Sunday, March 7, 2010

A Call To The Heathens. er.

Sorry. We don't do heaven and hell where I'm from. ;)

Feeling blah. You know that sinking feeling you feel when you realize you may have put your faith in the wrong person? I got that. Only it's not someone I could give a good swat upside the head and tell them to smarten up. It's just I am realizing I am admiring people who maybe, not necessarily don't deserve it, but deserve it less than I thought they did. I admire people because I see parts of myself in them, watch them succeed, and feel optimistic. And then I find out that in fact, we don't share all that much, or they don't like those parts of themselves. And that makes me feel duped. And also, disappointed. And, maybe a little bit lonely. So, I'm a bit morose today, but it really has me thinking about something.

Thanks little-miss-sunshine, for your tireless efforts on my behalf. I am always happy to provide distraction. The search continues. But for now, I would like to discuss a different search, for something else entirely.

Disclaimer: If you are a Twi-hard fan, and you feel you cannot take even one more minute of Twilight-bashing today, lest it provoke in you nonsensical rage that is defensive to the point of reducing you to irrational shrieking, it might be safer for you to skip this post. If, conversely, you are just one of those bitter, jaded haters who want to watch Stephenie Meyer/Robert Pattinson/Bella Swan/Fill In Unidentified Twilight Problem, get dragged through the mud, spit on, eaten and then puked out, I must ask you to also skip this post. I don't drink that koolaid. I much prefer serious discussions and constructive criticism. 

So. Part of this project is writing, but another part is publishing, and one of the things I am terrible at, is marketing myself. I get all stammery. So I've been looking up places to market my book, once it's published. And I came across this:

Have you been here? It's awesome. I'm sure I haven't even combed all its uses yet. Chiefly, I like how it promotes self-published and POD authors, and also, how you can find books you want, and they'll find you other, completely obscure books you might like, that you have never heard of, and tell you where to get them. Now, Hannah is a sci-fi, or as sci-fi as I'm willing to get (I hate hardcore genre purists. I cannot do one genre. I am not that dedicated to one way of thinking. I'm sorry)  so I got a little off topic, but where it asks you to list your favorite books, I did, and wound up looking through the list of fairytales and supernatural stories (totally counts. Hannah is a supernatural novel. nyeh.) And. Well.

As I've just stated, I am not one of those people who dump on Stephenie Meyer and the Twilight Saga (saga, really?) just because, hey, it's Sunday and I don't have anything to write. Because of that, I'm going to do my best to stay away from the GAPING PLOTHOLES and the general anti-female, anti-girl, anti-woman attitudes in the book (Be ye warned, Twilight fans, I cannot guarantee that I will never discuss my many and varied issues with the books, just that I promise not to do it now.) But I am a little annoyed with Meyer, because I feel she has taken something that is very precious to me. Here's the thing; There is nothing I love more than a good fairytale. A good fairytale for adults is really hard to find. Gregory Maguire does it, and Neil Gaiman does it (I don't read that much of him though, so I really can't say anything there.) Everything else is either published by a Harlequin imprint or... well. Or it's for young adults. And it looks, sounds, feels, tastes and smells exactly like Twilight. Which, I'm sorry, reads like a Harlequin, but without the naughty bits.

I suppose I shouldn't say that. Carrie Jones' Need reads like Twilight without all the gender-bias problems. House of Night from P.C. and Kristen Cast, reads more like Twilight if someone had gotten to Bella, and she'd met Edward after she'd been turned into a vampire (there's less anti-girl in that one too, though just as much boy-obsessive angst, wtf?), and if I read another review of a book that says, "Twilight Fans will love it!" I am going to vomit, for real. I will literally look that reviewer up and drive to zir house, just so I can throw up on the right pair of too-expensive shoes.

Yes, I know. Now, more than ever, books have to capitalize. They have to make money, they have to be six-figures. They are competing with, in no particular order, free TV, free online tv, blockbuster movies (which also come free, if you know where to go, I'm just saying) free youtube videos of a cat dancing on a rug and a baby playing a piano concerto, vapid and materialistic magazines which sell for much cheaper and offer a much quicker thrill, and of course, scores of sometimes incredibly well-written and insightful fanfic on the internet. Not only is it free, but it's a set of established characters that already has a fan base, it usually has a healthy dose of smut and some taboo for those too young to buy those books when their parents aren't looking, and it's totally legal. Goddess, if they didn't have the blessed Fear Of The Evil Mary-Sue to fall back on, (another rant, for another day.) safe to say, self-publishers would be making scores more money and big publishing houses would fall like the ancient Romans. So I get it, Idiot Publishers. You're tapped. You've got nothing else to go on, and TV and Movies has been pulling this crap for years and no one says anything.

Consider me saying something. Twilight has done all it can do. None of these new versions, whether they are well-written or even genuinely better than the original, (like the aforementioned Need, and the very well-written and innovative Blue Blood Series) will have that success. Fans will call them ripoffs, dissenters will call them wannabes. And potential readers and writers (both of which I am) will simultaneously not want to read anything that looks like a modern fairytale for fear of crushing disappointment, or not want to write it, for fear of being mocked as 'another one of those.' And we will all miss out.

Someone, for pity's sake, write me a fairytale. Seriously, I don't care if you're seventeen and got a C on your last English assignment and have to POD it. I will buy it. I am that desperate. I want to be able to love it again. One day, I dream of writing an adult fairytale of my own. Give me something to put in my cranial cauldron, so that I am able to do that. Don't let bitterness over what Meyer did to vampires, or fear that it's not like what's good right now, stop you. One day, possibly soon, Twilight will be done. And there will have to be something else. I'd love to be that someone else, myself. But I really wouldn't mind if it was another someone else. I just want something there, to be enjoyed, to be able to enjoy. I'm not jealous of JK Rowling for being so freaking rich and famous and now she thinks she can just go away OMG, she's totally just in it for the money and fame. I'm not jealous of Christopher Paolini just because he only got published so young because his mommy and daddy are in the business, I've written books way better than him and nobody reads them. And I am not jealous of Stephenie Meyer just because OMG she's a total Suethor, it's pathetic, people only read the books because 'omg edwards so hot!!!'"*

I just really want something to read.

*Italicized comments are not mine. They are lifted, sometimes directly, from conversations with other unpublished or self-published authors, all of whom sounded like they were more into sour grapes than anything resembling real criticism. What the hell? Were we not readers first? I'm just saying.


  1. Hello! Found you by way of a mention on Metafandom, and I really liked what I read. I hope you don't mind if I follow along?

    You write that you enjoy adult fairytales--I don't have any for your personally, but have you tried any of the following?

    Robin McKinley's Deerskin or Outlaws of Sherwood
    Patricia McKillip, especially Winter Rose, Forgotten Beasts of Eld, Alphabet of Thorns.
    Meredith Ann Pierce, Darkangel Trilogy

    I can go on, but I don't want to turn this into listing if you have and I'm just being useless.

    But thank you very much for the content, I've enjoyed (and been impressed by) what I've read so far.

  2. Thanks! I'll look those up! so glad you're enjoying and following along. I'm still in the stage where "I have readers!" is a huge shock for me, so a kind word goes a long way. anyway, thanks for the list, feel free to add to it.