Read it or lose it! A Disappearing Anthology June 27, 2012 – Tags: , , ,

“Books are very patient objects. We buy them, and then they wait for us to read them. Days, months, even years. That’s OK for books, but not for new authors. If people don’t read their first books. They’ll never make it to a second.”
Here’s the problem:

Physical books are not the only ones that are in danger these days. New Latin American authors are threatened as well. In the last 20 years the book sales from new Latin-American writers have decreased by a total of 37%. These new authors, unlike the established and famous ones, suffer every second that their books are left on a shelf. They not only need to be sold, but also need to be read. Word of mouth is crucial to building a writer’s career, so they can make it to a second book.

 So, how does one get people interested in reading new authors?
Why not create a book that will disappear!
“The Book That Can’t Wait” is an anthology of recent Latin American writing that was published by Eterna Cadencia, an independent publisher and bookstore in Buenos Aires.  Each book comes with an expiration date and once removed from the packaging has a shelf-life of two months before the specially designed ink begins to disappear.

The buzz was big enough that the whole first edition was spoken for on publication day.

Now what? The publisher plans to release other neglected or under-read work in a similar format.

Gimmick or marketing genius?

Granted, the publisher says that they would have had to spend a million pesos to generate the same amount of attention for their authors using traditional advertising channels but what if the campaign promoted well-made books that are guaranteed to last hundreds of years if cared for?

I would prefer to spend a lifetime with a book I enjoyed then watch it disappear after a couple of months.

Eterna Cadencia was mistakenly placed in Hondorus in the original post. Apologies.

« A bookmark on the loose
Cooking up the future in the ‘Library Test Kitchen’ »