My hair’s reaching that point where it won’t lie down, it just sticks straight up like I have a sink scrubber on my head. More about that tomorrow, I don’t feel up to writing the whole thing now.
Today will be another 80+ degree day. GO HOME, OCTOBER. YOU’RE DRUNK.
There’s been some talk lately about “An open letter to the self-published author feeling dissed.”
I asked Sutton, “What do you say to the indie writer who reminds you that Walt Whitman was self-published?”
“You are not Walt Whitman,” he said. “The 21st century is different in so many ways from the 19th that the comparison is meaningless. No one is forbidding you from self-publishing, but neither is anyone required to pay attention.”
We both agree that books from indie writers will only increase. “It may engender a whole new stream of book reviewing,” Sutton said, “but I doubt it, because people are more interested in writing self-published books than in reading them. And if old media is so passe, why do they care so much about what we think?” (Washington Post)
This is, in large part, why I’m considering no longer offering editing services. The sheer enraged entitlement of anyone who thinks it’s “easy” to write a book, that they don’t have to study craft or do their due diligence on the industry itself, they can just vomit up whatever wish-fulfillment or fanfic they want and have it immediately make them buckets of money, is bad enough. (I am well aware I am generalising here.) But when that entitlement slops over into the egregiously bad behaviour one sees daily–well, it’s worse than reading slush, and that’s saying something. It’s getting to the point that I’ve refused clients because their expectation is that I’ll introduce them to an agent, give them a magic handshake, or that my job is to kowtow to them instead of to edit.
I realise these are several different issues–the self-publishing shit volcano, the idea that an author who publishes with a trad house is somehow a “gatekeeper” or a “traitor,” the culture of entitlement on the internet, the ease of firing off an email or blog comment when someone’s opinion has pissed you off–but added together, they make me tired.
I also wonder whether people were as entitled before the internet, but this just puts it on display and gives it a venue. Given the plus ca change involved in humanity, it’s not unlikely.
I am SO GLAD I am not reading slush anymore. Even years ago before people could scratch out some bellybutton lint and expect to be paid for it on Amazon, one would get nasty, hate-filled screeds from a certain slice of the slush pile. It’s only grown worse, and seems to be bleeding over into other people who want to get “published” (if you can call it that) by hook, crook, or any other method. I understand wanting to get your story out to the world, I really do. My understanding and compassion, however, does not excuse you treating someone badly, making death threats, or calling you a “toof aced lieing cunt[sic]” like the email that landed in my inbox this morning.
*eyeroll* AND YOU WONDER WHY I TURNED DOWN THE CHANCE TO EDIT YOUR 130K MAGNUM OPUS, SIR. If the only word you can spell correctly is “cunt,” there is not enough money in the world to pay me for the headache.
Anyway. *clears throat* I’m not sure how this is all going to shake out for the industry. But until the market adds some quality control, my time might be better spent knitting.