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Nov 23, 2017

How to Crack the ‘Bestseller Code’ with Jodie Archer: Part One

Writer, literary scholar, publishing consultant, and co-author of the internationally acclaimed book The Bestseller Code, Jodie Archer, returns one year later to chat with me about the book’s runaway success, turning the algorithm into an innovative consulting service for writers, her own writer’s journey, and one very unexpected turn for the host of this show.

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Before getting her PhD from Stanford, Ms. Archer studied English at Cambridge, worked in journalism and TV, and was an acquisitions editor for Penguin UK publishing.

At Stanford Jodie taught writing and researched both contemporary fiction and bestsellers. Upon completion of her doctoral work she was recruited by Apple where she was the lead in research on books.

The Bestseller Code is based on Jodie’s doctoral research with professor Matthew Jockers (co-founder of the cutting edge Stanford Literary Lab), an algorithm they honed for four years and refined by text mining over 20,000 contemporary novels using around 300,000 data points.

The Guardian predicted that the book would “… revolutionize the publishing industry,” because the technology could predict bestsellers 80% of the time, based on theme, plot, character, and many other signatures.

The authors were, of course, hounded by writers from all over the world for help with their manuscripts. And finally — following their breakthrough research — Jodie and Matt have founded a unique book consulting service for authors, publishers, and agents, based on the algorithm in The Bestseller Code.

Beginning December 1st, 2017, will offer three tiers of service to authors: single manuscript analysis, series analysis, and VIP service. [This interview was recorded in anticipation of that date in mid-October.]

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In Part One of this file Jodie Archer and I discuss:

  • How writers from around the world convinced the authors to do consulting services
  • The innovation behind the anticipated Archer Jockers’ service for novelists
  • How to find your bestselling moment with integrity
  • The power of “good” press, great agents, and selling the international rights to your book
  • Jodie’s own multi-genre writing projects
  • How yours truly took a leap of faith and became a beta tester for the service (cliffhanger pending)

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