Friday, September 20, 2013

Jonathan Franzen is a Giant . . .

You fill in the blank. I've decided not to get sued.

In my latest novel the first line is: There isn't enough L'Oreal on the planet to cover up my white trash roots.

I love that line. That sentence, more than any other I've written, describes me.

I didn't grow up in a trailer, but we didn't have a lot of money in a place where people did have a lot of money. I'm not proud or ashamed of that. It just was.

Now I live the American Dream. I live in a house bigger than my parents had. I drive a car better than my parents did. Not bragging, just pointing out, that I live the American Dream.

But for writers there hasn't been an American Dream. The majority of writers have been locked out of the publishing world. Their life has been a flurry of rejections and doors slamming in their faces.

No longer.

But not if it were up to Jonathan Franzen. Read his article.

He thinks that writers should not have the opportunities that small presses and Amazon have afforded them. He considers Jeff Bezos one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse for giving writers these advantages.

I say, "Boulderdash."

And so does Amanda Hess here.

I have one thing to say to Jonathan Franzen. "Who died and made you king of anything?"

If the point of the American Dream is to have things better than your parents did, assuming either of my parents were writers, then how is publishing NOT better than they would have had it?

I can publish a book tomorrow. Heck, could put one out tonight.

Will it have a professional cover? Check

Will it be edited? Check

Will I have told a story? Check

Will it have distribution? Check (Hello, Amazon!)

So why on Earth should I not be able to put out my stories? Because some elitist thinks I'm going to poop in his country club's swimming pool?

I've never been one for country clubs or any type of organization that is exclusive. I have no patience for us vs them.

And up until Amazon and Jeff Bezos gave us Kindle Direct Publishing, the publishing world has been a country club. How can it be bad, if a girl from a small house where she shared a room with her sister, can publish the stories that she writes? The stories she couldn't stop writing if you held a gun to her head.

I for one will be putting out books until I have no more stories to tell.

And Jonathan Franzen can kiss my sweet. . .

You fill in the blank.


1 comment:

Sarah Glenn said...

I've run into this attitude from less... celebrated authors as well. Yeah, a lot of questionable stuff is being printed. That was going on before the bemoaned loss of the sacred gatekeepers, though. I've seen lots of self-pubbed newsletters, comics, and books over the years. The only differences now: writers don't need to do the printing themselves, and they're launching from a higher platform.

Good writing will out. The gatekeepers of the comic book world closed their doors to Elfquest in the Eighties, and the Pinis self-pubbed. They did a good job, and the comic companies wound up paying for the right to reprint the series.