Vampires, Zombies, and Enhanced eBooks: Seth Grahame-Smith on Mashup Publishing

By Jason Boog Comment

sgs.jpgNovelist Seth Grahame-Smith watched his entire life change last year when he wrote the bestselling monster mash-up Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. Today on the Morning Media Menu, he talked about his new book and the mashup trend he helped create.

During the interview, he discussed his new book (Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter), the new MTV show he helped create, and the process of writing the screenplay for a Tim Burton-produced adaptation of the Lincoln mashup.

Press play on the embedded player below to listen or follow this link.

Here’s an excerpt: “Now the marketplace is flooded with mashups. I won’t name names, but if you go on Amazon and look at all the new mashups that are coming out, you can see that a lot of them are scraping the barrel. It’s seems like people are almost arbitrarily picking books out of hats. The other thing I would say is that if they are done well, almost respectfully–if you’re trying very hard to adhere to the themes and the style that you’re mashing-up–they do bring people into the tent.”

Grahame-Smith continued: “Everywhere I go hundreds of people have come up to me at signings and events and said, ‘I never, in my life, would have picked up a book by Jane Austen, but I was actually inspired to read Pride and Prejudice and Zombies and I got through it. I realized I could read Austen!'”

He also talked about the future of enhanced eBooks: “On YouTube, you’ll see there is a very highly produced book trailer for Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. That’s generated a couple hundred thousand views in the first week–generating an enormous amount of interest in the book. There’s also an Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter iPhone app, and there will be other multimedia content.”

He concluded: “I think books have to find a way to stay current in a marketplace that’s crowded with YouTube users learning to consume media in a new way. Publishers are realizing that now, and in terms of the iPad, the Kindle, the Nook and all of that, I think you’re going to see books come out with special features. I think the video we did for Lincoln won’t just be available on YouTube, but if you download it to your iPad you can have it as part of the added value of that book. Things like that are only going to increase.”