Envy & Jealousy: The Writer’s heart.

Envious? Jealous? Such ugly emotions. And yet we’ve all been there, some of us a little and some of us a lot. Unfortunately whereas the writing and revising and submitting part of the writer equation is very much up to the writer, the publishing part is not. It’s a nightmare scenario to have been working on your Magnum Opus- poetry, short story collection, novel, memoir, non-fiction—only to watch it turn into a Magnum Hopeless because it’s not getting published. By that I mean either an agent will not take on your work, or if an agent does sign you on, then an editor will not.

We work hard at our craft but are getting nowhere only to keep picking up published book that we think are rubbish. Perhaps the writing is mundane, or the there is no plot, or a boring plot, or the characters are boring, or the setting falls flat.
Gut reaction: How in the world did this get published?
Answer: Because some gatekeeper’s gut had the opposite reaction.
Mind numbing for one is mind blowing for another.
And also the gatekeeper thinks that this particular book will sell. ‘Thinks’ is the operative word here because no one really knows that in the world will sell. Vampires falling in love and solving mysteries might be a good bet even ten, really, even there who know.

I know. It’s not fair. It’s not fair at all. And because of the amount of subjectivity involved, the publishing industry can be particularly unfair. It is the belief that things are unfair that leads to envy and jealousy. Yet, whenever I come across a book I’d like to flush down the toilet, I never the less have great respect for the author. Why? Because the author had the discipline to sit there and write the entire thing despite any misgivings and doubts she/he may have had. Because we all have them- first time struggling writers and veterans who don’t know what to expect in this fickle publishing climate. I know the biggest cliché is to write because you must, but this is the ultimate test I pose to everyone who tells me they want to write:
Imagine you will never get published. Never Ever Ever.
Or you will get published but get no attention.
Will you still write?