It wasn't long ago I discovered The Thirteen Most Obnoxious Publishing Stories of 2010. My thoughts? The author was kind to use the word obnoxious. The adjectives entering my mind were somewhat less tame.
Over the past few months, I've been fortunate to connect with a variety of writers. These are people I respect; they have a passion for what they do and are committed to the craft. Despite having never met them, they are incredible friends and mentors who teach me the tricks of the trade. I'm humbled to be supported and accepted by such talented individuals.
From them, I've learned writing is more than a hobby - it's a lifestyle. We live and breathe our words. We create characters and worlds that come to life, blurring the boundaries of reality. We own our work.
Serious writing requires serious commitment. Anyone who ever attempted completing a publishable product knows this. If you're like Alex George, you wake up at 5am to begin a few hours of uninterrupted writing before your children demand your attention. Many follow routines like LK Gardner-Griffie, who first puts in the required day job hours before heading home and activating her imagination. Or if you're like me, you work out in the morning, write in the afternoon, and spend the evenings studying the business.
The point is, we all spend a significant amount of time writing. And deleting, rewriting, editing, revising, staring, reading, studying, screaming, crying, shouting, cursing, fighting, and more.
But for most of us, our daily schedule does not allow for this:
Now there is an award winning novelist. She must have just finished editing.
Before I go further, I want to clarify one thing. Although I do not agree with (and as an Italian, am often offended by) the majority of the behaviors captured on this "show," I do not begrudge the cast for capitalizing an opportunities presented to them. Who wouldn't?
I'm more troubled that our society will most likely make the "novel" written by the star of the clip above a best seller.
And this bar hopping author is simply one example. Lauren, Nicole, and Hilary have all landed YA deals, but what I want to know is, how hard are they really working? For some reason, I'm unable to envision these gals sitting down to research agents, draft the perfect query letter, and pick themselves back up after being rejected. Not until after last call, anyway.
In fact, I'm skeptical more than a few words were written by the authors themselves. I suppose I can believe they came up with the idea and perhaps created some of the key plot events. But if you're asking me if I think they even read a book recently, let alone write one, my answer would be no.
As an aspiring novelist, I hold the industry in the highest regard. It is the Nirvana of the literary world. The highest honor; the strongest compliment. Publication symbolizes excellence.
And honestly, these posers clutter the shelves. It's a slap in the face to the writing community, and I'm disappointed to see quality and standards being overlooked for a name on the cover.
So, fellow writers, what are your thoughts? Do we sacrifice quality for celebrities or am I completely wrong? Have these icons something to offer through the written word? Are they worthy of publication?