This love letter to my readers was supposed to be written three months ago. My blogging is as timely as ever.
October 16, 2011 was a very special day for me. It marked five years since Book 1 came out. It’s never been a hot seller by mainstream publishing standards, but it has most certainly sold. It’s still selling at a steady rate and I do very little to publicize it (that’s changing as of this year). It inspired other people to write similar books or do similar things. I like to think it was a moment where people connected to the industry saw there was a need to take it seriously as a business and they could create business-related offerings without unnecessary justifications or the worry that there wasn’t a market.
Would I rewrite it? Oh yes. But I recently re-read it and it wasn’t quite as bad as I remembered it being. (This has nothing to do with what I think about its value to others, only what I — the author — thinks about my own writing from the perspective of self-criticism.)
A lot has happened to me in the last five years. A lot has happened to the economy in the last five years. Still, that book has helped male readers stand in an escort’s shoes and has helped many woman understand what escort work requires from them before they take their first client. That was the whole point of the book. I get feedback from readers almost every day. It’s always humbling, especially the positive ones (this doesn’t mean I’m a free-advice hotline, though I always want to help). You’re all very welcome.
I’m not using Lulu.com either but catching up on my reading, I was very amused by this bit from a NY Times piece on self-publishing:
Indeed, said Robert Young, chief executive of Lulu Enterprises, based in Raleigh, N.C., a majority of the company’s titles are of little interest to anybody other than the authors and their families. “We have easily published the largest collection of bad poetry in the history of mankind,” Mr. Young said.
If you’re a fan of bad poetry, you know where to go!
The DIY trend is interesting. Due to technology (currently partially due to the economy), everyone is doing their own blogs, their own promotion, their own websites — whether escorts, writers/poets or small businesses. I like to think it’s giving power to the people but often it just loses one in the crowd. If you aren’t in a given online social circle, you have NO IDEA that other person exists because the pick-and-choose Internet is replacing mass media. It’s as isolating as living in a small village back when buggies had square wheels and only the rich had horses.*
Not that I’m crying over spilt mass media, I’m simply musing. I think a digital ceiling is forming.
*The square wheels thing is a comical exaggeration.
Back in January, I was contacted by a producer from the Dr. Phil show. I was hand-picked, he said, because he liked my other interviews and what I had to say. I would be the only one in my position (“pro-prostitution”) on the show. The topic was the whole CraigsList ad verification/sexual trafficking thing. That I currently advertise on CL (under another name), is a plus. Jim Buckmaster was supposed to be there, along with several state Attorney Generals and some women arrested from CL stings. I was told that there was going to be some massive new stings off CL and these women would be given the option of jail or the show. [I won't discuss that, you're welcome to draw your own conclusions.]
Well, Operation Innocence Lost did indeed make some arrests. I was ready for the show. Or at least prepping hard for it. I was finally told the show would be recorded March 18 in LA. They would pay for my expenses. Nice!
One side effect from all the slanted attention lately could be disappointed readers and bad Amazon reviews.
Depending on where they heard of the book, if their hands aren’t burned when they touch it, will they be disappointed? Or if I don’t start out telling them how to be a whore and how much to charge and where to find good pimps, are they going to be disappointed? Will my serious discussion on STDs lack the bimbo quality they were hoping for? Will they not appreciate the dearth of “sex with clients” tips? Or my lack of discussing the good strolls in major cities? Are they going to be mad I don’t tell them which brand of stiletto is most comfortable for standing on concrete? Are they hoping to be brainwashed into selling their bodies for money and think the book sucks if they don’t decide to put an ad on CraigsList?
Just an idle thought…
May 8, 2008 Adventures in Small Publishing
There’s been a small blitz of media attention directed at me (I haven’t been updating stuff, though, I’m behind). And it’s not at all when I expected or asked for it. My relationship is over so I moved to regroup and finish Book #2. I figured on a fairly quiet existence for the next couple months. Instead, all of this hits the fan the very day that I moved (right after I unplugged my computer, apparently).
What’s amusing is a lot of people think I just published the book to capitalize on the Spitzer thing. They don’t do enough fact-checking to discover its public-release date was mid-October 2006. Less amusing is how they mangle my bio or misquote something they read about me on the Internet, written by someone else.
Last night on XBN, I discussed this with Jill (rambled, actually). These are some residual thoughts on my brief experiences with the media as a self-identified sex worker.