Tuesday, March 1, 2011


When my literary agent and friend said. "We'll shoot your manuscript, and get it onto a memory card," I was stunned.

Selling books so they could be read on a Sony Reader, or on Amazon's Kindle was, as of two years ago, the new way my agent was going to be selling novels.

I gnashed my teeth, sulked, had a real snit-fit. To me a "kindle" was kindling -- sticks of wood that you put together in order to start a good fire.

Having experienced the feeling of becoming a "has-been" in the dance world, I felt I was about to become a "has-been" writer. I found a website designer though my good PR friend Sue, who introduced me to Website designer, Fran. With Fran's help and her knowledge of the Internet, I published my 5 unpublished novels on The Readery. com, my Website, where readers are downloading and reading my novels for free.

Whoopee -- 159 000 people have downloaded chapters of my books. People are reading my books and now ... well, now I write posts for my blog.

My logic: if you make jewelry you need people to buy it and wear it. If you write books, you need to have people you don't know, (not friends or relatives), read them.

Facts about the state of the book business: Borders, the second largest bookstore chain in the U.S., recently filed for bankruptcy; Barnes And Noble now has fewer stores, and their stores now have a "Nook." . The Nook is a reader like the Kindle.

Many literary agents have quit. Becoming a "published author" is even tougher than "making it" as an actor. Every year as population increases, there are more would-be actors, and many more would-be writers.

You can "self publish" and promote your own book. You or an agent can send your book to various publishers and it might be bought and published, but being a "successful" writer -- a writer whose book is bought by readers is a matter of luck -- of being in tune with the times and at the same time, being special -- different -- weird, unusual, outrageous, super-shocking -- being, perhaps, something in the freaky sex department.

So ... "Hurray for Jeff Bezos, Amazon's CEO, for creating the Kindle, which has spawned the Nook, and other tablet book readers.

If you, who are reading this, are a writer who's hoping, dreaming, planning, outlining, working on a book, do not let Kindles, Nooks, the over-crowded world, too many writers, up-tight publishers, or agent distract you. Don't use any of these realities as a reason for not writing.

Write, then contemplate where and how to sell what you've written.. Writing is fun -- an art, that transforms ideas/thoughts/experiences/research/knowledge/personal experience, and who YOU ARE, into a comprehensible form that affects others.

Be brave. Be and do what you want to do.

Ever heard the phrase -- don't bite off your nose to spite your face? Absorb the bad and the good of whatever the trend is. You need your nose to breathe, while you are writing.


Linda Phillips said...

I just emailed this to a dear friend who is a writer to get her take on it. Thanks Em!

Carola said...

Evidently the technology for getting the right format for the Kindle isn't easy. I have a friend who is a self-published print author who just had a difficult time putting her books on Kindle. But they're on now!