Andrew Solomon and “Little People”

Becky and me, back in the day

I’m pretty excited about this. Nine years ago Andrew Solomon, winner of the National Book Award, blurbed my book on dwarfism, “Little People.” He also interviewed me at the 2003 Little People of America conference for his next project — a book about families whose children were different from their parents, whether they be disabled, gay or suffering from mental illness, to name just a few examples.

That project — “Far From the Tree: Parents, Children, and the Search for Identity” — has just been published, and has been the object of rapturous reviews. The New York Times alone has published two raves (here and here) as well as a feature on Solomon and his own family. And it turns out that I made the cut, as he both quotes from our conversation and cites “Little People” in several spots.

Naturally, I’m trying to figure out how this might benefit “Little People.” Although it’s officially out of print, I sell a high-quality self-published paperback. (You can read about how that came about in a piece I wrote for Nieman Reports.) So far I’ve taken a few small steps: I’ve removed the free online edition (except for the Introduction and Chapter One) and made it easier to buy a copy. As you can see in the right-hand column, I’ve pumped up its presence on Media Nation. And I’m going to try Google ads again, at least through Christmas.

Anyone have any other ideas? Are there any independent bookstores in the area that would be interested in carrying it?

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6 thoughts on “Andrew Solomon and “Little People”

  1. BP Myers

    Congratulations, Dan. Confess I have no idea how to actually, you know, SELL books, but I do know they need to be made available to the various e-reader marketplaces. You should absolutely make it available on Kindle via Amazon’s KDP self-publishing mechanism, which isn’t all that hard and might make for an adventure. You can also make it available at the iBookstore via Apple’s tools, or publish to Smashwords and from there, gain access to not only the iBookstore, but Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Sony, etc. Strike while the iron’s hot! Good luck.

    1. Dan Kennedy Post author

      @BP: Thanks. Good advice, though I don’t think I’m going to be able to do the e-reader formatting right now. Hoping that offering a good quality paperback is sufficient.

  2. Jeff Schiffman

    Dan, how about adding live links in the sidebar here to the reads from the book you have left up, and to a quick order location, so they are always on view? Also, contacting the people from the Boston Book festival (or whatever it is called) about setting up, or participating in, a panel for next year’s big day might prove very productive. And here’s a link to a good list of many independent bookstores around the country: http://www.newpages.com/bookstores/

  3. Steve Stein (@SteveZStein)

    You might want to check out Closed Circle (a group of sci-fi/fantasy authors anchored by CJ Cherryh) as a model for self-publishing. They offer e-books and audiobooks as well as hard-copy books.

    As for independent bookstores, you might want to try Willow Books in Acton. In addition to being one of the only remaining independent bookstores in the area, they also host author appearances, especially for local authors.

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