how much the world of the writer is changing. Most writers ditched their typewriters years ago, but when it comes time to sell books, many are finding old media needs new media. Now once they write their books, they may need to write multimedia marketing campaigns…or they could just get booked on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.
T.J. English went on the Comedy Central hit show a few weeks ago toting a copy of his latest effort, The Savage City, a story of race, murder and a generation on edge in the New York of 1960s and early 70s. Here’s how it went:
English posted this on his Facebook page just after his appearance:
“Here's what The Daily Show can do for an author: yesterday, THE SAVAGE CITY was at #2,500 on Amazon.com. After I appeared on the show yesterday the book, as we speak, is at #71 and still rising. That is what you call a BUMP. To those of us who celebrate and revere the writing and reading of books, Jon Stewart is the Mack.”
A week later his book was #30 on the New York Times Best Seller List. English is doing a lot other radio, TV, print interviews as well as readings and signings and he’s got a sharp new website designed by another Irish American, Brian Corrigan. Corrigan also developed a great-looking site for author Peter Quinn, called www.newyorkpaddy.com when Quinn’s The Man Who Never Returned came out a few month ago. And he just rolled-out www.danbarryonline.com for Dan Barry of the New York Times, who knocked it out of the park with Bottom of the 33rd: Hope, Redemption and Baseball's Longest Game which hit booksellers a couple of weeks ago. Barry got a great big-media boost when he and the subject of his book were featured on the highly-rated CBS Sunday Morning. Here’s a look:
David Monagan moved to from Connecticut to Ireland about a decade ago and wryly wrote about the changes he saw and experienced in Ireland Unhinged, published on St. Patrick’s Day. He returned stateside for a frantic fortnight of readings, signings and interviews. He didn’t sit down with Jon Stewart, but getting into this extended on-air conversation with WNYC’s influential Leonard Lopate is a media opportunity sought by most serious authors.
Mary Pat Kelly found a great way to promote the paperback release of her epic Galway Bay—just get a top film producer, Jean Doumanian to develop it for television. While that process plays out, Kelly also has been reading, signing and doing interviews, while keeping up her online presence though her website and a good-looking Facebook site. On Mon., May 9, she’ll team up with classically trained singer Mary Deady at New York’s American Irish Historical Society to present an evening of songs and stories inspired by the tale of her family's journey from 1840's Ireland to Chicago. (This event is free of charge and open to the public, but please reserve seats by calling (212) 288-2263.)
MEDIA PINGS: Speaking of Irish American writers, the first general membership meeting of the Irish American Writers and Artists will be held Mon., May 2 at 6pm at the Irish Consulate, 345 Park Ave, New York, NY. But this event is for members only and you must RSVP in order to clear security, so if you’d like to join, please go to the IAW&A website.