07 April 2010

Show me the merch

[Forgive any formatting problems below as I update this post with new additions to the list. Blogger is acting up and not posting the same way twice!]

Coming soon: Eat, Pray, Love-inspired jewelry, according to Galleycat:
According to WWD, the LA-based jewelry company Dogeared will design the fashion line. Readers and viewers can buy the merchandise at Fred Segal and ABC Home, and prices will range between "$20 to more than $100." In addition, the company will provide similar merchandise for Sex in the City 2 ...
This got me thinking about merchandise tie-ins for my book. What would be the logical options? Um. Tacky t-shirts. Tourist action figure (Now whips out the camera 3 times faster!). Postcards. Beer bottles or coasters, maybe. Pastries, definitely. Yes, that's it: E5BID-branded croissants! Any bakers who read this should call me to talk numbers, make deals, plan strategy. Big money awaits! Mega-profits guaranteed!!  

Some other ideas for merchandise tie-ins for famous travel books:

  • A Walk in the Woods (Bill Bryson): hiking boots, freeze-dried meals, bear spray
  • The Innocents Abroad (Mark Twain): cigars, random bones of random saints
  • Assassination Vacation (Sarah Vowell): replica of Ford's Theater, grassy knoll, wind-up toy of singing-dancing assassin 
  • Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (Hunter S. Thompson): um, nothing that would be legal to sell
  • Skating to Antarctica (Jenny Diski): mittens. Thick, super-insulated, Gore-Tex mittens.
  • A Year in Provence (Peter Mayle): pastis glasses, piece of sheetrock
  • Heat (Bill Buford): chef's toque, knives, book of Dante 
  • Via Twitter, from @CGTravels:  Into The Wild: emergency snacks
  • Global Soul (Pico Iyer): Skymall gift card, recipe for Korean Tandoori Calamari Tacos
  • Anything by Calvin Trillin: bib, Pepto-Bismol 
  • An Irreverent Curiosity (David Farley): Um ... Italian vocabulary flash cards. (Wait, what were you expecting me to say?)
  • Round Ireland with a Fridge (Tony Hawks): magnets, Tupperware, baking soda, Roisin's phone number
GalleyCat has picked up this important cause (thanks for the shout-out, GC!), with editor Jason Boog offering this inspired-yet-terrifying suggestion: H.P. Lovecraft-inspired Cthulhu Sushi.  Lee, I'm sure, would love it.


  1. Paul Theroux (pick a random book) - box of Prozac, elf-incriminating travel diary, map with course drawn on it that avoids all population centres, bottle of scotch.

    Bitter Lemons of Cyprus (Lawrence Durrell) - map of Cyprus, lemons, vinegar.

  2. Oops. That's "self-incriminating" rather than "elf-incriminating", which is of course racist.

  3. I think I would have been more interested to read a book that included elf-incrimination rather than self-incrimination

  4. @Mike: I'm with Hannah. Elf-incrimination sounds more interesting, like Theroux was revealing that the Keebler guys are criminal masterminds. The cookies are just a front--I KNEW IT!

  5. I like this game! How about...

    -An accompanying Filipino karaoke CD/DVD for Pico Iyer's Video Night in Kathmandu? Or a special edition Blu-Ray of First Blood with Iyer commentary track?

    -Wal-Mart or Home Depot could roll out a whole line of DIY/home-reno/lifestyle products for Under the Tuscan Sun.

    -And EPL definitely shouldn't stop at jewelry. Prayer beads! Pocket meditation guides! Fridge magnets emblazoned with inspirational Liz Gilbert one-liners! The sky is the limit.

  6. @Eva: oh, of course, Filipino karaoke for Video Night! That's a great one. And I think a PI commentary track would VASTLY improve "First Blood."


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