Monday, May 15, 2006

Wake Me When I know What I'm Writing

Anyone who's done any research on what it takes in this day and time to get a book published knows that the hoops one must jump through are endless and varied. From the query to the synopsis to contracts and final editing... moving hoops, fire filled hoops, hoops so tiny a poodle would squeeze through, hours spent on maneuvering one's way through these hoops just to see that product of our imagination take on form and substance. In this millenium, that is only the beginning, writer's must also take on a formidable chunk of the marketing of their book in order to make it. The roadblocks and red tape associated with getting a book in print nowdays are sucking hours of writing time away from writers. It's a wonder any of us keep at it. Let's face it, if we were actually good at sales, we'd make our living getting used cars off the lot.

Then there is the problem of genre. How lucky some writers are, they know exactly what kind of book they're writing: If it contains a vampire, werewolf, demon or ghost, it's horror. Add a dragon and it's now a fantasy. Most of the action centered around girl and boy trying to hook up makes it a love story. If the book contains any machine not yet in existance or takes place outside of the milky way, even if there is a dragon, vampire and somebody trying to hook up, it's science fiction. If your main characters are pilgrims, it's historical fiction. Pilgrims hooking up, historical romance. Any story with a police detective as the main character is a mystery, add a lawyer and either a scientist or a computer genius and now you've got a thriller.

Somewhere out there are the just plain story books like mine, genre: fiction. White Oleander, She's Come Undone, anything by John Irving... just stories. Stories about people overcoming obstacles and discovering they're bigger, badder and better than they thought they were.

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