It's 10:08 p.m. on a Thursday night, and I feel the need to VENT! Today has been one of those classic days; anything that can go wrong, has. It's Murphy's Law or maybe it's the medication I'm taking that has me riled up (LOL). For those of you who know me, you know that I'm a very positive person. Almost to a sickening point, right(LOL)? I try to live by the Golden Rule and love my neighbor as myself, and all that good stuff in between(LOL). Negativity has no place in my world! Life is too short, and I'm not going to let a bunch of ignorant, small-minded people upset my journey.
However, tonight I feel the need to vent and spew forth my frustrations! Big-time! I wish I could do what I love to do and that is. . . to simply write. None of this BS would be mixed into the equation. In my perfect world, I'd write a book a year, maybe two, but not more. Readers would pre-order and flock to the bookstores on the day my books dropped, and I'd receive fan mail, glowing reviews, make all the bestseller lists and all would be well in my world without my ever leaving the comforts of my home. (sighing and leaning back in my chair). Yeah, that would be my perfect literary world.
Fast forward to reality: (translation. . . the real world). I'm so sick of the politics of publishing, I'm sick of being sick of being pulled in a million different directions, wearing all types of 'hats' that don't flatter me, dealing with arrogant authors who think they are special just because they wrote a book, constantly competing, hustling, keeping the buzz alive, dealing with reviews that are laced with personal agendas and then. . . waking up the next morning and doing it all over again. Welcome to my world.
Tonight, for instance, I just happened to surf onto this aspiring writer's blog and she ripped Loose Ends
, my second book, up and down. Said she could write circles around me and questioned if I was the state of the publishing industry. Hmmm, y'all know I'm sensitive and that just blew me out of the water. I had a few choice words, but hey. . . everybody has an opinion and I can respect that.
However, there are a few things I've learned that places everything in perspective for me. First of all, one thing I know if I don't know anything else is that everybody is not going to like what you write. You can't please all the people all the time; that's a given. Personally, I write for entertainment purposes; I write relationship based stories, that cover a topical issue, with spicy storylines. Plain and simple. If that's not your cup of tea, so be it. I've never said I was Toni Morrison or the second coming of a literary great. They are no illusions with me. I know what I can and cannot do; I'm not trying to change the world with my stories. . . and that's my perogative (as Bobby Brown would say). If I've touched one person by making them laugh, cry, think, then that's cool with me. If you aren't feeling me, cool. Find someone you are.
Secondly, why all the putdowns and comparisons? Why can't the African American literary community be supportive of one another? (I say the AA community because that's all I've been exposed to). If you think you can write circles around me. . . do it! Write your book, hustle, and get picked up by a major publishing house! There is plenty of room for everybody. There is plenty to go around. See, I will congratulate, not hate.
Second example: I forwarded an e-mail to a young lady about my newest release, Almost Doesn't Count. I had noticed on Barnes and Noble or somewhere that she loved Eric Jerome Dickey's latest novel and thought mine would appeal to her as well. Okay, I guess I spammed her. Don't shoot me! But. . . you would have thought I shot her. She responded with a nasty e-mail back that advised me to stop sending her my shit, bytch! Excuse me? Who is she calling a bytch? Is this the way African American women react and support one another? I hope not. In her post to EJD, she wished him the best and may God bless you, etc. Then she turns around and spits her venom on me. . . simply because I sent her an e-mail. Sad.
Thirdly: Why can't authors get along? Why all the cliches and backstabbing and jealousies, etc.? Don't get me wrong, 99% of the authors I have met are wonderful, talented human beings, it's just that 1% that leaves a bad taste in my mouth.
People, please stop the madness. Like I said, all I want to do is write. That's all I have ever wanted to do.
Thanks for listening. . . (or reading).