Thursday, September 27, 2012

What I've Really Been Doing The Past Decade

Although it may seem from this blog that all I do is run, hike, drink beer, and fly back and forth between KS and Salt Lake (to say nothing of gchatting and reading fasterskier), I do work on occasion. And every once in a great while I even have something to show for it.

Both of my books* are now officially out (though publication dates are becoming increasingly meaningless in an era when books are available on Amazon weeks before the official release date). I can't stand it when authors spam their friends ... but luckily I've decided that promoting one's books on a blog is entirely different and completely acceptable. And just for the record, I may fancy myself an intellectual, but I unabashedly hope to sell hundreds of thousands of books so I can buy Jeanine a beach house and then a ski house to boot. [Hey, the boss still celebrates when his albums go to #1, and the Beatles apparently often said things like "Ok let's write ourselves a new pool" when they sat down to compose.] You can buy my books here:

* Although I write "both of my books," please note that officially I am the author of only one and half books, the phrase testily used by a colleague in a faculty meeting to protest my comment that I was too busy to read job application files carefully because "I have two books to finish." But more seriously, John Fliter is the co-author of Fighting Foreclosure.  

The reality is that most academic books sell in the mid-hundreds of copies. So heck, consider this entry a plea to support any author writing a carefully made book designed to produce knowledge rather than turn a profit, not a plea to buy mine. (And this has nothing to do with my ongoing defense of paper -- go ahead and buy the Kindle edition!) I could give you a long speech about the incredible cost of putting out a serious academic book -- from the ceaseless work of the editor (thank you, Robert and Michael) to the lengthy peer review process to the remarkable character-by-character copy-editing (thank you, Richard and Carol) to the indexing (thank you, Bonny) to the design to the publicity (thank you, Jeff and Susan) to sending out a bunch of free copies to journals, etc. -- in an era when even many research university libraries are no longer buying most of the major presses' lists -- and I could ask you to ask yourself, "How much content have I pilfered off the internet the past few years?" -- but I will spare you.

Thanks to my great publicist Kathlene Carney I've been making the radio rounds a bit. You can listen to a podcast of one of my interviews here by clicking on 905/, and I'll be on the airwaves in Portland and Park City soon. If anyone knows Diane Rehm, please send her this blog!

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