Stevie Chuckles’ Advice to New Writers
Part Three: After you’ve published
You are important. Your writing is important. You and your writing are more important than anybody else (and their crummy writing). Here are some behaviors you can embrace to accentuate your place in the writing universe.
- If your work is a novel or in an anthology, immediately go to Amazon Dot Com and post several rave reviews. If the work is in an anthology be sure and point out how it stands head and shoulders above the other shit in the book. The readers will thank you for directing them to the “good” stuff.
- If your work is published in a magazine, head over to that magazine’s online forums and do the same.
- In the event your work is reviewed unfavorably, you should immediately write letters to the reviewer, his editor, and every other possible venue to explain the reviewer’s blind idiocy and mental incompetence.
- In addition, you should think about this review ALL THE TIME, carrying around a laminated copy, so that, in any person-to-person communication you may instantly be able to discuss at great length why this person is WRONG, WRONG, WRONG! Let me stress that this is the hallmark of a truly great writer. All other activities should come second to this. Even writing.
- In the event your work is reviewed favorably, you should seize upon the least favorable thing said and publicly and privately eviscerate the reviewer for his infelicitous remark. An example: “X’s brilliantly written first novel has vibrant compelling characters and riveting action, but I would have liked a little more of the heroine’s background.” You should only remember that the reviewer HATED THE HEROINE!
- Between obsessing about bad reviews and good reviews, you need to make time to Google every mention of your story and name on the intertubes. You must track down, find out what they said, and then explain to them why they are WRONG, WRONG, WRONG.
- If you have time left over from these previous activities and you first work is a book, you must monitor the Amazon Sales Ranking every five minutes. When it spikes momentarily (because your Mom and your aunt Sylvie bought copies) you need to fire off a letter to your publisher demanding your giant royalty check.
Next time: A Word About Conventions. (To Boldly Go Where No Writer Has…)
*The above was part of my lecture at the 2008 Viable Paradise Writers workshop on Martha’s Vineyard. New writers are strongly encouraged to follow every step. It cuts down on my competition.