The Corner

New Media Encounter

Kimball continues a tradition Encounter has long embraced. This was in a Brian Anderson City Journal piece in 2003:

There’s another reason that conservative books are selling: the emergence of conservative talk radio, cable TV, and the Internet. This “right-wing media circuit,” as Publishers Weekly describes it, reaches millions of potential readers and thus makes the traditional gatekeepers of ideas—above all, the New York Times Book Review and the New York Review of Books, publications that rarely deign to review conservative titles—increasingly irrelevant in winning an audience for a book.

Ask publisher Peter Collier. After only three years in business, his Encounter Books will sell $3 million worth of books this year, he says—not bad for an imprint specializing in serious works of history, culture, and political analysis aimed at both conservatives and open-minded liberals. Several Encounter titles have sold in the 35,000 range, and a Bill Kristol–edited volume laying out reasons for war in Iraq has sold over 60,000 copies. Instead of worrying about high-profile reviews in the media mainstream—“I’ve had God knows how many books published by now, and maybe three reviews in the New York Times Book Review,” laughs Collier—Encounter sells books by getting its authors discussed on the Internet and interviewed on talk radio, Fox News, and C-Span’s ideologically neutral Book TV. “A Q & A on NRO sells books very, very well,” Collier explains. “It’s comparable to a major newspaper review.” A bold Drudge Report headline will move far more copies than even good newspaper reviews, claims Regnery’s Marji Ross. A book discussed on AndrewSullivan will briefly blast up the best-seller list—even hitting the top five.


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