allergic to getting published, smoke dreams
Art is subjective. It is difficult to get people to sit down and read your work with an open mind. In this climate, too, everyone is anxious and buzzed from too much stimulus. Why should they pay attention to anonymous you, when there are thousands upon thousands of already published writers, who are already doing their own thing quite comfortably and well?
Exploring the wide world of publishing has not been inspiring. Taking my first steps in “real” publishing (by which I mean, sending stuff out to be mostly rejected) as a “new” writer has resulted in the decline of my general physical and mental health. The amount of research and basic clicking/running around one has to do is enormous. I have gotten into the habit of not bathing or sleeping. I have also stopped exercising. Because guidelines vary, submitting to a single publisher, even via email, would take at least an hour, though in reality it would be several AT LEAST because it is necessary to acquaint yourself with their aesthetic before venturing, or before selecting which pieces to revise and submit, if you decide that you should at all. One hour is a great understatement. I’m tired. I haven’t submitted to a huge number of places, and I would be amazed to hear back from even one, given the absolute greenness of my career. Statistically, since my writing doesn’t have a very specific niche, it is more difficult to find smaller publishers who would be a good fit, (but this seems to be generally a smart way to go about establishing yourself in the print world).
I don’t know how other writers do it. I’ve barely begun, and I’m already sick of it. I dislike the process and the waiting, and the time drained that I could have spent reading or actually writing. Maybe I’m simply not an efficient person. On top of all other daily obligations, many of which I have been neglecting, it is impossible to juggle writing + reading + systematic submission. I’ve been trying to go for one submission a day, and one poem a day (just for this month), in addition to some school things and other projects, and I think I’ve just lost a few years off my lifespan due to eating terrible food, not moving, and not sleeping, because I can’t seem to do anything in a rational and comfortable way.
I’m tired of even thinking about it. Maybe I don’t need to. Maybe I shouldn’t even be thinking about it, since I haven’t been a serious writer for that long. Plus, I really don’t think my writing fits in anywhere, and I can’t fool myself into thinking that I can be objective about my own writing, and maybe it’s just not good enough yet. Also, I think I’m crazy, because I haven’t heard back from 90+% of the publishers yet. And two new publishers already like me (see archive: news or my website/yay thanks popserial and PSGB) So what the hell am I freaking out about. FREAK OUT.
Anyway. In an ideal world, I would be able to hand out my published books for free to people who would care to read them. I don’t care about making money or being well known. I would like for interested people, however few or many, to enjoy my work, and I would like to participate in creative conversation. Well, if I get my hands on funds, I think I might do just that. If I think I have something complete and neat and ready (which I do not, right now), then I will offer it for free to the world. After I blow some cash on making it look nice and published. Payment optional. I’m going to leave chapbooks in random places around town and have free downloads. Since I have no interest in marketing in any way, my dreams in this area are very small, like rat droppings.
So, my plan for the rest of the month is to stop freaking out, and spend my time on more meaningful things. I will think about how to survive later. I’m going to take a shower. And read.