This article sheds some light on one author's attempt to leverage Facebook as he launches his upcoming novel. OK, so it only involved about 200 of his Facebook friends, but still, it's great to see authors experimenting like this. Thanks to all the new applications being written for it, Facebook is a very powerful and extensible platform; within the next 2-3 years I bet we'll see a lot more of this and on a much grander scale (e.g., with more bells and whistles, offering richer content, attracting many more readers and evolving into a true community discussion/collaboration area).
That's not all this article has to offer, though. Here are a couple of other interesting items that caught my eye:
- That Million Penguins project ended rather uneventfully. If anything, a project like this can only give wikis everywhere a bad name. Come on...it makes the "million monkeys with a million typewriters" theory sound practical. What were the chances that the world was going to come together and write a novel via wiki? Reference works and tutorials, sure, but a novel?!
- I hadn't heard of this Inside Facebook ebook prior to reading this article. I've been working on my own Facebook presence and could use some pointers. I like the way the author is promoting it, but he should really rethink the 12-page excerpt he's offering as a teaser -- it's mostly frontmatter and doesn't get into the real book till there's only about 3 pages left in the sampler. So here's my free self-publishing tip of the day: If you're going to offer a free excerpt from your book, make sure it's from a meaty chapter. Don't be afraid to give away a tip or two; it only shows you know your stuff and that readers can expect even more great insight when they buy the entire book.