Wednesday, April 16, 2008
ESPN's Kenny Mayne has a new book out with a very long title and he's going through all avenues to make sure you hear about it. The book is exactly what you think it would be. Kind of loopy, funny in parts, and whips through just about every single Sport you can think of (Wiffle Ball anyone?). And while I'd recommend the book to anyone who enjoys Mayne's work and the lighter side of Sports, I'd rather take a look at one key medium that Kenny and his publishers are targeting. Blogs.
Mayne has already had interviews posted on Deadspin, Fanhouse, and With Leather (who I'd link but the site is mysteriously down) and it wasn't that long ago that I got the following email via his publisher....
Dear Blogger Person:Free stuff is definitely a perk of this "job", so I of course took him/them up on the offer. The book came a day later and even included a Kenny Mayne autographed Baseball Card!
I have written a book. It has a hard cover and can be used as a coaster.
It also has words and pictures and illustrations and everything you'd ever want in a book, including page numbers.
The title leads some to believe it is about sports but you're smarter than that. The key chapter is about how Starbucks keeps charging me too much for my Americanos.
Please read for yourself and blog and blog and blog some more.
If you’d like a free copy, just reply to this email with your mailing address.
The only reason I bring this up (it's not to review the book because the above sites did that better than I could), but to note how genius of an idea this was. Do you know how much free press he got from sending a free book to and interviewing with those sites above alone? Millions and millions of views. Here's the real point I'm trying to make. Blogs are so easy to impress these days that it's just stupid to try and fight them.
Take Rick Reilly and Mark Cuban. Reilly is preparing for TV work on ESPN and he's most certainly going to be hammered by this site and others as soon as he's on-air. Cuban lost a ton of respect with the younger generation for not understanding a growing medium in the Sports world. Both of those individuals and Kenny Mayne have shticks that they portray in public (hell everyone does), but only Mayne's is one that I can enjoy. Reilly and Cuban's acts just seem old at this point.
This might partly be because he sent me a free book, but it's more so because he doesn't take himself nearly as seriously as the other two. Hell even if I hated the book it's still free press.
An Incomplete and Inaccurate History of Sport: . . . and Other Random Thoughts from Childhood to Fatherhood (Amazon.com)