Thursday, January 28, 2021

Book Publishing Needs Its Super Bowl Moment

The 55th Super Bowl will take place this year with the likelihood of massive television ratings and sold-out television advertising time — at a rate of $11 million per minute! It has been the biggest television spectacle for decades. Even those who don’t know a sack from a holding penalty will watch. The ads, halftime show, and wing, pizza, and beer-fueled pregame partying are now American rituals. Can the book world ever approach having such a unifying event?

Sports and entertainment industries have championship games and awards nights to honor and promote their worlds. Books? Crickets.

Why can’t book publishing have a star-studded two-hour televised event that celebrates literacy and the power of books, that honors great writers and industry professionals? Dramatized book readings. Awards. Interviews. Speeches that empower the creative writer and curious reader in each of us. It could be amazing. But no one is doing it. Why?

Why should books play second fiddle to Netflix and the NFL? Granted, more people prefer to binge a show or watch athletes do battle on the field, but it doesn’t mean the book world, one that sells tens of billions of dollars of books annually, can’t get together to promote its product and people.

Why not make the show a telethon, raising funds and books to aid literacy in America? Make it about free speech. Show the powerful impact books have had on famous and successful people — or to influence social activism and movements. Let a dad talk about reading to children or a grandmother read to the newest generation.

All genres should be acknowledged, from erotica to faith, adult nonfiction to children’s fantasy, poetry to textbooks.

People should learn how an idea becomes a book. They should hear what acquisition editors, publicists, cover designers, booksellers, editors, book reviewers, social media marketers, literary agents, and publishers actually do. The show can take us behind the scenes to appreciate why and how books come to be.

Social media, films, television, sports, and video games already dominate the mindshare of people. Let’s rally for books!

So, as you guzzle down and munch on your Super Bowl fare, enjoy what could be a great game and all of the sideshow fixin’s — and think about how we can gather together to watch a show by, about, and for the book world.


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Brian Feinblum, the founder of BookMarketingBuzzBlog, can be reached at  You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog ©2021. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester with his wife, two kids, and Ferris, a black lab rescue dog. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s The Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by BookBaby and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by as a "best resource.” He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America. For more information, please consult: 

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