It’s tempting to think the end is upon us because someone is going to publish One Direction fan fiction. Or because 50 Shades of Grey and its sequels are dominating the bestseller lists.
But I assure you there is still hope! The fact that these books have been or will be published and are doing well are actually good signs. It means people are still reading books. And someone out there is still willing to spend money publishing books by new authors.
Yes, it’s probably true that no one will learn anything deep and meaningful about themselves from reading those books. (They’re not exactly Tolstoy.) But people read them. And then people think, “I kinda like reading books,” and they want more. And when they want more, then publishers publish more.
(Or publishers have money from publishing those types of books to take risks on publishing other types of books. Like yours. Or mine. Although mine is soooo 50 Shades of Grey. Minus the sex, the central relationship, the real world setting, the….yeah. Just kidding.)
But what does this mean for you and me? Opportunity.
I realize I’m still in the early phases of my writerly journey and my attitude may change in the next eight plus years it takes me to get published, but it gives me hope to walk into a bookstore or library and see all the new books.
I spent a lot of time at the library when I was trying to sell the house. And there were hundreds of new books on the shelves. Hundreds. New books. Just published. Some by authors I’d never heard of.
Sure, some were blatant attempts to ride a wave. (Hunger Games cookbook anyone? “Gee, yeah, that sounds delicious. I don’t live in a destitute coal mining town, but I sure would like to eat like I do.”) And some were very much about current issues and will be useless in a year or two. But there was a ton of fiction. A ton. And such a variety, too. Anything from romance to cyborgs to cyborg romances…
I know. The whole path to publication can seem insurmountable at times. But when you’re feeling down just go to a bookstore and see all those people who’ve already done it. If they can do it, so can you. (And me. It’s always about me, of course.)
It’s not easy. It takes a looong time. And I do think not everyone can do it. (Just like not everyone clicks with Geometry.) But I really do think there’s room for hope out there. So, just give it ten years and you (and me), too, will be on the bookshelves.