The New York Post this morning wrote of Jon-Jon Goulian’s “pre-crash deal” with Random House–the reported $700,000 advance for a book that, despite its ample publicity, has been “notably absent from best-seller lists.” The Post quotes a figure of 957 copies sold of Mr. Goulian’s memoir of gender confusion, a figure Nielsen Bookscan quoted to The Observer as 1,000 sold.
It is earlyish in the book’s run (The Man in the Gray Flannel Skirt was released just over a month ago), and Mr. Goulian has been promoting the book with in-person events. But short of a book by a celebrity and his co-author (Chaz Bono’s memoir of a different sort of gender confusion, Transition, was released a week before Mr. Goulian’s memoir and has sold, per Nielsen Bookscan, 6,000 copies), any book by an emerging author is a hard sell, no matter the publicity. Well-loved blogger Matthew Gallaway posed with Mr. Goulian for Out and has written much on the subject of publishing for The Awl; his novel The Metropolis Case, released in December 2010, has sold (per Nielsen Bookscan) 2,000 copies, though his advance was surely a bit under $700,000.
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