the contextual life

thoughts without borders

Where Musicians and Writers Collide: Publicity

with 5 comments

As someone who went to school for Music Business and who now works in book publishing, I often see the parallels between musicians and authors. It always surprised me when I first started my job search and the interviewer would ask, “Music Business? Why do you want to get into book publishing?” For me it was an easy leap, whether you’re working with a musician or a writer, it’s artist representation.

So, when I heard from John Anealio, co-host of the Functional Nerds podcast, that he wanted to have me on the show alongside a music marketing strategist, I was excited he made the connection as well.

The other guest on the show, Brian Thompson, is a “Vancouver based music industry entrepreneur, record label owner, artist manager, marketing consultant, digital strategist, brand architect, web designer, blogger, podcaster and industry speaker.” He’s one of the co-founders of Thorny Bleeder Records, “an artist development collective” that helps bands “establish and grow their profile and fan base, both domestically and internationally.”

Since being on the show with him, I’ve signed up for his email newsletter, The DIY Daily, a “daily newsletter delivering marketing advice, music industry news, social media tips & tools, tech, apps & gadgets, inspirational & motivational thoughts and much more.” Everyday, waiting for me in my inbox, are 20 great links about how artists of all kinds can use social media effectively. More than most apply to the publishing industry and are links I can forward along to my authors.

On The DIY Daily website, you’ll find a daily podcast offering a variety of marketing tips in under 20 minutes, an in-depth weekly podcast about the music business, daily quotes, and the aforementioned link roundup if you prefer to not to receive them by email.

On the show, Brian, John, Patrick and I discussed the benefits of email lists, social media, and how artists should treat themselves as a business.

You can listen to the episode here.

If you have any questions, check back on the Functional Nerds site next week. Book Publicist Jaym Gates and I will be collecting questions for a future online round table.

On the Shelf

Booklife: Strategies and Survival Tips for the 21st Century Writer by Jeff VanderMeer
Best known as the author of many science fiction and fantasy novels, as well as the editor of many genre anthologies, in Booklife, Jeff VanderMeer offers “timely advice in an era when the burden of production and publicity frequently falls on authors.” Booklife is an “essential reference [that] reflects on methods for being focused, productive, and savvy in the craft of writing.
Discussing a wide range of essential topics for self-promoting authors, this important guide explores questions such as How can authors use social media and the internet? How does the new online paradigm affect authors, readers, and the book industry? How can authors find the time to both create and promote their work? and What should never be done? Through good-humored encouragement, practical tips of the trade culled from 25 years of experience as a writer, reviewer, editor, publisher, agent, and blogger are shared. Including topics such as personal space versus public space, deadlines, and networking, the benefits of interacting with readers through new technologies is revealed.” [via IndieBound]


Written by Gabrielle

February 16, 2012 at 7:07 am

5 Responses

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  1. I see the connections between the two “realms” of artistry as well, although I’ve also had trouble getting others to see them. For me, I begin with all I know as an author and publisher and editor and then try to make the leap to the possibilities in the music world. One thing the music world is several leaps ahead on has to do with the freedom to “do it on your own.” In fact, it’s seen as courageous. In the publishing world it’s still very much associated with amateurism and definitely lower-tier. On the other hand, the music world is very much struggling with the issues of piracy and such that the publishing world is trying to avoid, and may be succeeding?


    February 16, 2012 at 10:22 am

    • Wow. I never thought of the indie musician vs. self-published author comparison before. That is so true. I wish there were more posts comparing the music industry vs. publishing regarding piracy. I’ve read a few but nothing definitive yet.


      February 16, 2012 at 11:20 am

  2. […] Gabrielle Gantz on the overlap of music and book publicity. […]

    • This is very true. That’s why the site I write for actually does interviews with both indie authors and indie musicians ( if interested). I think that’s sort of where the entertainment industry is headed. The variety and interest is so much wider with indies than with the big industries, plus there is something amazing about seeing a regular person with extraordinary talent. I think that’s also why Current TV has appeal. It’s less stiff and more interesting on a personal level.

      JC Finch

      February 16, 2012 at 5:31 pm

  3. It is not strange at all… something called “Fanzines” have been doing it for years…


    February 27, 2012 at 4:10 pm

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