Tuesday, February 26, 2008

It's Not Boasting If It's News

A workshop alum recently emailed me with news that her book is on the shortlist for a major foreign award. She ended with:
Do Americans know about this book award?
I responded:
They certainly will if you send a brief notice to GalleyCat.
She answered:
Erm...won't he take it that I'm bragging?
I shot back:
It's PROMOTION, not bragging. Look at your notes from my workshop!
To recap:
Publicity rules tend to be the opposite of social rules. If you meet someone at a party, the first thing you say shouldn't be, "My book is on the shortlist for the X Prize." You would be a boastful boor, and likely spend the rest of the party nursing your drink alone in a corner. But that is the very first thing you should put in a press release, or in your newsletter, or on your home page. Why? Because it's important news.

P.S. I sent the notice to GalleyCat, with the names of all the prize nominees. It was digested and
duly posted. (And not because I sent it; because it was NEWS.)

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