In thinking about topics for this blog post, I started looking at what is happening in the publishing industry. Apple lost their collusion and price-fixing case, the Yankees are languishing in fourth place in the American League East, summer hours should be well in session on Fridays in the New York Publishing scene, and the mid-summer slow-down is well under way across the publishing business as a whole. Nothing hit me as a topic that would really stand out from the crowd, until I thought about a conversation I had with my mother a few weeks ago.
Mom Knows Best
My mom had been going through some of my papers from when I was in elementary school and reminded me of one that I wrote when I was in the third grade. I would imagine the assignment had to do with visualizing a storyline with plot build-up, characters, and a final conclusion. My choice of story centered around 3 intrepid characters battling the forces arrayed against them to stop a flood that would ultimately prove fatal if allowed to occur without any incidence of prevention. The title of my piece: “A Day in the Life of a Rice Krispie!” Sheer brilliance at its core, the title tells you everything you need to know. There will be laughter, remorse, vindictiveness, and then, of course, hunger leading to Snap, Crackle, and Pop.
Why is it so easy to come up with topics when we are young, and much harder to think of things we want to say when we are so much better equipped to say them? Does imagination rest exclusively in the mind of an 8-year old who must have had a good breakfast that morning? No, I think the reasoning is much deeper than that. Someone who has a love of writing must enjoy reading their own writing and then they will have little or no personal defeat if someone else decides they do not like it. Writing is an art, no different from painting, composing music, sculpting, or architecture. Putting words to electronic medium is a canvas that needs to be fostered and nurtured throughout a life.
Blog, Blog and Blog Some More
The new medium of blogging has made the writing process all the more interesting in this day and age. Now someone can riff on any topic they deem important, and find a niche audience immediately of like-minded individuals. Forty-five years ago when I wrote that little story, there was no way to foretell that eventually I would be able to share a small slice of third grade, with a multitude of readers that I will never meet or see in the course of my daily travels.
I make this suggestion because blogging would seem to be a unique tool to see if there is an audience for your literary tome. Instead of writing a book and going through all the motions to have it published as an e-book, or a print book, put excerpts on a blog as separate posts, and see if you get a response. You can set up a survey page to see if there are questions on the topic, this would be a way to gauge the probable interest and future sales when you do publish. Also, writings on a blog are copyrighted and cannot be pulled and re-used without express permission of the original writer. Re-blogging leaves all of the original author information intact in the piece and does not infringe on the author’s copyrighted materials for usage.
Survey Suggestion to Save Publishing Money…
One suggested route for being published, write a blog and see if anyone picks up on it and finds you. Watch the movie “Julie and Julia”, I have to admit that this movie had a big influence on me writing and moving forward with this blog. It may work that way for you as well. Find your passion, blog on it, and see if the followers come running. It may save you some full-on publishing expenses in the long run!
I do not believe there will be a movie made based on my blog…
Follow me on Twitter at: Donald Schmidt@thebookkahuna