Publishing house’s creative advertising attracts unwanted attention

WICHITA — As a new, small publishing house, Wichita’s C. Anderson Publishing is being creative in getting the word out about one of its first endeavors. Too creative, as it turns out.

Caleb Anderson started the company last year and published an e-book of the fantasy story “Legacy of the Bloodborn” by Max Cooper, which is a pen name.

Now, the book is going to be published in paperback, which will be the first one for the company.

“We decided, ‘Hey, let’s test some marketing,’” Anderson says.

Cooper is known for his calligraphy – he handwrites his books – so Anderson had Cooper write some quotes from his book on parchment paper and sealed each of them with wax. The plan was to put them on public bulletin boards around town, such as in coffee shops. The idea was to arouse curiosity about the book.

One of the volunteers distributing the quotes, who happened to be Anderson’s wife, Melinda, accidentally put one of the quotes on a private bulletin board at Wichita State University.

“And of course – of course – the quote had something to do with death,” Caleb Anderson says.

He thinks it was a professor’s bulletin board.

“They went straight to the cops.”

Anderson says the lesson is publicity should “be fresh but not too real.”

Though that piece of parchment paper didn’t have the intended outcome, Anderson says it’s not all bad.

“I guess it’s a funny story that I can tell people that can lead into, ‘Hey, want to buy the book?’”