I came across something very interesting the other day: a collaborative project between Anna Funder and Australian Pearl company Paspaley.
Winner of the Miles Franklin Award in 2012 for All that I Am (my review here), Funder has written a short story entitled Everything Precious, which you receive in seven daily instalments after signing up (it’s free) here. (All they ask for is a name and an email address.)
There is a little ‘book’ trailer on the site, which admittedly is more of an ad for Paspaley, but the interesting thing is that here is an Aussie company paying an Aussie author to write a story for them. I have no idea how much Funder was paid, but kudos to Paspaley.
No doubt there’ll be some product placement, most likely in the final instalment. The question is, will it be a roll-the-eyes moment, or a gee-that’s-sweet moment? Given Funder’s the author, I expect the latter. I’ve received four instalments so far and am enjoying my daily dose.
Could this become a model for other corporations to support Australian writing as part of their marketing? Most of us are used to some product placement in films these days. Perhaps we should expect some more of it in fiction.
UPDATE: I was wrong: there was no product placement. (I knew I should have waited to read it all before I posted! Sigh.) And the story was excellent. I dip my lid to all parties.