Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Jealousy - A-Z Blogging Challenge

Even writers who aren't jealous by nature can get jealous about writing. There are only so many publishers, they only have so much money. It's impossible not to feel a little competitive.

Competitiveness can be healthy. I know this, because I am ridiculously un-competitive - I blame being an only child, simply because that was my parents' choice rather than mine and thus I can pretend it isn't my fault ;) - and it can be crippling! But being competitive is only a good thing if it's healthy, loving and motivating (wow, I sounded like a self-help author there, I do hope I'm not ill). Thinking 'Oh, that person achieved that, I bet I could too!' is fine. Thinking 'That should be MINE!' and feeling vindictive is less good.

But - and I know I say this all the time - I think the new e-self-publishing revolution will take care of a lot of that. While I, and most writers I know, would prefer to be traditionally published, the fact remains that we now have something to do with the novel that gets rejected for being too edgy, too dark, too experimental, too 1980s.

You can always go digital and self-promote like mad. It's not a get-rich-quick scheme and you may sell no more than a handful of copies. But it's something. It's recourse.

And it's better than sitting at home feeling jealous :)

9 comments:

  1. Great J post Ellen. Like the get off your arse and do it instead of moaning about it attitude!

    Wish I had the guts to do just that, but HeyHo! Moan, Moan, Moan!

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  2. We're Irish, Ann. Optimism is unpatriotic. They'll have my passport off me any day now for this!

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  3. LOLing at your comment above, Ellen. So funny! But I did like this un-Irish optimism here, you have such a good point. Perhaps some jealousy stems from the feeling that there are only so many pieces of the pie to go around and when someone gets a deal, it means less deals available for the rest of us. But more options means more deals, thus less jealousy! Well-thought out post!

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  4. Yes, I'm no stranger to jealousy. I'm even kind of jealous of those of you who signed up to this challenge in time!

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  5. Glad you liked it Karen - I don't want to turn into a self-publishing evangelist because I don't feel it is the path for me personally, but I would definitely consider it if my book couldn't find a home.

    I just feel more options on the table can only be positive. I once read about a judge in his 70s who had written a book but he couldn't sell it because no publisher wanted to take a risk on a debut author his age as the volume of future books was likely to be lower.

    Imagine how cool a book written by someone that smart and with that much life experience could be! And imagine if he'd been able to release it himself. Traditional publishing doesn't suit everyone, and it's great to think that ultimately, this will lead to more books!

    Simon, I won't lie, it's been great fun - but it can also be tough. I'm totally stumped for a K topic and am considering learning what a katathermometer is just so I can post about it so it isn't all fun . . . but there is always next year!

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  6. Yay for being pro-active!!!

    Take care
    x

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  7. I have to admit to a smidgen of jealousy for agented writers, especially now as I've begun the query process and have started receiving the depressing onslaught of rejection.

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  8. I think I'd admit to a bit of jealousy when the publishing houses let brain dead morons (like the cast of Jersey Shore) have writing contracts.

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  9. I do like pie. And now the pie is bigger, so everyone has a better chance of getting a piece.

    Or there are now more kinds of pie. Or more places to get pie.

    I'm going somewhere with this, honestly.

    It may be to go get some pie, because I'm hungry now...

    Seriously though, great post. The line between "I'd like some of that" and "Why do they have that and not me?" is so fine it's incredibly easy to slip across it.

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