Whatcha Gonna Do with That Duck?: And Other Provocations, 2006-2012 by Seth Godin
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Buku ini merupakan kumpulan posting blog Seth Godin selama enam tahun, dari 2006 - 2012.
Karena ada ratusan posting yang semuanya menarik (bagaimana lagi, aku penggemar tulisan Seth Godin soalnya), susah membuat reviewnya. Intip saja blognya di sethgodin.typepad.com ya.
Di sini aku cuma mau sharing salah satu posting yang tema bahasannya kerap kita pertanyakan, dalam kapasitas kita sebagai pembaca slash pembeli buku.
Strangers and Friends: Understanding Publishing
The bookstore and the publisher keep more than 85% of what a reader pays for a book.
And that money us well earned. Why? Because book publishing is the act of taking a financial risk to bring an idea to an unknown reader.
The key word is "unknown". Before the book is purchased, neither the bookstore nor the publisher knows the identity of the reader.
This is fundamentally different from the core readership of a magazine or a newspaper (they have subscribers).
Reaching strangers is a risky business. Penguin is left with $40 million in debt from Borders as they go bankrupt. Penguin had to advance them money because otherwise, no bookstore would be able to take the risk of having all those books standing by, just hoping that the right stranger would find the right book on the right day.
Authors, then, have a choice. They can give up more and more freedom and cash to publishers in exchange for publishers' taking the risk of finding, alerting, and selling to strangers, or they can start to organize a tribe, to build permission, to engage with readers before the book exists, and to sell those friends on their work.
Selling to friends (people who know you, trust you, are aware of what you can offer) is orders of magnitude more efficient than seeking out strangers. Sure, it's time consuming and frightening to earn those friendships, but they are the transformative element of the new publishing.
Once you have a base of friends, then, publishing is reduced to a much simpler set of tasks--the hard work of editing, designing, printing, and fulfilling. Hard, but not financially difficult. Not just that, but the speed, freedom, and control will transform the way you write as well as how you engage with your audience.
It's very seductive for an author to believe that a fairy godmother will introduce her fabulous idea to legions of strangers. Seductive, yes, but rarely something that actually happens.
[There are dozens of businesses that, like book publishing, focus on strangers. What happens to your business when you switch gears and focus on your friends instead?]
Selain topik di atas, di sesi The Future Is Arriving, Godin membahas banyak hal tentang perbukuan. Well, wajarlah karena ia juga seorang penulis.
Perbandingan antara buku fisik dan ebook misalnya. They're different products for different readers. Buku fisik terutama yang hardcover fungsinya memang bukan cuma dibaca seperti ebook, tapi juga sebagai bagian dari interior-decorating stuffs. Keren buat dipajang di lemari ;))
Banyak bahasan tentang buku, membaca, masa depan penerbitan/toko buku dan lain-lain yang enak untuk dibaca dan direnungkan. Tapi baca buku ini bikin pegal. Hardcover setebal 590 halaman soalnya. Dan iya... buku ini pasti berakhir jadi bagian dari pajangan untuk interior kamar tidurku di Cirebon...
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