Some blog to book deals have come together rapidly, but probably none so quickly as Wife in the North. Judith O’Reilly created her blog to chrnoicle the adventures and frustrations of her life after having relocated from London to the Northumberland countryside. Her husband wanted their children to grow in a country setting far from the problems of the big city. She had previously worked as an educational correspondent. She began her blog in January 2007 and within 8 weeks she inked a book deal from Viking Penguin valued at about $140,000. How did this novice blogger do it so quickly? To find out, you must follow the links.
The TimesOnline chrnoicled the step-by-step process that led Judith to her book deal.
- Judith O’Reilly started her blog in January 2007. (presumed Technorati authority: 0; current authority: 188)
- Her blog was mentioned on the website of Tom Watson, an MP and a regular blogger, whom she had contacted to get advice. (Technorati authority: 187)
- The next day Iain Dale, the political commentator and another prolific blogger, linked Wife in the North on his site. (Technorati authority: 1,006)
- That in turn led Andrew Sullivan, the American writer and Sunday Times columnist, to note its quality. His US readers soon began visiting the site in large numbers. (Technorati authority: 4,202)
- Within days Patrick Walsh, a British literary agent and publisher, had seen the potential and began working on a deal.
She summarized the experience in a post on her blog entitled Blog to Book in 60 Seconds:
I blogged. Someone read it. Someone else read it. Someone else passed it on. The political bloggers linked to me and the world went mad. I blogged some more. Someone read it. Someone liked it. Someone passed it on. A publisher e-mailed me. A book was mentioned. Money was mentioned. I tucked my skirt into my knickers , said “Ok then” and looked for hidden cameras.
The lesson here, is that it helps to get links from friends with high authority. If the Guiness Book of Records were to track such things, Judith O’Reilly would no doubt hold title to the world’s fastest blog to book transit. Would be challengers take note: The secret to your success may lie in tapping the power laws that shape web geography.