14.5.17

Big Book Of Woe Sale

I self-published "100 Lost Rock Albums From The 1970s" on Amazon in January 2012 and "The Big Book of Woe" in January 2013.

The single Blurb edition of 100 Lost Rock Albums From The 1970s

Because "100 Lost Rock Albums From The 1970s" was priced really low it meant (literally) thousands of people took a chance on it. Mostly people were happy to accept it for what it was - a personal view. The angry, spiteful and downright negative reviews generally came from those outraged that such a selection could dare describe itself as "lost" - but broadly speaking, as many apologists pointed out, lost is a subjective assessment.

People were also confused by the "hidden in plain sight" paradigm - that the idea was to focus on records which had become obscured by the currents of musical fashion. The remaining bitter punters were incensed by typographic errors or even how I put sentences together. Those mistakes I cleaned up in a subsequent edition. I probably should have taken longer to assemble it - or even involved an editor at the outset.

Today in May 2017 I feel good about the 100 Lost book - in the UK, without my asking a single person to review the book, it has finally edged into a four star rating on the back of twenty two reviews. In the US the tally is less strong - three stars on 18 reviews.

The only bound print-out of The Big Big Book Of Woe.

I approached "The Big Book Of Woe" more cautiously, a caution which it turns out was justified. When I priced it, I pushed the figure much higher - to $9.99 - chiefly to reflect the fact that it took months to pull together (from a decade of writing) and that it was over a thousand pages long. In the first instance this meant less sales but also much better reviews. It has five stars in the US and UK.

It wasn't all plain sailing however. I was devastated by a humiliating review in The Wire, a magazine I was convinced I could rely upon for a sympathetic hearing and penned by someone whose activities I had supported. As unjust and ignorant as one thinks this kind of thing is, one can't control it. And certainly as a critic if you dole it out you've got to accept it when it comes right back at you.

For the past three and a half years I've been busy working on an animated documentary about "Vitamin C". Something I styled as a substantive and considered "magnum opus". I finally finished that in February but I have to go through the (equally humiliating) process of submitting it to festivals so it won't be public till later this year.

With the animation out the way I've been able to spend a bit of time catching up with things here. Part of tackling that neglected business means finally getting round to slashing the price of "The Big Book Of Woe" - it shouldn't really be an expensive thing to buy given the spirit it was written. $2.99, its new price, is the lowest Amazon will allow it in that bracket. Time to remove it from the safety of its glass case on the shop-floor!

Simultaneously I've dug out all the images I posted at WOEBOT over the years and made them available in Google Photo Albums (see the links bar at the top). I hope they bring back some happy memories to longstanding readers of my drivel.