Weird day. Only one to-do on my list, yet I couldn't quite...do it. At least, not yet. I did read Lucia Perillo's I've Heard the Vultures Singing: Field Notes on Poetry, Illness and Nature, which was amazing. Here's a review of the book by Ron Slate, who does very thoughtful criticism over at his blog On the Seawall.
& I did dig into an issue of BOMB magazine that I'd brought from home. I love how the magazine spans multiple artistic genres: I dream of being reviewed in BOMB. I took it as an implicit endorsement that not one but two VCCA fellows picked it up off the couch beside me and attempted to carry it away, mistaking it for a house subscription.
& I did eat too many slices of Stroehmann's whole wheat bread, which isn't even particularly grainy; it's the Disney version of whole wheat.
None of these things do a to-do make.
Thanks to Tayari Jones for pointing me toward this very smart, very true guide (if somewhat wordy) guide to online publicity by Lindsay Robertson. Here's my favorite tip, with the highlights in bold:
"2. Pick Eight Blogs"
"I went to drinks with the Brilliant Online Publicist one night, and asked her how she did such a good job while everyone else was failing. I was also curious about why she chose to invest so much time in the then pretty new (partially) TV-focused site I co-edited--frequently sending me emails about what was going on on one of her client’s shows at that very second, and asking me if I was interested in a clip. In probably the majority of cases, she’d nailed something that I actually was interested in, but hadn’t seen, because I was blogging constantly and couldn’t watch every goddamned TV show. With me, this publicist had a success rate of probably 60%, because she chose her content carefully and made sure it fit my needs. I’m sure she had a similar success rate with her other seven blogs.
Was she clairvoyant? No: she just actually READ MY BLOG and knew the kind of things I liked to write about. How did she have time to give so much attention to the needs of a then relatively small website? She told me her secret: she only publicizes to eight blogs. She picked the eight blogs that covered her client’s subject, TV, that she liked the most on a personal level, read them religiously, and only sent them only the content she thought each blog would be into. While the rest of the publicists in her company were sending out mass emails to everyone, hoping to get bites from Perez Hilton, Gawker, HuffPo, or wherever, this publicist focused on a lower traffic tier with the (correct) understanding that these days, content filters up as much as it filters down, and often the smaller sites, with their ability to dig deeper into the internet and be more nimble, act as farm teams for the larger ones. A site can be enormously influential without having crazy eyeballs, because all eyeballs are not equal. MANY times--I would say almost every time, that I posted one of her client’s items on my site, they were linked back within hours by the big guys, who probably would have tuned her out otherwise. As counter-intuitive as it might seem to publicists, the “pick eight blogs” (or however many, but a manageable number) strategy is much more successful than the throw it against the wall and see what sticks theory. It also has the added benefit of making the publicist feel like his or her hard work is meaningful, and that his or her successes are not flukes."
Someone called me "skinny" tonight at the dinner table. After all that bread! I could have kissed her.
It's almost 11 PM. I walked back in the cold (howling, or at least whistling, wind) to get to this damn studio. Fuzzy socks on. Back to work.