Monday, March 5, 2012
More thoughts on gatekeepers
So if you want a Steampunk Zombie Reluctant Messiah Romance, it's out there.
This makes me wonder what will happen to genres. I think they will shatter into a million subcategories and overlap and merge and re-shatter until anything goes. Or maybe we're already there.
Another thing that the gatekeepers (and I mean agents, editors and publishing houses) were doing was to give us the expectation of smooth prose. These books by new authors (and I include myself in there!) are often written with more passion than polish. Word choice and word usage, repeated phrases and awkward phrasing make the reading experience a bit choppy. I keep finding things that I would highlight in my critique group to be rewritten.
Sometimes I can't get past the words to get into the story. At that point I give up. And I wonder if the author would want the feedback from me.
When I was dabbling in script writing, I was on a peer review site. After reviewing a bunch of them, I realized there are certain kinds that I just don't get. I'd read through a script and be left baffled. But there are books and movies that don't appeal, and that's fine. Like my Uncle John used to say - that's what makes horse racing. So I stopped reviewing anything that didn't make sense to me. I didn't think it was fair.
I wonder how this will all shake out audience-wise. Now that we have a gazillion new authors in every shade of every genre there is, do we all get an audience of 16.32 people?