Monday, June 11, 2007

The End of the End?

Actually, that's a song from Paul McCartney's new CD. There was a time when a new Paul McCartney CD meant a mandatory "album release party" (beer, pizza and all attention riveted towards my stereo speakers). After his last two CDs were so disappointing that the only thing that got me through the "party" was the beer, I opted to download and preview his latest, "Memory Almost Full," in quiet anonymity, on my iPod while I ran. Glad to say it's a step up from his last, critically acclaimed CD, "Chaos and Creation in the Backyard." All it took was for Paul to stop writing catchy, disposable pop songs for the critics to finally take him seriously. Of course, catchy, disposable pop songs are what I like most about him to begin with. Quick, which Beatles song would you rather have stuck in your head: "Penny Lane" or "Wild Honey Pie?"

The improperly-placed second to last song is called "The End of the End," and it's a nice little ballad, almost on a par with his better solo ballad work, albeit with better lyrics. It's got me thinking about my first book (I can call it that now, since I've started on my second). It's finally sinking in that it may not, in fact, sell. Or at best, be the second book in a two-book deal. My agent said he was optimistic that he would run into a bunch of promising contacts at Book Expo America in New York last week, the end-all, be-all yearly publishing event for agents, publishers, authors and booksellers. But when he got back, he said it was mainly throngs of people (mainly book fans) milling around, getting books signed and looking for free stuff. He said he made one contact, but other than that, he was going to concentrate on his list of small presses and see where that gets us.

He keeps saying the market is depressed and a mainstream book by a first-time author is a particularly hard sell these days, and I believe him. Things like podcasts, downloadable content, YouTube, NetFlix and...even...blogs are competing with the almighty book for people's attention spans these days. So as I type this, I'm undermining myself. And not working on my second book, which may one day be my first book, as far as the reading public is concerned.

Better get busy.


r2 said...

I've decided I really don't like Paul McCartney. I've spent so much money on him and he always disappoints.

Bill Cokas said...

Sad when you sink 40 years of worship into someone and then decide you were misguided all along, isn't it?

r2 said... you have a review yet?