Sunday, September 27, 2009

12,000 Copies Nationwide

Excuse me, but have you written a cult book would not have been a great opening line to use with author William Hammett. Instead, I told him that I really liked John Lennon and the Mercy Street Cafe and asked him to tell me a bit about himself. I also asked if I could record our conversation, and he had no objections.

He said he’d worked for people associated with The Simpsons, Saturday Night Live, a CBS sitcom, a Sci-Fi series, as well as professional athletes, politicians, and people from all walks of life. His latest client, a publicist with a major New York publishing house, had just bagged an A-list agent for a true crime book. I already knew most of this from consulting his websites.

I took a deep breath. “You’re obviously successful. How come you don’t pack in the ghostwriting and just publish under your own name?”

“Many of my clients have clout,” he replied. “And the average title, even from major houses, only sells an average of twelve thousand copies nationwide. Only a very few authors give up the day job. I’m lucky. I pay the bills from my writing. However . . . "


“I've been thinking about doing more fiction under my own name. I’ve learned a lot about marketing from my successful clients.”

“Care to share the wealth?” I asked.

“Got a couple of hours?”

I was no Woodward or Bernstein, feeling victorious in finally getting a source to open up about the Watergate burglary, but if Hammett wanted to talk of marketing, I was finally going to be able to broach the subject of cult fiction. We scheduled more interviews.


About This Website
Index of Articles on This Website
What Is Cult Fiction?
Is Cult Fiction the Same as Underground Fiction?
Cult Fiction and Genre
Cult Fiction and ON THE ROAD
Moby-Dick: The Ultimate Cult Novel
John Lennon and the Mercy Street Cafe: Cult Fiction in the Making?
The Next Wave of Cult Fiction
List of Cult Fiction Classics
Cult Fiction Websites
Current Trends in Fiction
Literary Fiction
Breakout Fiction
Literary Agents
Self-Published Novels
Understanding the Literary Marketplace
Emerging Writers in the Literary Marketplace
Resources for Writers
About Cat Spaulding