Here’s the WSJ‘s (sub req’d) rundown of notable numbers for Random House’s upcoming Eldest, the second in Christopher Paolini’s YA fantasy trilogy: the publicity budget is $500,000; the print run is one million (John Irving’s Until I Find You: 350,000); Paolini is 21 (Irving’s age minus 42); and Eragon, the first in Paolini’s series, already has two million-plus hardcovers and paperbacks in print in the U.S.
The remainder of the article credits “the online community” for much of Eragon‘s success: “Fansites and message boards built tremendous word-of-mouth, effectively establishing Eragon as a book that many teens and young adults felt they had to read.” If that’s true, though, it pushes some of Random House’s self-congratulations into the realm of parody. From the article’s last graf:
All of the marketing and advertising for “Eldest” has been produced in-house. “We didn’t feel we needed the expertise of Madison Avenue,” [marketing VP Daisy] Kline says. “You have to think out of the box.”
Right, then. It just so happens that they’re thinking so far outside their box, it’s no longer their thinking.