Archive for the ‘fun’ Category

Wednesday, October 22nd, 2008


Internet Librarian ended up worth it. There weren’t that many people, but our booth was mobbed even so. Some came for the free LibraryThing t-shirts (being secretly given out, but word got out), free CueCats barcode scanners or the free laptop stickers. Most came to see LibraryThing for Libraries and our new reviews feature. To my great surprise, people got the Facebook application.

But what do you do when the conference is winding down for the day, and no customers are around. First, you run around with a rhino, attacking other exhibitors. Then you settle down to a nice game of rhino-catch!

Many apologies to the esteemed Christa Burns, whose presentation was affected by rhinos–mostly wondering what the heck was going on.

Next party or conference, we’re going to organize a formal game of rhino sports. I think it’d be particularly fun to half-fill the rhino with water—a full rhino would be immovable—and see whom it burst upon.

Labels: fun, il2008, internet librarians, rhinos

Saturday, December 15th, 2007

Headless body in topless bar*

I love book covers; I designed one of my wife‘s—not the best, but it broke a long publisher/author stalemate—and marveled as the rest went by. Cover design is a dark art. The right cover is crucial to the success of a novel, but designers can’t afford to spend too much time or money on them, and seek safety in herds.

Book Cannibal has a funny piece on The Mystery of the Decapitated Cover Models, “There are certain trends in publishing that baffle me. … [W]hat’s with all these covers that feature half of some girl’s face?” They start with the Gossip Girl books, but they’re everywhere, including LibraryThing author Elizabeth Bear‘s novels.

Book Cannibal wonders about the phenomenon, providing one good explanations, via her editor:

“The editor explained that B&N wants covers with live models (as opposed to scenery, or abstract painting, or an icon). Sometimes, the models aren’t quite the right age (I’m guessing this is the case re: Gossip Girls), but if you cut off part of their face, voila! Youth. You can slice away the years.”

Readers provide some others. I’m minded to look a few years back, when feet and shoes were all the rage, as Trashionista reminds us (see also GalleyCat’s dissection). First it was just feet, now we’re up to the jaw. This is progress, I suppose.

Anyway, I spent an enjoyable hour surfing book covers. This ended in 20 minutes of uncontrollable laughting at Smart Bitches Who Love Trashy Books, including this cover, with the nice observation “Why is the executive wearing a prep school jacket?”

*Famous New York Post headline, also the title of a book subtitled “The Best Headlines from Americas Favorite Newspaper.”

Labels: book covers, fun