Wednesday, August 29, 2012

struggles of writing and readership today - a rambling

Hello anyone who may have accidentally stumbled upon this blog,

I am Penny Copper, and no, that is not my real name. Today is a special day, today I am going to rant about all the difficulties surrounding making it in the writing world. A lot of what will be said is Captain Obvious material, but I'm saying it anyway, so deal. Let's not eff around and get down to it.

1. This one is a no-brain-required one: there are people who are willing to help you, but they are so few in comparison with the people who are looking out for their own skins, it's all about competition, I guess. I don't know who I can trust to review my material before it goes to print (no one in personal life is really qualified.)
2. Reading and Writing appeals to individual taste, but people confuse this with intellectual capacity. Just because I like urban fantasy and paranormal romance does not mean that I am stupid; I can totally appreciate the importance Nietzsche, Kant and Aristotle and I get the relevance of the beat generation, but I also understand that those things are not-so recreational. For leisure, I want something a little less mentally taxing (that's not to say that fantasy and romance NEVER yield a didactic purpose), and, lets face it, less boring, if you think that's silly: I NEVER ASKED YOU. Writers and readers are constantly trying to one-up each other by calling others dumb and unoriginal, which is just unnecessary, all you have to say is "not my cup of tea". This is why I hate hipster culture. Doing something for the sake of originality and/or intellectual superiority breeds not only insincerity, but plain old hostility, ergo, childlike insecurity and lower quality writing.
3. Because of the first two, those of us who are struggling to break into the industry have a HELL of a time trying to network.
4. Most of us are broke. The end. We cannot afford to pay off our student loans, let alone for advertising.
5. A lot, if not most of us, are hyper-emotional beings. We write for catharsis. Even if it's not something we are recognized as being good at, there is something that draws us to it. That being said, when we fall, we fall hard, and it hurts. 
6. This one is shocking: Some of us are...wait for it...WOMEN. I know, but you can handle it. There seems to be this myth swirling around that sexism is dead, and um, I think that is falser than false. This is coming from someone who used to get really annoyed with raging feminists. I used to think when feminists made a lot of noise they were causing more problems that they were fixing by creating a bigger divide between professional men and women. Now that I am well into my twenties and have a little work experience, I can no longer flail my limp teenage wrist and say "boys will be boys." FUCK NO. Even if we cannot be discriminated against legally from a job, there is still an underlying message in society that states that "women's interests"...i.e their thought, opinions, beliefs, are a subset to "normal" (male) issues. Ever notice the Women's Interest section in a book store? It is almost always confined to fashion magazines, and while I do love fashion and make up and that, am I totally wrong in thinking it should be labeled "Fashion," not "Women's Interest"? And why does breast cancer research get so little funding in comparison with men's cancers even though way more women are affected by breast, ovarian and uterine cancer? Don't get me started on the wage gap. Oh, and the new favorite republican myth that women cannot get pregnant from a rape! Dear God. What does this have to do with writing and readership? Everything. The message in western, maybe even global, culture, is that women don't need to be taken as seriously, even talented writers. 

Dear everyone, please respond to this post, tell me what you think, I am dying to know.

If you have the time, go to either Smashwords of Kindle and read WANTON LANDS and tell me what you think.

Thank you, and Sorry



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