Moonrat at Editorial Ass defines how dreary these publishing times are (and she'll even send you elsewhere for more info). Frankly, I'm not sure what to make of all of it. I've been spouting leftist propaganda (my previous post, apparently), but outside of that, I'm lost.
I am sincerely questioning what to do in this sort of climate, but my answers are few and far between. Clearly, the last thing we should do is panic. If there's one thing everyone can agree on, panic makes things worse. There needn't be any heading for the hills or standing in line at banks (as if I had any money to put there anyway), but doing nothing shows equally poor judgment. What is the answer?
The only thing I can come up with that I cannot possibly fathom creating dissonance is the simple suggestion to write more better. Yes, okay, that should have been write more, better; but I kind of like the way the ungrammatical looks sometimes. It's a relatively complicated two-part plan. Here's how it works:
1. Write more. That may seem counter-intuitive considering how difficult it can be to sell or even give away words at this juncture (I'm talking to you, my limited subscriber base). Yet, writing more, if nothing else, can help keep that panic we talked about from getting the better of you. Sure, you may end up throwing that in the trash, but (and no offense here, I'm talking to myself as much as anybody) you should probably be playing a lot more trash-can basketball anyway. Writing is how we grow, and if you're feeling a little like somebody put baby in a corner, some extra growth might be all you need.
2. Write better. I know, I know—easier said than done. But I'm serious. Do it. Spend more time on that sentence you just took .5 secs to input into your word processor. Nobody's buying your stuff? Well, then there's no hurry for it to go anywhere is there? Reread the sentence, then the next. Make a paragraph out of a couple of them, but make sure it's sound and productive. Before you know it, you'll have a page that really holds together like a page should. After that, there's no telling how far you'll go. The fact that books are still being published means that not everybody is in the doghouse. The best writers will still be published and read. If you're not among them, it means you need to write better, and quickly. I'm not joking. This is the same advice I give myself every time I get a thin envelope back from an agent.
That's it. That's my advice. And, as a bonus if you are committed enough to try it, you'll realize that the two steps feed off of one another. More writing leads to better writing, and better writing demands (and deserves) more of the same. Just try it. And if it doesn't work, feel free to leave tons of comment spam about how you hate my mother. She won't mind. She's a wonderful lady.
Causes Jonathan Dozier-Ezell Supports
Literacy, literacy, literacy ... and world peace.