Saturday, 19 February 2011

A small tale of twitter

Yesterday, for complex domestic reasons, I found myself on a train to London with no book to read. Luckily I had a notebook, so didn't have to resort to running amok in the carriage for amusement, but I didn't want to face the journey home bookless. There wouldn't be much time as I was getting to King's Cross at 17:06 and had to be at the Coliseum at 17:30, but reckoned I could just about rush into Foyles at St Pancras and buy a book as long as I knew exactly what I was looking for and where to find it. I'd seen the trailer for Small Blue Thing linked from Nosy Crow's website and thought I'd read that, but couldn't remember who wrote it (sorry, Sue!). So I tweeted Kate at NosyCrow. I had these replies:

From @NosyCrow:
@annerooney Small Blue Thing written by S C Ransom (@scransom). Hope you find it.

From Foyles:
@annerooney S. C. Ransom - We've got stock in all our shops apart from One New Change.

From @scransom:
@annerooney Hi Anne, I hope @nosycrow got back to you in time! Small Blue Thing is my novel. I hope you managed to find it OK.

This is my original tweet:
@Nosycrow Who wrote small blue thing? want to buy in foyles but will have to dash in and out so need to know where to look

So twitter and websites/trailers sell books :-)



  1. I absolutely love the speed and interactivity of Twitter. I've often had great responses to queries as well. Glad to see it's working well in the book world :)

  2. Now if you'd had a Kindle in your bag, you could have looked up Small Blue Thing on it, bought it, and started reading immediately, thus cutting out the Twitter interaction, the delay and the dash to Foyles.

    No wonder readers love their Kindles.

  3. Thanks, Lexi. But personally I don't love reading fiction in electronic formats. I wanted a paper book. I use Kindle editions of some non-fiction texts but prefer to read novels on paper. I have an iPad on which I read Kindle editions, have had a Sony e-book reader, and read Kindle books on my phone sometimes so this is not being a Luddite - it's just a preference.

    And if I had bought the Kindle edition I would have been denied the delightful interaction with enthusiastic publisher, author and bookseller; the entire transaction would have been impersonal and only commercial. The involvement of the people connected with the book and their enthusiasm for it and for getting it to readers will impart an extra dimension to my reading.

  4. Good to know! I just wrote a blog post about reading addiction and the panic attack that ensues on transit when you realize you aren't carrying a book!