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The Month In Statistics

01 November 2008

Website hits up 73%
Book sales up 5.3%

There’s probably an algorithm somewhere linking website hits to sales, created by an American wearing a Seahawks sweatshirt and working for Microsoft, but I’m not going to look for it. Due to these figures, there are obviously rumours starting to circulate about Long Midnight Publishing making an audacious takeover bid for HarperCollins, but to be honest, at this stage it doesn’t look likely. Not until we’ve tied up the merger with Baskin Robbins.

Read this interesting quote on-line about why at times of global financial meltdown, the last two remaining profitable sectors are the big oil companies and publishers of crime novels. According to Professor Stanley Rowbotham of the Highland Institute of Criminology, “The big oil companies will always succeed because they are greedy, planet-raping, profit-lust, pond-dwelling slime. I don’t know why people buy crime novels.”

All that waiting I was intending to do for the proof copy of the cover of The Long Midnight of Barney Thomson, all the plans I’d made, the elaborate schemes I’d invented to allow family life to go on around me as I sat with my nose pressed against the window, were all thwarted yesterday when the cover turned up unexpectedly early.

It looked good. Given that they are reprinting from a pdf I sent them, it ought to look exactly the same, but they obviously have to go through the formality to save the possibility of recriminations and litigious action. This copy of the cover is called the sherpa proof. I don’t know why it’s called the sherpa proof, and I’m not about to find out either. I like not knowing. I like believing it’s because in the old days, when people were publishing books up mountains, various parts of the process were delivered by hand.

I probably ought to come up with more statistics for The Month In Statisitcs. Today's the day to start counting for November. I'm going to sit and not do anything until I've worked out what it is I need to enumerate.

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