Friday, September 13, 2019
Can Authors Get The Last Laugh?
Authors and publicists have looked far and wide to find the secret sauce to influencing people to buy their books or provide them with media coverage. They craft press releases, work the phones, blast off e-mails, or try to call in favors. So what really works? A touch of laughter.
Yes, that’s it. Be funny, witty, and cute.
In an article in Reader’s Digest (September), called Laugh Yourself Smarter, we learn that “humor activates our brain’s and enhances our well-being-perhaps more than anything else.” So how might this apply to your efforts of selling books and securing attention for your book?
If you use humor in your pitches, headlines, conversations, or social media posts you will engage the minds of others at a level that captivates others. Based on the way our brains work, humor activates neurons in a way that opioids would.
The article says: “It can kick off a cascade of brain activity that bathes the neurons in feel-good neurotransmitters and other chemicals. The more neurons that are activated (and the more activated they are), the more pleasure we feel. In essence, learning and problem-solving get us high.”
Humor helps our cognition. It makes us pay attention. It makes us feel good.
So how do you become funnier, not just funny looking?
Reader’s Digest suggests:
· Build your jokes around an incongruity – an inappropriate, above or unusual combination of different ideas.
· Question everything and see the absurdities of everyday life.
· Increase your blood flow (walk, exercise, dance, clean) to get ideas moving.
· Use elements of shock, surprise, word-play, exaggeration, fantasy, outrage, and fear to tell a joke.
Still not feeling funny?
Read books by comedians. Surf the web for memes. Go to a comedy club or listen to your favorite morning zoo radio show. Laughter can be found anywhere and everywhere.
Inject humor into what you do - it disarms people, makes them feel happy, and helps soften the blow when discussing serious or depressing topics.
Late-night talk show hosts get their points across by telling jokes. Why not you? I know being an author is hard and taking on the job of a stand-up comedian is not your plan, but if you can tell a few jokes, you’ll go much further than before. Try it.
Pool of Book Readers Declines
The ugly news is in. No, not talking about the coming of a recession or the re-election of Donald Trump as president, but I am the messenger of this:
The percentage of U.S. adults who said they had read a book in any format over the past 12 months dropped to 74% last year from 79% in 2011, according to Pew Research Center. At that rate of decline, where will we be in 20 years?
A Book Publishing Amendment?
Since 1787, over 11,000 amendments have been proposed to the United States Constitution. Only 27 have been ratified by the states. Among the rejected proposals:
· Forget a presidential election. Just select the office holder by lottery.
· Make divorce illegal.
· Rename our country to the United States of Earth.
Should there he an amendment or two as it relates to books or language or literacy? We have free speech covered, but do we need to assert or protect certain rights to ensure the nation remains one that values reading books, pursing ideas, respecting truth, and preserving English over all foreign tongues and emojis?
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Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at email@example.com. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog ©2019. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent. This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by WinningWriters.com as a "best resource.” He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America.