PR of Authors

Do you ever wonder about the PR of authors?  Many times, their books are in the public’s eye more than they are, but aren’t they just as famous as other actors?  Nicholas Sparks, J.K. Rowling, and many other authors have written well-known books, but would you really recognize them if you saw them?  According to my roommate, “If you saw Nicholas Sparks walking on the street, you would not recognize him, but if you saw him on a beach with wind-blown hair, you would know who he is.”

Authors are put in the spotlight when they are releasing a new book (even though they usually must have written a prior, successful book in order to be put in this spotlight).  Every single word they speak (or write) is critiqued.  Remember when J.K. Rowling told the world that Dumbledore was gay?  Remember the reaction of people who do not support the lifestyle of those who are gay?  Who did her PR?  How did she continue to have sales that skyrocketed despite the uproar at this announcement?  Or was this her tactic to garner the attention of people who are gay?  Was she really doing PR for her book?

I feel the PR done by authors is very subtle, if not non-existent.  I cannot remember the last time I heard a Nicholas Sparks book being promoted before its release.  Even the new hit books by Stephenie Meyer were not promoted until the release of its movie.  Personally, I do not hear about many wonderful books that I would enjoy reading until they are made into a movie, such as The Notebook, The Secret Life of Bees, Twilight, etc.

However, is this technique a way to give the authors protection from the media?  Actors and actresses do not have this attention, but by writing a book, the characters are put in the spotlight, the author lives through the characters, AND the author does not get bombarded by unnecessary press (besides the desired press about his/her work).  Maybe authors have it the right way…



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