The First Ads for Famous Books

Because even genius needs share of voice to succeed.

In Read Me: A Century of Classic American Book Advertisements (public library), New York Times book critic Dwight Garner offers “a visual survey of book advertisements, plucked from yellowing newspapers, journals and magazines large and small, from across the United States during the twentieth century” — more than 300 of them, to be precise, including some of modern history’s most beloved literary classics by favorite authors like Susan Sontag, Kurt Vonnegut, Joan Didion, Anas Nin, and Ray Bradbury. What emerges is a curious alternative history of literature and its parallel evolution alongside twentieth-century communication arts and advertising. But, perhaps most importantly, it serves as a necessary antidote to the genius myth, demonstrating that icons are very much made, not merely celebrated for their “God”-given talent.

Seth’s Blog: The last hardcover

Today the Domino Project is publishing Sarah Kay’s new book. It’s a short poem, a great gift and a book I’m proud to publish by an author on her way to big things. I hope you’ll take a look.

Almost exactly a year after we started, Sarah’s book is the last print book we’ll be launching. Twelve books, twelve bestsellers, published in many languages around the world.

I’ve posted a history of what we built, along with some of what we learned along the way.

By most of the measures I set out at the beginning, the project has been a success. So why stop? Mostly because it was a project, not a lifelong commitment to being a publisher of books. Projects are fun to start, but part of the deal is that they don’t last forever.