Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Book Review

I'm not in the habit of pimping other people books, particularly when they are about advertising. 

And particularly not when my book RoundSeventeen &1/2: The Names have been Changed to Protect the Inefficient, is currently languishing on the Amazon sales chart at about 2,783,941. Right behind #23 in the Survivorman's Guide: How to Recoup the Nutrients in your Own Poop.

But in Thomas Kemeny's case, I will make an exception. 

I just finished his debut book, Junior, Writing Your Way Ahead in Advertising. And when I say finished I mean I polished it off in an afternoon, in between a session on the bench press, taking out the garbage and nailing a plastic decoy owl to my pergola to ward off the Norwegian Tree Rats.

The book is mercifully short. 

I say mercifully because, and I think Thomas would agree, no one wants to read that much about our business. In fact, after living in Los Angeles, the entertainment capitol of the world, for so long, I can tell you people outside of this business don't want to read about it all.

But Mr. Kemeny's book is written for a specific audience -- those who want to get in. 

For the life of me I don't know why anyone would? The hours are long, the stress is tortuous, and the pay...well, the pay is about 1/3 of what it was when I was coming up through the ranks. Of course, we didn't have free Le Croix water stocked in the fridge and that seems to be the big selling point of most ad agencies these days.

But I digress. 

I thoroughly enjoyed Mr. Kemeny's book. Particularly the first half when he reviews his exploits of getting his first break at Crispin Porter. His confidence and willingness to break all the rules of business engagement was refreshing. I wish I had half that swagger at that point in my career.

Instead, I followed the staid directions of people like Maxine Paetro and ended up writing crappy Help Wanted ads in Recruitment Advertising for three years. 

Thanks Maxine.

Not only did I enjoy reading Junior, this grizzled old 44 year old learned some new tricks. Which I plan to start employing in the email blasts, banners and CTA buttons I now craft on a daily basis.

Maybe I'll start working on a companion book to Mr. Kemeny's, Seasoned Senior, Writing Your Way OUT of Advertising.


Palese said...

Just started reading it. Whether veteran or junior, networking and selling yourself is a big part your advertising success. That first part is a great example of him selling himself.

Kem Dinally said...

Did you say "Writing Your Way OUT of Advertising." I'll be the first one on line to buy it.