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Be An Bestseller
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Mary and I are revising Six For Gold. We've reentered the book and are traveling across territory we thought we knew well but which turns out to be completely alien. How this bodes for blogging, I can't say.

At the end of the journey we hope to have a good mystery novel. We don't hope to have a bestseller. That's not only a matter of realism, it's also not what writing's about.

A few days ago Lee Goldberg wrote he'd received that spam we've probably all had, promising to make us bestsellers. He mentions their come on:

"Just think…for the rest of your life, people will hear the phrase 'bestselling author' whenever you’re being introduced."

Sadly, as Lee points out: "You become a bestselling author by writing great books -- not by writing checks."

On the other hand, if you're truly desperate you can play with the bestseller lists and "advanced search" features. Not on the mystery/thriller bestseller list? How about the historical mystery list? Checking every week when Five for Silver appeared I once found us, temporarily, all the way up to 25!

The advanced search by subject matter, sorted by bestseller status, is much more gratifying to the ego, however. Not near the top in mysteries? How about historical mysteries published in hardcover in 2004? If you're creative you can become an even bigger bestseller. How are we doing among Byzantine Empire books, or ones about Justinian? Heck, one time we had something like 3 of the top 4, hardcover books, in the subject category Istanbul, for the year, sorted by bestseller status. Talk about bestsellers! We were the Beatles of Istanbul!

Now that we're bestsellers we have to get back to trying write a decent book.

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