As can be assumed, I picked Option 1 as my blog topic due to my current/completed research project related to the top horror novels of 2000-2014. My own research that was related towards a correlation between book length and authors success opened up many other avenues of approach towards this thesis (which since then has been changed two times). To answer the question of how I might persuade the nationally known literary scholar that quantitative methods for literary study could contribute to the project, I would simply tell him about how my own research has opened many doors for interpretation due to data.
For example, from the very beginning of my database creation I noticed that Horror texts have become way more popular as a genre as time has passed. The way I was able to see this trend was by the absence of data for the years 2001-2005 and 2007-2008. While this does not reflect that people weren’t reading horror texts, it does reflect that there wasn’t enough of that genre sold in those years for there to be a horror category.
Another example refers to Stephen King specifically, the author I have decided to conduct a book-length study on. In my database Stephen King is one of the prominent authors from 2000-2014 (13 appearances & 9 titles). Interestingly enough the majority of his texts are longer than the average range of pages for the database. Looking at King’s works compared with the other authors that were prominent in 2000-2014, it shows that the more successful authors are the longer their range of books are. While this does not confirm that as an author becomes more successful the longer their books are, the pattern is still there.
For my last example of King’s work, I looked closely at his range of pages to investegate this pattern more closely. If the observation proved to be true, King’s works would have been shorter in the beginning and longer towards the present time. But looking at the data there was no correlation to support this. King’s works were shorter in the beginning, longer in the middle and in a middle range towards the end. So by looking at this we may be able to deduce that King’s work and success reflected a range of pages that was in demand by consumers.
I feel that if I presented and elaborated this data to the nationally known literary schoolar, they would at least be compeled and interested by my findings. I feel that by showing a combination of data with social interpretaions they can work together to enhance a book-length study of a famous author, like Stephen King.