Today I want to address an article that Anne Rice’s Facebook page brought to my attention. Read it here!
For those of you who don’t want to read it, no worries! I’ll sum it up here.
Basically, a ‘professional’ writer woke up on the bitter side of the publishing bed today. Or whatever day she wrote this. In the article she states that, if JK Rowling truly cares about writing, she would stop.
So, apparently JK Rowling is monopolizing the adult fiction scene, and ruining other authors’ chances at higher sales and fame. But, instead of praising Rowling for her marketability and success at creating a brand name, instead of wondering how to recreate this success in her writing and publishing, this writer takes the easy way out.
She thinks Rowling should stop publishing.
“By all means keep writing for kids, or for your personal pleasure – I would never deny anyone that – but when it comes to the adult market you’ve had your turn.”
I think this is preposterous. She is literally asking the competition to stand aside. Because that ever works.
Would you ask Stephen King to “stop publishing” because he’s published so much already? Or Brandon Sanderson? Or James Patterson? What right do you have to ask someone to stop doing anything? Let alone an author who’s sales make you look like a joke.
There are a couple things that do need to be taken under consideration, however.
This ‘writer’ is based in the UK. So, while I barely knew JK Rowling was writing adult fiction, I’m sure the marketing across the pond was pretty extensive.
Also, what does the writer of this article read? Does she only read adult general fiction? Or just crime novels? If that’s the case, then yes, the shelves would seem inundated with Rowling’s new works. But that’s because of her limited view of the shelves.
I know that I had no problem finding new books, or authors, over in the Sci-Fi/Fantasy section. In fact, outside of the “What’s New” shelves cloistered in the bookshop’s center aisle, I was hard pressed to find The Casual Vacancy’. I didn’t even know about ‘Cuckoo’s Calling’ until this article was brought to my attention.
But, again, I’m on the opposite side of a nation an entire ocean away from the world she’s living in.
But, I still have to ask, what bookstores is she frequenting? Because, if it’s just the big name franchises, then yes, Rowling’s novels will be pushed. Hard. But, if you’re frequenting your local, small shop, you’ll see a small stand suggesting just released novels. Maybe Rowling’s will be there. Maybe not. It all depends on how much it costs the bookseller.
So, dear professional writer, maybe it’s not Ms. Rowling’s fault that you find her book at every turn. Maybe, just maybe, you should try broadening your reading horizons, as well as giving indie booksellers a chance.
Also, if you ever want to be HALF as successful as good old J.K., you should be taking notes, not whining about how unfair the market is.
What do you guys think? Should popular, successful authors bow out to those of us still struggling?
I don’t think so. I think that would stifle a lot of writers. Firstly, it wouldn’t be so hard to get noticed, because there wouldn’t be giants engulfing us in their epic sales’ shadows. That would take some of the joy out of getting published. At least for me.
Also, it would terrify me. You wouldn’t want to get too good at your craft, because you’d get too popular and have to give it up in order to make way for the newbies.
It’s just not realistic. It’s not how life works, in any way. So, I hope Ms. Rowling doesn’t let this writer’s article on HuffPost have any sway on her writing.
It would be a shame.