Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Adopt The Book Publishing Platform – A Vote for Books!

The Republicans and Democrats recently had their conventions and speeches were given, rallies were held, and party platforms were issued.  The process left us with Trump vs. Clinton.  What if the book industry gathered in a similar fashion and declared its platform?  What would such a document include – or exclude?

There are different interests involved here, including published authors, publishers, editors, promoters, marketers, salesmen, bookstores, libraries, printers, digital device producers, book shepherds and packagers, and cover designers.  There are also book collectors, teachers, bibliophiles, linguists, and many others with a stake in the book world. Everyone is all in on certain issues, especially where it involves expanding book availability, free speech protection, and helping others obtain literacy.  But there will be disagreements over things like author royalties and the rights of writers.

Perhaps we should start with the things there is a consensus for.  The book industry hereby pledges:

·         To publish quality books with great accuracy and honesty.

·         To publish books in all genres in order to meet the reading tastes of all people, from erotica, true-crime, and LGBTQ, to poetry and short essays, to politics, business, health, women’s studies, self-help and scores of other genres and sub-categories.

·         To publish books in all formats – audio, e-book, vook, paperback, hardcover and mass market – and to vary the cover prices to ensure both affordability to the reader and profit to the publisher.

·         To promote the value of the written word and to encourage more people to acquire the ability to read by supporting literacy programs with money, time, and books.

·         To defend the First Amendment whenever there’s a challenge and to educate the youngest to our oldest on tolerance for free speech, even when the level of speech seems questionable or undeniably racist, sexist, anti-American, and unethical.

·         To preserve and promote the long history of books and publishing.

·         To help people develop into writers and to encourage all writers to improve the practice of their craft.

·         To ensure the existence and expansion of bookstores.

      To create a better way to catalog, summarize, and locate books.

·         To increase the number of non-book stores that sell books.

·         To fully support our libraries with the goals of expanding hours, building new locations and increasing the quality and size of existing collections and services.

·         To speak out against author hoaxes, plagiarism, book piracy, and copyright violations.

·         To speak out against those who seek to punish or bully writers who want to tell the truth or challenge the status quo.

·         To protect, save, and refurbish historical buildings, documents, books, maps, and other treasures related to writing, publishing and reading.

      To help those with a disability such as blindness, or a learning disorder such as dyslexia or ADHD, to gain access to books.

·         To educate people to be fulfilled readers who not only engage in a book but come out of the experience smarter, happier, inspired or more deeply moved.

·         To educate people to be savvy readers, where they can read between the lines and know when to question their views as well as those of the writer.

·         To make sure there is a balance in book retail, that conglomerates are tempered by indies, and an alternate means of purchasing books exists.

·         To make sure the voices of what and who is published remains diverse.

·         To promote self-publishing as a viable option but to insure that self-publishing holds high standards for every aspect related to producing a book.

·         To promote honesty in book reviews and to increase the number of book reviewing outlets.

      To preserve our world against Netspeak, Ebonics, Spanglish, and the bastardization of the language and lazy grammarians.

·         To embolden readers to live out the words they read, and to act in accordance with their values and the ideas presented in books.

·         To shun calls for book bans, boycotts, book burnings or censorship – and instead to encourage the peaceful protest of a book’s content, and in certain cases, to feel obligate to demand that others speak out against harmful or hate-filled writings.

My fellow Americans, it is with great honor and pleasure that I ask you to adopt this platform in your home and heart. Honor these principles by living them and espousing them to others.  Grow a mind, share a book.  Read.  Write.  Teach.  Our world’s future is inextricably linked to books.  Open a book and you turn the page to a new world.

To learn more on how to promote books, read my greatest blog posts from the past five years and 2,000 posts:

2016 Book Marketing & Book Publicity Toolkit

2015 Book Marketing & PR Toolkit

2014 Book Marketing & PR Toolkit

Book Marketing & Book PR Toolkit: 2013

Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog 2016.

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