January 25, 2006

Another Linky Lurve Day

LINKS FOR GOODNESS SAKE
Mir is taking a walk. <--go read that, and then you will know why I say, "Dude, you should throw money at her. No, not because she is making her G String into a little basketball goal. PERVOS. Because all the cool kids are doing it. And because it is a good thing and a right thing. Also tax deductable. HUZZAH!

LINKS FOR WORK:
The new trend is COMMERCIALS for books, kinda. Here are two, in two different formats. One is one is actual text from the book, read by the author and animated, and the other is more like an MTV music video that had a baby with a movie trailer. Very different approaches. Take a little LookSee, will you, Oh My Blessings? Both are pretty cool, but which approach do you like better and why for? I am THINKING on doing something along this line for my next book, since my brother is a professional artist slash computer animator...

MJ Rose's VidLit for The Delilah Complex

Anne Frasier's Trailer for Pale Immortal

NOTE: PLEASE DO NOT READ THE OTHER COMMENTS before commenting with your reactions!

I will follow up on this and tell you my opinions later I SWEARSIES---(and speaking of this, we are ONE STEP away from full Exotic Robot Sex Tea story time. One of two things that needed to happen before I could tell the story has happened.) I want to wait to tell you my complete opinion until after I hear your input. I will say this: While Southern Gothic is my favorite, I can't read southern when I am drafting---it screws with my voice. Lighter literary contemporary book club fare is my reading drug of choice, and by this I mean, given a stack with Life of Pi, Ulysses, Stranger in a Strange Land, and Tripwire in it, I am dern well going to read all of 'em. But. I will read Life of Pi first. Then Tripwire then Ulysses then Stranger.

AT LEAST one out of every two books I crack is contemporary literary/commercial fiction (with quite a lot of it being Southern if I am not drafting). AT LEAST one out of every five is some form of cop/lawyer/detective book, preferably of the Lee Child/Dennis Lehane school of manly gunplay. Over the course of a year, though, I do read VERY eclectically, settling down with at least a book or two in every genre but pR0n. SO, though one book is in a genre I read much more frequently then the other, I am a potential reader/target audience for both books/advertisements. If you watch them and respond, please say if YOU are the target audience for either or both, and how LIKELY you are to read in that genre, whether the vids make you want to choose this book in particular or not...

LINKS FOR FUNSIES
Alert Linker and fellow blogger DebR of B4B fame sent me THIS LITTLE GEM.

If you upload a picture of yourself, it matches you with celebrities who look MOST like you. Here is the picture I uploaded:

author_color_small.jpg

My results prove that yes, Virginia, digital imaging software CAN smoke crack:

josscelebresults.jpg

BRITNEY? Are you KIDDING ME? BRITNEY IS NOT EVEN MY CELEBRITY STYLE TWIN! MY CST IS NIC! *harrumph*

DebR's results are here, and may I say, I think some of HER twins look more like me than MY twins do. I've been told many times I am a bit Drew Barrymore-ish, but no one, alas, has ever accused me of looking like Kira Knightly. May I ALSO just say, I WISH I looked even a SPECK like my number one match, Milla. I think she is about one baby step from being Helen of Troy. She could launch at LEAST 983 ships. Ah well. It is FUN and terribly flattering to be told which supermodel you look MOST like, if not actually LIKE. It is just as true that I look more like Pluto than any of the OTHER planets, and more like a ball peen hammer than OTHER tool. And YET! When Pluto and a ball peen and I go get a peaceful drink together, we are never mistaken for sisters. If you follow me.

IF YOU PLAY, post a link to your MATCHES please. I wanna see.

Posted by joshilyn at January 25, 2006 9:21 AM
Comments

Thank you for my laugh of the morning! My number one match was Cameron Diaz. Ah-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha! Whew! That's a good one. I don't have a lovely blog/journal to post my original photo and the matches, but take my word for it when I tell you: I? Don't look like Cameron Diaz. Or Aishwariya Rai. Though lord, I wish I did.

PS - not allowed to watch streaming media at work (boo, big brother) but i'm interested to get home and watch the "book commercials". Sounds like a cool concept to me.

Posted by: MelissaC at January 25, 2006 10:02 AM

Gah, what did they DO to Emma Watson to make her look all adolescent and awkward? Remind me not to let these people take my picture.
If you look like Brittney Spears I will eat my desk. My entire desk. I am OFFENDED by the suggestion.
However, now that they mention it, you look EXACTLY like Audrey Hepburn.

Posted by: Kira at January 25, 2006 10:35 AM

You have now been accused of looking like Kiera Knightly...well, at least a little. I think the shape of your face - particularly your cheeks and jawline - are like hers. And the curve of your mouth is the same except that hers is wider.

About the book-o-mercials. From your description, I fully expected to like the first one better. Much to my surprise, despite an intensely annoying soundtrack, I preferred the bastard lovechild of an MTV video and a movie trailer.

In the first one, MJ Rose is reading the first few paragraphs of the book and the video part is sort of a changing cartoony collage. I think approach this *could* be effective, but I didn't think it was in this case.

For one thing, I'm not crazy about MJ's speaking voice (if you're reading this Ms. Rose, I'm sorry, but it's true...I like your writing though!!). I thought she sounded flat. And the illustrations were "enh", IMO. They were fine, but nothing too exciting.

I think for this approach to work you have to have exceptional illustrations and, most importantly, a totally KILLER first couple of paragraphs. They have to be the kind of thing that grab you by the throat and won't let go until you READ THE BOOK. This one, I must say, didn't do that to me. I wouldn't rush out to buy the book based on this book-o-mercial. (I *will* be reading that book, but it will be because I read and enjoyed "The Halo Effect".)

The bastard lovechild video-book-o-mercial, OTOH, gave me a feel for the book as a whole, not just the first couple of paragraphs. Or at least it gave me a feel for what I would *expect* the book to be. It felt edgy, tense, suspenseful, mysterious. I want to know what the heck is going on in that town in Wisconsin, dammit!! And I liked that I was reading the text, not having it read TO me. (I will, however admit to a strong prejudice against audio books, so take that as you will.)

I'll be looking for that book this fall.

Sorry this got so long, but I hope it's helpful.

Posted by: DebR at January 25, 2006 11:16 AM

Have to agree with DebR on everything she said regarding the VidLits. The MTV video/movie trailer was much more intriguing. When you have to read it yourself, you get more involved with the video whereas when it's being read to you, Eh, not so much. I completely checked out from the visual and had to watch the MJ Rose one twice b/c I ended up reading emails during the first playing of it. As soon as she started speaking, I turned my attention elsewhere and just listened. That being said... There's another on the VidLit site called "Fried Twinkies, Buckle Bunnies, and Bullriders" that was great and it had speaking parts. The difference - the visuals were all there (except for a couple of bits that were overly cartoonish).

Posted by: dragonfly at January 25, 2006 11:46 AM

Ok first the face thingie. Neither of only two celeb comparisons I've ever gotten (Cate Blanchet & Kristen Dunst) showed up. My top match was Hilary Swank, 64%, to which I can only say heck nooooooo!

Now, for the much more fun book-mericials! I couldn't watch the MJ Rose one you suggested, but I watch the Halo Effect instead. I much prefered the second one, which is odd because I would be more likely to read the Rose book. Rose's vidlit was very comic-booky, and I didn't feel like I got anything more from it than I would from reading the bookjacket. The second one focused on setting the tone. I found it more intriging. It felt more literary, and more like what I'd picture in my head while reading without taking away from how I would image it (no faces, just snippets and flashes.)

Posted by: Bonnie at January 25, 2006 12:18 PM

Argh, I had to go to my website to find a picture of me (one taken at work) because at home...and usually at work I am the one taking the picture. If it isn't a straight on picture...so the world is safe, I had no matches. When I was a nubile (okay I was never nubile) a teen (yes I was once younger) people said I looked like...1) Goldie Hawn (what have you been smoking) 2) Cher (it was that nose profile thing - but God she was hot) 3) Liza Minnelli (let me just slit my throat now.)

I couldn't get either of the trailers to play and I have dsl. I've no clue why, I'll try at work. But I have to agree with the comments regarding voice and self reading. I do voice work - duh I'm a dj - but a voice can make or break the whole senario. Unless it is James Earl Jones or Stockard Channing reading the blurb I'd go with a self read.

Posted by: Cele at January 25, 2006 12:48 PM

I got matched with people of all genders and races, but my favorite is that I am 50% Peter Ustinov.

Posted by: laura at January 25, 2006 1:02 PM

Neither of the vidlits loaded/ran. I remember back when MJ did her first vidlit and had a contest to count the books (or something) shown in the video. I could only download a short bit of it and thought it was because I had dial-up.
Now I have a great cable company and still the vidlits don't download.
I checked the comments and others were able to see them, so I don't know why I can't. Maybe I needed to click on something else, but there were no directions.
The problem I see is that I'm not very patient and I'm definitely not interested in trying to make technical things work. If I have to fiddle with things - well, I'm not going to. I won't put any effort into receiving an ad for anything, even books which are my passion. Normally I don't watch ads anyway - watching TV, I start to read when the ads come on and usually decide the book is more interesting than the program.
The vidlits remind me of my reaction to website/blogs with those awful dark, dark backgrounds which make it difficult to read. So I don't try.
There is not enough time to do all I want to do, so things either work well the first time, with no effort on my part, or I go away and forget about it.
I'm willing and have the patience to put a lot of work into my own writing, but when it comes to your writing....well, you do the work there and don't expect me to make much of an effort beyond buying your book. Your writing I only want to enjoy, Joshilyn and M.J.

All the above said with a smile ;)
Judith

Posted by: Judith McFerren at January 25, 2006 1:22 PM

Well, my highest match was Nana Mouskouri. Which really, really makes me feel good. But not as good as the fact that another of my matches was Donald Rumsfeld. Hel-LO???? Oh, and Rosanna Arquette, illustrated by picture in which she looked, frankly, like hell on a piece of toast.

I don't like this game. I don't want to play.

Posted by: Trudy at January 25, 2006 1:44 PM

Trudy! I had Nana Mouskouri, too! That takes away a bit of the Peter Ustinov sting.

Posted by: laura at January 25, 2006 2:03 PM

So, I tried this toy. I used a picture in which I had been all made up pretty to test the makeup FOR MY WEDDING. Choice number one it gives me: Anatoly Karpov. Choice number two: Maggie Smith, who I respect and she's very talented BUT SHE IS SEVENTY-ONE FOR HEAVEN'S SAKE.

Posted by: Laura at January 25, 2006 2:40 PM

For some reason it only gave me one match, and it was Katie Holmes. Which...no. Not even a little, at least *I* don't think so. I've been told that I look like Julianna Margulies and Amy Irving, but truly I think that has more to do with having curly hair than anything else.

Posted by: Aimee at January 25, 2006 2:59 PM

I channeled you today on my blog... Here I wrote a whole big long entry about voice and linked to something you said about voice way back when... and here you are, talking about it today.

As for the face matches, I uploaded a photo my friend took of me on book tour and came up with Joni Mitchell, Jennifer Capriati, Ayumi Hamasaki, Kjell Magne Bondevik (!) and Jennifer Aniston. Hmmm...

Posted by: Martha O'Connor at January 25, 2006 3:00 PM

Here's the blog entry that mentions your comments...
http://www.marthaoconnor.blogspot.com/

:o)

Posted by: Martha O'Connor at January 25, 2006 3:08 PM

WAH! I uploaded my picture and it said I looked like NO ONE. But it offered to let me pick my own... pfft.

Posted by: Heather Cook at January 25, 2006 3:37 PM

Ok, couldn't get the first trailer to do anything but sit there all black and silent. But the second one? Totally creeped me out! Really not sure I want to read that! And you know me, I'll read anything. Good concept, tho, as a promotional tool. But please no creepy music over graveyard shots. *shiver*

Upload a picture of myself? That's just way, way beyond my computing skillz. Alas. But I think you DO look like Emma Watson! All grown up like! And she's cute as a button! So good on ya. ;)

Posted by: Amy-GO at January 25, 2006 3:53 PM

I love the vidlit stuff. I like both styles and think either could work with your book. I am no help, eh?

Also, you got Kiera Knightly as one of yoru celeb look alikes. *drools*

Posted by: Heather at January 25, 2006 4:55 PM

*cries* I must try another picture of me!

http://www.myheritage.com/FP/Company/faceRecognitionFlash.php?s=1&u=g0&lang=EN&temp=625f7d34hns7c503&server=Server9&database=1&startYear=1800&endYear=2005

Posted by: Heather at January 25, 2006 5:08 PM

Ok. NOW I am a happy gurl!

http://www.myheritage.com/FP/Company/faceRecognitionFlash.php?s=1&u=g0&lang=EN&temp=d75f7d34mcgsnq03&server=Server9&database=1&startYear=1800&endYear=2005

Posted by: Heather at January 25, 2006 5:09 PM

I uploaded the pic of me at the Mercer Booksigning (so you know what I looked like) and these were my matches:
Cate Blanchette 51%
Lindsey Lohan 44%
Alyson Hannigan 43%
Helena Bonham Carter 42% <----this is all I need, ever. I love this gal.

Posted by: Tina at January 25, 2006 6:22 PM

I have a nearly overwhelming preference for the "author speaking to Flash animation" vidlette as opposed to the MTV/movie preview thing.

As a reader, I don't really want someone else to visualize a book for me, I don't even want a tiny bit of help. I do, however, like to hear authors talking about their books. I appreciate lively animations, as long as they do not too literally try and present scenes from the book, but instead stick to presenting the theme or give me an overall sense of the book.

However, based on how often my very favorite TV shows are cancelled I suspect you can probably best optimize your financial results by doing the exact opposite of whatever I suggest.

Posted by: Mary at January 25, 2006 8:53 PM

I couldn't get the MJ Rose one to work, but I did watch the other one and I am inclined to buy that one (If I remember about it all the way in Sept 2006!) I would have to say I'm in the intended audience.

After trying 3 different photos, I finally got one celeb match: Kirsten Dunst.

Posted by: Laura at January 25, 2006 9:12 PM

I'm 66% Kirsten Dunst, whom my husband thinks is one of the ugliest actresses out there. He says she has nasty teeth. But as for the other matches- 65% Winona Ryder, 65% Olivia Newton-John, 64% Ava Gardner, 64% Ewan McGregor (the Celt in me coming out). I think I see how they formulate it as my cheeks are full, my eyes are big, my upper lip is thinish, my bottom lip is fat, and my nose is bulby. Too bad Megan Follows isn't listed as I'm a dead ringer for her and Anne of Green Gables. I'll provide a pic when blogger is back up.

Posted by: Sabra Wineteer at January 26, 2006 10:20 AM

Here's my pics and a few other celebs I resemble. I'm only going to have it up until tomorrow afternoon.

http://thebleckingblog.blogspot.com/

Posted by: Sabra Wineteer at January 26, 2006 4:03 PM

I was only able to watch the "Pale Immortal" video since my browser does not seem to be on speaking terms with the Flash plug-in.

PI looks like a very scary, spooky, noir novel. Many apologies to Anne, but I can't handle scary novels so I probably wouldn't read it. The arm draped over the bathtub with the swinging door, the quotes from the text, and the map with the disappearing name were the best parts. The entire video was a little too long, but doing music videos for novels is a brilliant idea. Thanks for letting us in on this hot new trend!

Posted by: Elizabeth at January 26, 2006 8:29 PM

That was fun! LOL, I didn't have a very good pic to upload, but ended up with Barbara Streisand! http://www.myheritage.com/FP/Company/faceRecognitionFlash.php?s=1&u=g0&lang=EN&database=1&temp=792cdd34p9bnkm01&server=Server7&startYear=1800&endYear=2005

I'm a newbie fan of yours! Just finished reading Gods in Alabama and LOVED it! I can't wait to read Between, Georgia (I live right ouside of Between in Monroe, technically the Between area!!

Posted by: Tanya at January 29, 2006 9:06 PM