A HarperCollins trifecta (and some change)

Eoin Purcell

While their websites disappoint
HarperCollins deliver three solid blogs that I have been aware of for a little while, each nicely focused and two of them driven by excellent content.

The Fifth Estate blog is by far the most active as far as I can tell and is one I have been aware of for a while (though I need to add it to the Publisher’s Blogs link section). As an example of its output this post seems as good as any:

What sets Glastonbury apart from other music festivals? Apart from the size it has a variety of political and social messages to listen to, with this in mind I ventured to the Left Field and the Socialist Bookshop…

The Olive Reader is a smart little blog that functions as Harper Perennial’s blog. It has a rather cool feature on it’s about page, the desks of the contributors minus the actual contributor, here. Also in a fancy pants feature they have an Olive TV link too which drops you straight into their YouTube channel. Sweet.

Authonomy is the beta online slush pile system. It has been quiet for a while but in the last little bit it has kicked into overdrive. Today for instance they launched the key features of that community, The Editors

In my review I stumbled onto more blogs run by Harper imprints, some from the UK, some the us and some from Australia. There is a poetry blog, an Eos blog and a Voyager blog. All are worth enjoying.

The assessment
Overall HarperCollins seem to be on top of blogs. If it can be done they seem to be doing it. The links to video clips are nice, the blogs are engaging and not purely pumping pr at readers. Authonomy seems to be getting to grips with its role in the fledgling community too.

I have to admit I have always thought of Harper as a little slower off the mark than other publishers but you would have to reassess that image based on their blog efforts to date.

Impressed,
Eoin

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3 comments

  1. It’s lovely to hear what you have to say about the Harper blogs – and a relief to know we’re being noticed. I think one of the nicest things about the blogs is that they can be alot more informal than the ‘official’ website – and more open to easy updates without having to run everything through red tape and so on. The Voyager Australia blog (which I run) only kicked off properly in March this year so we’re always looking to improve – and I enjoyed your suggestions on how to maintain a good publishing blog.
    Natalie

  2. Eoin — its very good of you to be doing this for the community. I assume that you are going to cover a few more publisher efforts. Will the Bookseller commission a feature from you on it? At the very least…. perhaps you and your blog reviews should become a branch line of the Nibbies. Industry recognition for Purcell is needed!

  3. Adam,

    The praise is hardly warranted but I welcome it all the same! I am thinking of ways of doing some kind of survey of smaller blogs and I’ve had a few thoughts about it too.

    Natalie,

    I think you have hit the sweet spot of blogs there alright! Especially when a team is given freedom to express themselves within the context of a blog.

    As Seth Godin might say it build permission for you and gets you attention. Which makes selling your books easier.

    Eoin

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