When books and films collide, on YouTube 3 Comments

When books and films collide, on YouTube

I didn’t know until recently that trailers existed for books. Apparently they do. The things one learns on the internet. The exploding gene of literary classics combined with monsters, led me to contemplate the way these books have been marketed. In line with the current zombie craze, I’m calling it a craze, though I am aware of many people who believe in the inevitability of the zombie apocalypse. People like Barnesm and Vociferous Whimsy.

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies was released last year. Written by Seth Grahame-Smith and published through Quirk Books, it was the first in a whole host of what they term ‘literary monster mash-ups and remixed classics’. Titles so far include: Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters, Abraham Lincoln, Vampire HunterAndroid Karenina among others.

More on mash ups and the origin of Quirk Classics in the Age.

Quirk’s mission: To enhance classic novels with pop culture phenomena. Quirk Classics are “designed to be cleverly conceived, well-written, and entertainingly executed masterpieces that bring new fans to both classic works of literature and to original works of genre-based fiction”.

The prequel for Pride and Prejudice and Zombies has been released this year, titled Dawn of the Dreadfuls, and written by Steve Hockensmith. Chronicling the lives of the Bennett sisters before the events of Pride and Prejudice, before Mr Darcy came along. A time when a young girl could engage with such acceptable pursuits as decapitating the undead. Ah, wasn’t the past such a carefree place? … Where was I?

The trailer for Dawn of the Dreadfuls, is B-grade and poorly acted but hysterically funny too. Also produced by Quirk Books the other trailers are also heavy on the B-grade meets Regency Era elements, which appeal to some and are abhorrent to others.

I noted the way Quirk Books have engaged with their audience, their website has a social media section. Is this perhaps something we will see in future publishing and writing ventures? Where the publisher seeks to match a commercial concept with the audience/demographic/sub culture and then outsource the writer to do the work? Strikes me as bizarre, but there you go I guess.

  • Anton Badcough

    Thomas Pynchon’s newest novel, Inherent Vice has a little trailer on youtube. And it’s supposed to be Pynch actually doing the reading! Crazy!

    • http://www.expressmedia.org.au/voiceworks/ Johannes Jakob

      I read that book. It was good but nowhere near as good as it could have been. He’s always more or less written detective books, in his own bizzaro way, so it was a bit weird to have the cover say it was an “unaccustomed” genre for him. The trouble with it was that all the usual beffudling Pynchon intricacies were channeled into the literal detective story, where you kind of expect them, so a lot of the overall magic was lost. Still a good read, but I liked ‘V’ a lot more.

  • Anton

    Yeah. I guess I agree. The guy has style though, and you need style. The Crying Lot of 49 is also great. And very confusing.

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