Novel Idea
The book industry has its first bona-fide Web phenomenon. Will the music industry be next?
By Glenn McDonald, December 1999 Issue – Business 2.0

When author M.J. Rose found no buyers among traditional publishers for her first novel, Lip Service, she turned to the Internet. In a very smart way.

In 1996, Rose — whose real name is Melisse Shapiro — began shopping around her manuscript. But Lip Service had a problem, Shapiro says. Editors liked the story, but the marketing departments of the various publishers she approached could not figure out what to do with it.

“It’s a thriller and it’s a love story,” Shapiro says. “But it’s also erotic and a little bit — oh, I don’t know — intelligent. It’s not a genre book, and that’s a big problem these days with markets being so pigeon-holed.” Read the rest of this entry »