Tuesday, September 11, 2012

How To Be Discovered

Some years ago a man who had written a movie you'd probably remember asked me about writing books.  He told me this story he wanted to write and I couldn't follow it, maybe it was something about super-powers and invisibility.  My agent gave it a definite nyetski.  Movie ideas don't translate into good books.

I think now they do.

Books are more like novelized movies than ever.  I won't name names but think about it.

There are so few ways to rise out of the multitude of books out there.  Some people don't think freebies work anymore.  My good friend thinks they do and runs them constantly.  Do reviews help?  Some say yes but if they're written by drunk trolls then no.  If they're all 5 star whether the book deserves it or not, readers are cynical.

Ya can't win but for losing!

What's the answer?  Be more Hollywood.  Seriously.  Have a high concept story (don't throw everything and the kitchen sink in, that's not high concept, that's the town dump) execute it relatively well, get a great cover, write a great blurb and wait.  People will show up.

Here's 1 definition of high concept Steve Kaire.

"I love high-concept books. A lot of the books I read and represent are high concept and get a lot of film interest. I define high concept as a premise that can be boiled down into one sentence and sets it apart from other stories by its unique hook or angle." –Paige Wheeler, literary agent

High concept is simple and unique.  It is different.  It's not another story about vampires or the zombie apocalypse unless you really have a new twist on it.

It's not about bumping up the gore factor or the porn scenes (altho erotica sells. it's still not high concept).

It doesn't always work but it works so much of the time that people want it.
The movie Speed worked.  Snakes on the Plane didn't.  It should have but no one remembers it now.  The title told the whole story, who had to watch the movie.  Jaws.  The Poseidon Story.

Come up with your own list.  It'll be educational.

If you want a lot of attention fast, this is the way to go.  High Concept.

(No I'm not being horribly shallow talking about movie ideas on the anniversary of 9-11.  I already rewatched the tapes of the morning news shows of the day, I already did my crying, and I'm still certain most people don't get that it's not over.  You can't choose peace when your enemy choses war.)

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