So, last night, I was thinking about this whole strange relationship between writers/agents/publishers. It's strange to me because without writers... it doesn't happen, but the two other professions seem to be the ones that are respected. Whenever I'm in a bookstore or library, I'm astonished by the sheer number of books available--and each of them the product of this path from writer to publisher. Going through the process of querying is daunting and discouraging, and you feel a little like Oliver standing there with your bowl saying, "Please, Sir, I'd like some more." It seems like every day I stop and feel a little swamped with feelings of inadequacy. Am I really good enough? Why aren't they responding? What if I never get published?
Yesterday, I stumbled across a link in someone's blog... possibly Nathan's... about the process that Lord of the Flies went through in order to be published. I found it interesting that there isn't just a way paved in gold... even for literature destined to become a classic.
Anyway, I'm both discouraged and encouraged by the whole process today. When I read some agent's blogs or sites, I feel a little downtrodden for being just another unpublished writer who they can reject. That's not to say that agents aren't earning their keep and busy, but it just sucks being unable to make a living doing what you love when you have marketable talent... along with a million other people standing in line for their turn.
You're unique... just like everybody else.
Okay, so the movie is Ever After, and I've frankensteined it to reflect my feelings today:
"If you suffer your people to be educated, and their manners corrupted from infancy, and then punish them for those manuscripts to which their first education disposed them, what else is to be concluded, sire, but that you first make writers and then punish them?"
I've also stolen a conversation from Ever After for your reading pleasure:
Danielle: The Prince has read my manuscript?
Henry: I found it sentimental and dull. Honestly, the plight of the everyday writer bores me.
Danielle: I... take it you do not converse with many writers.
Henry: Ha, certainly not, no. Naturally.
Danielle: [starts walking again] Forgive me, Your Highness, but there is nothing "natural" about it. A country's character is defined by its "everyday writers," as you call them. They are the legs you stand on and that position demands *respect,* not...
Henry: Am I to understand that you find me... arrogant?
Danielle: Well, you gave one writer a life, but did you even glance at the others?