Writing Drains and Baseball Games

I'm alive.

I've been busy lately dunking my head into the hot caramel coating that is the publishing world, and after reading the blogs of many fine folks who work as cogs in that massive industry, have come to the conclusion that
1) Reading about other people wading through submission slush piles is probably much more fun than doing it myself, and
2) Learning about publishing houses is fascinating on general terms, but encourages the prospective writer in much the same manner as holding a hamburger up to a milk cow. In other words, every agent, editor, editor's assistant, and editor's assistant's intern says, more or less, "Over 99.999% of all writers fail and most of what we see is utter crap, and even if it's not utter crap it will probably never make it through our labyrinthine processes, so abandon all hope, stop writing, and shrivel up into a little ball of shattered dreams while you go back to your pencil pushing day job, you loser."

I suppose the rare (and lucky!) writer might stay blissfully unaware of the publishing process, pop out a masterpiece, and get swept lovingly into the arms of a instant book contract, and that would be grand. The wiser writer might try to see the world through an editor's eyes, learning what the common follies are and how to avoid them, but might also become so discouraged by the odds that said writer scoops up their entire work in progress and throws it into the fire, watching it burn with a maddened eye and cackling something about "freedom." (The computer "Digital Age" equivalent of this would be going to the end of a working file and hitting the backspace key for every single letter. Slow and painful.)

But the editor's perspective is honest, I'll give it that. It's harsh and mean, but at least it's a realistic portrayal of what to expect should you ever be foolish enough to attempt publication. I would much rather read through editors' blogs than the floofy, flouncy blogs of would-be writers, which all go along the lines of "blah blah high art form blah future literature scholars will know what I really mean blah blah and, oh yes. I haven't actually published anything yet." Probably meaning that they are writing a story about the antics of their cat, complete with a sample book cover that somehow includes their name Photoshopped into large glittering letters across the top half of the page. In my own musings on the art of writing, I must be careful not to fall into this category, the hoity class of writers who stuck their pens too far up their noses.

So this I now publicly vow: I will never ever submit a manuscript written on stationary that has the inkwell and plume motif at the top. I will not include glitter in the envelope. Or cookies. Or action figures based on my characters. Or a market analysis. Maybe whiskey. I might include whiskey. I also hereby vow to disassociate my specific writing from anything to do with intent-to-publish, restricting it entirely for the purpose of "fun," and if the thought of publishing occurs to me while in the act of writing, to go soak my head.

There. I feel so cleansed.

But back to the more important matter at hand...

Go Rockies! Woo, we gonna sweep the Championships, hooya! I feel a speck bad for the Phillies, and more than a speck bad for the poor Cubs, but at least the next round pits Colorado against the Diamondbacks. We go, Western Division! They're calling it the Continental Divide Championship. (Does Arizona have mountains? Hmm.) Watch as the Rockies blaze past the D-backs for an unbroken post-season streak! It'll happen.

Still, poor Cubs...

I'm hoping that the Red Sox take it tomorrow, but Yankees/Indians? Whatever. I have absolutely no opinion on that one. A Red Sox/Rockies or a Yankees/Rockies showdown would be pretty fun, though. If the Rockies could blast their way through either of those teams, maybe they would gain some much-needed national cred. The western teams don't get a lot of hoopla, other than the ones in California (which we consider not only its own division, but possibly its own sport.) That's the nice thing about the West. Outside of CA, we only have the Mariners, D-backs, and Rockies to root for. We're all like one gigantic family out here. (Tho I'm for the Red Sox, if the Rockies bail out. Wee!)

So much fun watching the crowd at Coors Field tonight, and wishing I could be in it. The last time I was there, it was raining and mostly empty. CO friends, are you getting tickets to these things? Have a spare one? I'll bring my own broom!

And a random question - Sure, the Rockies have Dinger the Dinosaur as their mascot, which I'll grant you is rather weird. Dinosaur fossils...rocks...it sort of makes sense. But why in the name of the great gravy train is the mascot for the Arizona Diamondbacks "Bobby the Bobcat?" Is there something wrong with selling rattlesnake plushies for the kids to cuddle with?


Monster Library Student said...

Ha ha ha..."why in the name of the great gravy train," I am going to have to use that one! ha ha ha...

Don't give up friend. You will get published. Think of the world without Harry Potter...she was turned down by a half dozen. Start small and local, then once someone sees the gem that is your book it can always be picked up by a larger publisher!

Also, try college presses. Some with publish for non-text-y stuff too!

There is hope for us!

keebler said...

"'I can't do it' never yet accomplished anything. 'I will try' has performed miracles."
--George P.T. Burnham

Don't roll over and die before you even start! It is high time you start believing all of us who tell you that you are talented.
Love, love, love....

PS Go Rockies!