Things I've Learned Being a Literature Prostitute

There's a mantra I have. When the going gets rough, and life gets me down, I just recite these words of wisdom and encouragement:

"People are stupid, and I hate them."

Never is this more apparent than when you've become an author and are suddenly solely responsible for spreading the Gospel of You. Got a book published? Congratulations. Put on some makeup, you're a whore now, just like your mom.

Even people that I thought might be easy to hook in my scheme are throwing up insurmountable brick walls. Sending out emails and promoting my work is actually incredibly time consuming. There are bridges to mend, bridges to burn, and fires to put out. You CAN'T send mass emails, they have to be personalized. Now, before anyone says anything (not that anyone is reading this, of course), I'm not the type of person that burns bridges. The number of people I've truly stopped talking to I can count on one hand.

But sometimes there's that guy you haven't talked to for five years who's suddenly found themselves higher on the totem pole in the creative writing industry than you are (because you've turned all that "talking to people" time into "writing a novel" time), and you've got to sheepishly bust in (via e-mail) and say "Um... hi, how's things? You should tell everyone you know to read my book. And congratulations on the new kid."

It doesn't matter how cool you are, or how many friends you've got, how awesome your hats are or if Jesus himself enjoys your work (by the way, He totally does for the record), the moment you start talking about your book, you are now the Worst Person Ever. Nobody wants to hear it. They'd rather talk about girls or hockey riots or whatever it is that functional society people talk about these days (I wouldn't know, I've been writing a novel).

And I hate that about people. Especially because I do it myself. Everyone does. I wish I had the patience to sit through long descriptions of everyone else's projects and Things They Are Excited About. But I don't, because so much of it is crap (my projects included, let's not forget that), and there is NO WAY to prove otherwise to people.

So these are the odds I'm up against, and what I've been up to, if anyone's interested. But you're not, and that's okay too. I wouldn't expect anything else.


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