Friday, July 13, 2007

My name is Roger and I'm addicted to...

... googling myself. To be fair, it's not so much myself as my book titles that I go a-googling.

Why do I do it? Because I'm a vain, self-obsessed ego-monster desperate not to miss out on his fifteen minutes of cyber-fame, of course. I can justify it to myself - just about - on the grounds that I'm doing it for professional reasons. You know, checking up on the internet buzz. It's a gauge of something, surely, if A GENTLE AXE has been acquired by the Penang Club Library. Not sure quite what, though.

Also, I'm interested to know which reviews present themselves in what order at any given time to anyone who goes looking for me. I like it when the good ones come first. Perhaps I can even manipulate this by clicking on the good ones obsessively, and totally ignoring the - uh, how can I put it? - less enthusiastic ones, hoping thereby to consign them to the very outer circles of cyber-hell.

I get forwarded review links and quotes from my publicity people (sounds a bit grand that, doesn't it?) and I'm more than happy to share them with all you good folk. But I have to accept that Maggie (Penguin) and Anna (Faber) are simply not as obsessed with me (or my book) as I am. And frankly, they never will be. If I don't google me, no one will.

So I go hunting just to see if someone somewhere has mentioned my book. Of course, sometimes, I find stuff that I wish I hadn't. Like the South African journalist who accused me of all manner of crimes.

But sometimes, you stumble across something that is so unexpected, and pleasing, that it makes the long hours of joyless trawling seem worthwhile. One such discovery was this mention in the Journal of the Police Association of South Australia. Somehow the idea of all these Ozzie coppers rushing out to buy a copy of my book just tickles me pink. Bonza, as they say.


Nik's Blog said...

Bonza indeed. It's a great review.

And self-googling (there must be a better or, at least, wittier term for it than that) is an author's perogative. Virtual self research is a very important part of the responsible author's job.



crimeficreader said...

And sometimes you get here, Roger:

My thanks to you.

David Isaak said...

The Penang Club seems to have an impressive library. But, then, they can afford it, since the base fee for joining is $7,300 (or about 3,600 pounds, for those who meanure their money in weight terms).

Even if I had the stiff initiation fee, though, I wouldn't be able to sign up, as "A prospective member would need to be duly proposed and seconded by two Ordinary / Ordinary Transferable Members of the Club who must have at least [3] years standing of membership."

Counts me out.

Anonymous said...

Roger - I too am a self-googler. I confessed this to Will Atkins, who told me to set up a Google Alert (it sends you an email with a link every time you get mentioned in cyberspace)in order to free up more time for writing (his words, not mine!) This I did, and discovered that nobody was actually talking about me. So now I check the alert, and when it comes up blank, Google myself anyway. So far, the alert has not been wrong. Sigh.

The perils of vanity, huh?


Roger Morris said...

Thanks Nik, cfr, David and Aliya. Aliya, I have now set up a google alert thingy on your recommendation. I hope that it will help me get this habit under control.

Mary Ellen King said...

Hi Roger, Darryl Accone is a pompous ass, and obviously extremely jealous. See you on Zoetrope.

Mary Ellen King

Matt Curran said...

Hi Roger

I confess to doing the same (my hidden shame). It's easier to track reviews, but it's also a way of finding out news first.

For example, for the German version of The Secret War - I discovered the publishing date, title and cover design from a German bookshop, not Random House nor MNW.

There also appears to be many "Matt Currans" about, and Googling is like having a secret life. Aparently I'm like this great baseball player, and I sell guitars.

Oh, and there's this writer-guy as well.

Roger Morris said...

Thanks Mary Ellen! Definitely see you on Z for

Matt, glad I'm not alone. Congrats on the German edition. Wehn is it out?? Not that I can understand German.

Patti Auburn said...

Doesn't everyone google themselves? Maybe some just aren't honest enough to talk about it. I'm always checking if anyone visited my blog - I think I was better off before I got the counter thingy.

Got your book the other day and I'm taking it with me to Hawaii tomorrow for some good beach reading.

Take care!

Avril McLane said...

Dear Roger,

Hi my name is Avril and I too am addicted to vanity questing.