Arts and Entertainment, Authors, Books, Reading

Publication Year and Relevance: Why I Review and Recognize Older Books

“Older books.” A relative term in itself.

In publishing, it often doesn’t take long for new books to become old news, so to speak. A book may only receive “new release” recognition or be eligible for certain new release promotions within 14 or 30 days of its publication. “See What’s New!” a sign in a bookstore or a public library will urge readers with excitement, spotlighting a special display of titles. But ultra-visible placement only lasts a short time before most books are put up on the regular shelves with all the others, usually with just their spines showing. And library and bookstore shelf space is limited, so books that don’t garner enough interest fast enough will be replaced with different books.

Book contests and award organizations tend to accept entries or nominations for books that are not yet published or that have been published within the organization’s current calendar year. Any other books are, well, too old.

Oh, a single book may have multiple releases, in a sense, particularly if the author is popular. A publisher may release a hardback before the trade paperback edition of a book is released, and then a mass market paperback may follow some time afterward. The audio and ebook versions of that book may also become available at different times. Multiple formats releasing at staggered times might help a book to remain “new news” for a longer stretch.

Yet, not every title is an award winner, becomes a bestseller while it’s new, or is written by an award-winning or bestselling author. It may only be a matter of months from the time when a book is released to the point when the publisher stops buzzing about it. I don’t blame publishers for that. If they spent all their time and money trying to actively market every book on their ever-growing backlists, there wouldn’t be enough time and money to push the newer books they’re continually putting out.

Even so, I know that a relevant book doesn’t lose its relevance just because it hits the six-month or one-year mark since its publication. I know that a meaningful novel doesn’t lose its meaningfulness just because the “new release” sparkle has sparkled off. I know that a well-written and profound story doesn’t cease to be well-written and profound just because the initial marketing has ceased or the initial buzz about the story has died down.

Yeah, a book may only have a short time to prove itself in sales and reviews and such before publishers are moving on and promoters/advertisers are looking for the next new thing. But, hey, I won’t even get into all the works through the years that may not have had the best reception or may not have become instant hits after their original releases, but audiences have come to recognize the merit of those works after all.

So, I don’t only seek out and read new, recently published books. I don’t only review new books. I don’t only share and recommend new books. New books aren’t the only ones that show up on my annual book award lists. Yes, I even share my enthusiasm about books that are out of print, and interested readers may have to buy or borrow a used copy, as I did.

A book might have first been published yesterday, or it might have first been published hundreds of years ago. If that book is meaningful, relevant, and well-written, then that’s what it is, regardless of its publication year.

An author may only have so much time or finance to promote their own books, and no author will be able to promote their work forever. But other people—especially readers—keep books circulating, start up new buzz, wield word-of-mouth power to get more people reading and benefiting from an author’s words.

Whether a good story is old, new, or somewhere in between, it takes a community of book lovers to keep that story alive.

 

Advertisements
Arts and Entertainment, Books, Fiction, Purpose, Reading

Living that Bookish Life

Someone asked me on Goodreads how I got into reading and writing, and I felt like blogging my answer.

So how did I get started in this bookish life, hmm? I’d say my parents are the guilty parties here. They both were readers.

My mom took me and my siblings down to the public library for books since we were quite little, and we had a family reading club for years. My dad would put up a new calendar in the kitchen each month where we’d write our initials down every time we finished a book, and a running total for each family member was at the bottom of the calendar.

Every time one of us kids finished ten books, we’d get some sort of little prize, but when it came down to it, it wasn’t about the prizes. Even when the reading club eventually phased out, we kept on reading. My uncle once joked that he’d never seen kids who were so excited to get books for Christmas!

As for my writing, if I had to pinpoint a time when I got started, it was when I was eight years old. I had to write a story for school, using specific spelling words, and my dad seemed to think the story was rather good. (He kept the story–still has it, in fact.)

I’ve been writing stories ever since. I just put book covers on them now. 🙂

 

____________________

 

Arts and Entertainment, Books, ebooks, Fiction, Reading

Take a Look: Christian Book Heaven

There’s a place to get curated ebook deals for Christian books:
Christian Book Heaven!
You can sign up to receive emails for free and discounted books and new releases. Visit the site to subscribe and pick your genres here.
(That’s a referral link, and, yes, I myself am a subscriber to Christian Book Heaven. 🙂 )

Website Logo Silver

 

 

Arts and Entertainment, Books, ebooks, Fiction, Reading

Clean Indie Reads Fall Sale 2016

falling-for-books-2016

Clean Indie Reads, the Home of Flinch-Free Fiction, is holding its annual fall sale
October 21st-23rd, 2016.

Find free and discounted books in a range of genres! Enter the sale here.

____________________

Love Unfeigned Banner

movement-trio-wheel-1