Re: RARA-AVIS: Strange news about Jmes Ellroy

From: Mario Taboada (
Date: 13 Jul 2000

Interesting. If I read between the lines correctly, this is a publicity stunt. Ellroy's GQ pieces were probably tossed off very quickly (I don't think they are very good, or at least not as good as they could be). He now gets a lot of free publicity because of the auction -- not a good way for the seller to get the best price, which is why it seems to be a gimmick -- and recycles the pieces as novelty items (Ellroy downloads is kool). He also plants himself firmly in the minds of potential readers as a Stephen King-caliber heavyweight, attracts techies, very likely gets to do his act online -- and his next novel sells like hot cakes. Mad dog schtick and all, Ellroy seems to be a sharp businessman.

At least, that's my interpretation of this piece of news. I'd be surprised if it doesn't show up in the Wall Street Journal during the next few days.

The lesson here may be that self-promotion in the Net and e-publishing are the way of the future. It's a better prospect for authors than the stodgy (add other adjectives here) publishing world.



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