Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Love in a time of Troll-era



Today we talk about the internets.

First bit of housekeeping: The UW, being a 21st century tech savvy sorta gal, has created a Facebook page and twitter feed for this here blog (see right hand sidebar). Should you be so inclined to like the Facebook page or follow the twitter feed, it will let you know when there is a new post, if you are into that sorta thing. The UW likes her computer to tell her when to eat, sleep, breathe, and buy birthday cards for her inlaws so she is a fan of anything that can maximize her laziness. So no pressure to like/follow/validate her existence, but she will promise here and now to never spam or update you about the sandwich she ate for lunch or inundate you with videos of kittens playing the harpsichord. It will strictly be new blog posts and links to the New York Times coverage of when she wins the Pulitzer for 'A Farewell to Yarns'.

So, while trolling the internets last week, the UW found this article that proves that literary fame comes in all different unexpected avenues:
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/19/magazine/amanda-hocking-storyseller.html

For those of you too lazy to read it (no judgement), the article is basically about this:

A 26 year old lassie in Austin named Amanda Hocking liked writing and hated high school. She tried a few different genres and then decided no one was writing enough about Trolls. So she did. She wrote a series of love stories involving trolls. She doesn't specify but the UW's guess is we are talking these trolls




And not these trolls.




Anyways, she wrote all these troll stories. And needed to share them with the world. And so, after several rejections from publishing companies, she decided to self publish her stories on amazon. For about 99 cents each. And this is the part that blew the UW away.

"The first day, she sold five books. The next, five more. “I took screen shots a lot,” she said. Then she uploaded another novel and sold a total of 36 books one day in May. “It was like: 36 books? It’s astounding. I’m taking over the world.”

Soon she started selling hundreds of books a day. That June, she sold 6,000 books; that July 10,000. “And then it started to explode. In January, it was over 100,000.” Today, she sells 9,000 books a day."

The UW must tread lightly on the mockery because some of you like Trolls, and even if you aren't a giant Troll advocate, they are pretty much a hop, skip, and a hogwarts away from your vampires and boy-wizards. And this girl has 2 million more dollars than the UW, not to mention a giant fan base and a book deal. Even if it is because of the trolls. Maybe the sweet smell of success has a bit more oaky moss and warty goo to its scent than the UW had always imagined.

The happy ending is that she landed a big ass book deal. Proving that perseverance, a good internet connection, and believing in yourself and/or mythical beings can literally pay off.

"And Hocking wants to reach as many people as possible among the 85 percent or so of the population who don’t have e-readers yet. “For me to be a billion-dollar author,” she would tell me later, “I need to have people buying my books at Wal-Mart.”

Sing it, sister.

1 comment:

tobinelliott said...

I too read about Amanda Hocking's stunning success. My question is, why the hell go with traditional publishing when you're selling 9000 copies a day and have total creative freedom?

I'll never understand that one.