Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Apocalypse? Now?

My latest release, Dark Need, is hitting the shelves today. Unless, of course, the Apocalypse arrives, in which case, the stores will probably get it out there by the weekend. But my conscience has been steadily kicking me in the ass because there aren't any dogs in my book.

[There should have been dogs. Or a dog.]

It's this thing I found that set me off on the whole dog issue. Did you know that for $34.95 (plus shipping and handling) that you, your honey, your friends and even your beloved pet can star as characters in your very own 175-page, paperback, passion- and intrigue-packed vampire romance novel?

[I didn't. I'm doomed. $34.95 for a 50K book and the reader has to co-author it? Damn. I'm in the wrong end of the business.]

Other than the lame stock title (Vampire Kisses) it does sound like a great deal. I mean, how often do you get the chance to buy a book with your dog in the story?

[I don't know why I didn't think of a dog. Dean Koontz puts dogs in everything. So does Stephen King, only . . . euuuw. You know, I have a great dog. A beautiful dog. Smart. Loyal. And he's had all his rabies shots.]

Statistics tell us that in the U.S., an average of about 50 new books hit the shelves every day. 48 of them are probably vampire fiction, so Dark Need has quite a bit of competition.

[It would have freaked out Harry if I put Buddy in the book. But would Harry have bought the book? Probably not, he reads SF. God only knows how many of the other 49 books hitting the shelf today have dogs as well as vampires in them. This could be the next big thing. Vampires with Dogs fiction.]

By next week, another 300 new novels will land beside my latest. And the new novels will keep coming -- my book will then have to compete with 3,500 of them by the end of the summer and 88,000 by the end of the year. It's a bit like tossing a seashell onto Sanibel Island beach. Blink and it's gone.

[Not if there had been a dog in it, stupid.]

Don't be discouraged. I'm not. People pick up interesting shells all the time. If they like them, they come back for more. They display them, and tell their friends where they found them. Very often they treasure them.

[Like stories with dogs, you twit!]


  1. Anonymous12:35 AM

    Stories with dogs are overrated.

    Now, if you had put your cat in there, it would have truly rawked.

  2. I don't know. I think 2006 will be the year of the guinea pig.

  3. A ferret. A loyal, vampire hating ferret named Colin (why yes, Colin Ferret).

    Ugh, it's late.

  4. A bird! A ferocious, fanged parakeet, called... Eric! Sits on your shoulder and squawks "Pieces of Nate," or "Pieces of Kate..."

  5. OMG, these comments are cracking me up! PBW you are pure genius.

    And I'm not just saying this because you saved my ms - thanks to you, I'm going to put in not one but TWO dogs! Hey, maybe even three!

  6. PBW, dogs are so last year. It should be gold fish. It's good feng shui as well.

  7. Vampires with Dogs fiction.

    No, no, Vampire Dog fiction. You know, where all the vampires are actually dogs.

    It's the next big thing.

  8. Oh, it's out. I bought it yesterday at Waldenbooks.

    And of course we need dogs. Dogs are in because of that Marley and Me book. Although I did pick up a pig book at the library yesterday, so maybe it'll be vampire pigs next.

  9. Anonymous8:50 AM

    ...so maybe it'll be vampire pigs next.

    Yes, because James Howe's already done vampire bunnies.

    ;) Misty

  10. Yeah, and I want that vampire rabbit out of my tomatoes.

  11. 50 new books hit the shelves every day

    NOW I'm terrified. When my first paperback hits next month, it has to compete with 50 new books... i think i'm going to go hide.

    and there is no way vampire pigs could ever hope to compete with Bunnicula. Bunnicula stands alone. *G* i've already bought the set for my seven year old daughter.

  12. I got mine on Friday, Sheila! And I saw some copies at Borders even before that.

  13. Anonymous9:53 AM

    I bought mine last night! even though the liers at chapters said it was gonna be out by May. I'm on chapter four and I have to tell you, I'm not pining for adog in the story :P

  14. Anonymous10:40 AM

    Picked up my copy at BAM on Sunday. They had gotten 8 copies and only one was left on the shelf. The clerk said that they would have to re-order. I thought that sounded good, since she had only put them on the shelf on Saturday. I'm just getting into it and enjoying it. Of course as soon as I finish, I will be looking for the next one.

  15. Heh...you know I never pondered the importance of dogs in stories. As for your newest book, I've got it on order through Barnes and Noble online.

    *Looks over at her one eyed, simple minded, cocker spaniel. Hmmm...

  16. In Koontz's defense (as if he needs defending), I think he once said that his publishers were always pushing him to put in the dogs, because the first time he did, the book was a bestseller.

    I have two dogs in mine.

  17. Okay, I lied. But I can add one if you think I should...

  18. Got my copy last week at WalMart, they only had two left on the shelf. I plan on starting it today.

    Dog books are great; Lassie, The Dog Who Wouldn't Be, Big Red, The Incredible Journey ..... just to name a few, but my boys decided a long time ago that when the dog is a supporting character he almost always gets killed by the end of the book.

    And I agree with Shi, Bunnicula would be hard to top.

  19. I'm so relieved there's a dog in my next novel! No vampires, though. Damn. I'm screwed.

  20. Anonymous2:38 PM

    Dog? Cat?

    Uh oh. There are no pets in either of the two manuscripts I'm working on.

    Should I be worried?


  21. I've got a couple of watch llamas, they're like dogs that carry stuff. Would they work? Ann
    P.S. Cats rule! Dogs are just "Big Drooly Monsters" (according to my cat, anyway).

  22. Anonymous3:00 PM

    I'm currently working on a major project involving a vampiric halfbreed pig-dog who falls in love with a hamster . . .

    Not fooling anyone, am I . . .

  23. Oddly enough, I just posted about the importance of dogs in fiction yesterday. Hmmmm. Synchronicity, anyone?

  24. Well! That explains why I couldn't find Dark Need at either the San Antonio or Memphis airports. No dog in the story. I'm certain if a dog had just been casually inserted at page 43, both airports would have carried and prominently displayed Dark Need.

    No worries. I'm picking the book up anyway.

    This year, vampire dogs. Wasn't it vampire snakes just a few years ago? Remmber that Far Side cartoon a few years ago with people with snakes hanging off them?

    Congrats on the new release!


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