7 Days of Books: Simply Green Parties
Over the next seven days, I thought it would be fun to look at the past and take a look at each book that I’ve done over the years. Each day, I’ll blog about one book, starting with the very first book and ending with a sneak peek at my latest one, while sharing some insight into each one. You’ll also have a chance to win an autographed copy of each book by simply leaving a comment for each book. Hope you enjoy this trip down memory lane as much as I do!
BOOK: Simply Green Parties
YEAR PUBLISHED: 2007
Sooooo…… guess what publishing a book on Sept. 10, 2001 does for book sales: well, nothing. When you cancel a book tour, cancel TV appearances and basically have a shell-shocked country that really isn’t in the mood to hear my tips on “recycling a painter’s tarp into a canopy in the middle of the woods,” you basically have a book that does not sell.
Conscious Style Home tanked. I’m being charitable here. I think the only folks who bought it were my parents, my agent (and that’s questionable) and myself.
As an author, one of the worst things that can happen is this: BookScan. It basically is this computerized program that allows publishers, book sellers and agents to look at the actual number of books sold for authors. The key thing here is to remember this: not the number of books printed, but actually sold in bookstores to actual customers. Keep in mind I had great sales for my previous books—on activism and community service—and my insistence that I write a lifestyle book despite my book publisher’s advice that I don’t go this route, didn’t make matters any better.
So, I had to basically disappear from book publishing for several years to erase those awful numbers.
In between 2002-2006, I kept busy learning how to be a magazine editor by joining the launch team at Organic Style, then onto to Country Home where I wore a ton of different hats: columnist, stylist, producer, celebrity wrangler, decorating editor, planner and—this felt like it was all the time—travel agent. I hosted a TV show for the Fine Living Network called “50 Ways to Save the Planet” and even began production on my first series “Simply Green with Danny Seo.” Here’s a clip from the new defunct LIME TV network:
Yep, defunct. My experiences with LIME TV will be another blog post on another day! Anyway, by the time 2006 rolled around, I was ready to go back into publishing and with my experiences at Organic Style and Country Home, I knew I could create small, colorful, beautifully illustrated lifestyle books on living green with style.
By 2006, the whole country was jumping on the eco bandwagon. It was an easy sell and I ended up selling two books at once: Simply Green Parties and Simply Green Giving. And lo and behold, guess who was the publisher for these books: HarperCollins, the same home as ReganBooks.
At the book launch party at Stella McCartney in NYC, I was kinda thrilled to see Vanity Fair editor-in-chief Graydon Carter attend to support the book who came along with his lovely wife Anna Scott Carter. For a split-second, I thought “well, I think I can celebrate the fact that I sorta ‘made it’ now that Graydon Carter is here to support this book!” and then he asked me to get him a drink. You see, I think he thought I was a waiter. And in retrospect, I’m kinda dressed like a waiter in this picture. Back to the D-list for me….
There are lots of ideas in Parties that are perfect for birthday parties, evening dinners, baby showers and other events we all celebrate throughout the year. If I had to pick on project that got the most attention, it would be this one: turning a craft store birdhouse into a “fairy tale” bookhouse as a nursery gift. Use the jacket as the roof and decoupage the exterior with pages from the inside. Here’s how to make it from NBC’s The Today Show: