Saturday, January 01, 2005

2. Data [Variety=Raw; Grade=Low]

The best I can offer by way of summarizing any piece of 2004, I'm afraid, on this first day of 2005, is a pitiful batch of numerals--blog-stats [drumroll, please] that report the results of a Visitor Survey I posted here at BOOKANGST 101 a couple of months ago. I was curious: who the heck reads this thing? --who, brothers and sisters, are you? So I asked, and you answered, and the data has been milled. Statistical analysis is a subject of great personal interest, and (as usual) my lack of expertise will not dissuade me from drawing a few fascinating conclusions. (Did I need to see the FOCKERS movie to render a reasonably astute judgment? I rest my case.)

Brothers and sisters, the raw data. You identified yourselves as follows:
26%....."Author--book(s) published or under contract"
17%....."Writer/Reviewer published in newspapers/magazines"
17%....."As-yet unpublished writer"
07%....."Media Reporter/Blogger"
10%....."Publishing: Editorial"
02%....."Publishing: Ed-in-Chief/Assoc Publisher/Publisher"
07%....."Publishing: Publicity/Marketing/Sales"
03%....."Literary Agent"
08%....."Other/Just Curious"

OK, kids--let's get out our calculators.
A VOCATION OF UNHAPPINESS [Courtesy Georges Simenon (1903-1985)]

"Writing is considered a profession, and I don't think it is a profession. I think that everyone who does not need to be a writer, who thinks he can do something else, ought to do something else. Writing is not a profession but a vocation of unhappiness. I don't think an artist can ever be happy."

PRACTICAL MARKETING [Courtesy Zornhau, 2005]

"They should put the 1st couple of pages up in subway adverts. Having read them several times, you'd feel compelled to try the book - if it was any good."

PLATE OF SHRIMP [Courtesy Alex Cox’s REPO MAN, circa 1984]

"A lot of people don't realize what's really going on. They view life as a bunch of unconnected incidences and things. They don't realize that there's this like lattice of coincidence that lays on top of everything. I'll give you an example, show you what I mean. Suppose you're thinking about a plate of shrimp. Suddenly somebody will say like "plate" or "shrimp" or "plate of shrimp" out of the blue, no explanation. No point in looking for one either. It's all part of a cosmic unconsciousness."