I should be published by now!
Publishing a book is a journey fraught with bad advice, rejection and sparks of hope that keep one pushing forward. One of my pet peeves is people who self-publish for the wrong reasons, then show up at family/friend gatherings and force everyone into buying their book -- always introducing themselves as a published author. I have yet to meet one published author who ever introduced themselves that way and I've been in the business for a good ten years. That title is relegated to the self-published. My father has such a friend, and I told my dad to take one of my books from here on out, and do what the man does, "Here's the new one, you owe me $14."
That's pride people. I know, people don't want to hear it. Their work is just too brilliant for the publisher to get. It couldn't wait for the publishing channels, etc.
I'll tell you why I don't respect it. It's not that I think I'm so hot and only the "great" are relegated to publication. Far from it, there's a lot of crap out there, and I'm the first to admit it. Why did THIS get published is a question we've all asked ourselves as we threw a book across the room. And chances are, I've written at least one of those books.
BUT, I worked hard to get published. I learned craft. I learned to edit, and I learned to understand what was missing in my work to make it unpublishable. In short, I had to take my own ideas of brilliance and completely maim them. Now, there are people with platforms who SHOULD self publish and pocket the money -- maybe they speak, maybe they work at the top of an organization. This is rarely true of a novel, however. Even some of the biggest speakers have written some really awful novels because of pride.
The other thing I notice is that these authors rarely will publish with a smaller house to work their way up. Their work is beyond that, and they laugh at the thought of their masterpiece going for small potatoes. Again, that's pride. If you're called to write, you go where God leads you and trust His timing -- and trust me on this, I am NOT happy with God's timing about my living situation, so I know He often takes His time.
So...when you think that it's embarrassing to introduce yourself as a struggling writer who is working towards publication? Think of this post and the alternative of introducing yourself as a "published author". Kristin