Thursday, August 20, 2009

Daring suggestions

Megan and I were in Borders the other day. We got some amazing coupons and were looking to spend, so we dove into the coffee-scented treasure trove. One of the first things I saw was a display with several rows of books. You've seen this one. It's got a really popular book on the left in one column labeled, "Like This?" followed by a row of other books labeled, "Then Try These!" What a great idea. Simple, but very necessary. After all, it's tough for fans to know about every series out there that they might enjoy. Unfortunately, whoever put this display together just didn't seem to get it. Example: Like This = Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris, Then Try These= The rest of the Sookie Stackhouse series! Like This = Twilight, Then Try These = All the other Twilight books. And so on.

Not that I have anything against these books. I've said it before and will say it again. These aren't really my personal cup of tea, but are fine for other people. My lovely wife happens to read both of these series. I prefer my vampires with less sparkle and more snarl. To be completely honest, I'm so far behind on my reading that I haven't even given the Sookie books a chance yet. My whole gripe is with this display. This kind of thinking is what stymies the literary industry in general. Like this series? Try MORE OF THE SAME. Fans of the first book aren't stupid. They know there are more in the series. If they don't, they just need to look at the section on the regular shelf where the series is ALREADY arranged for them! The problem here is the store being so lazy that they can't even put some thought into their recommendations. Hey Twilight like Twilight? How about reading the sequel? Ya THINK??? It's not like there's any shortage of "sexy vampire" or "tortured supernatural romance" selections out there to suggest.

Eh, this isn't the downfall of the industry I guess. It did get me fired up and if I can't vent on my own blog where the hell am I supposed to go? Maybe I just caught this Borders on a bad day or perhaps some new, tortured, pale, sparkly southern clerk was hired to stock the shelves. And you know I'm not ranting out of self interest. If Skinners was put on either of those "Then Try These" shelves, the store would be even guiltier of not paying attention.

This is what happens without editors

I'm Marcus Pelegrimas, author of the SKINNERS series. Here you'll find various ramblings about movies, video games, TV, and...oh yeah...those books I write. If there's anything you'd like to discuss, just let me know. I try to update whenever the mood strikes me, so feel free to leave comments. There may be some occasional foul language, but anyone who's too easily offended probably doesn't read my stuff anyway.

Free Stuff

Here's how it goes. As usual, I've got my truckload of promo covers from EOS Books. I'll be going to some conventions, so I hope to see you there and I'll gladly sign your books. If you can't make it to a con, just email me your name, address and any inscription so I can send you a signed cover.

BONUS ---> If you would be so kind as to write up a review for any or all Skinners books and publish it on a site like, Barnes & Noble, Borders, or any other major review site, I can send you something extra. I made up some bookmarks (which I'll sign) and I've even put together some Shimmy's VIP passes (which I'll also sign). Can't guarantee the passes will get you into a real strip club, but I think they look pretty cool. Send me a link to your review along with your name, address and inscription, and I'll get these out to you as well.