Chairman Bao is a Shih Tzu. We travel a lot. I drive. He watches. We've logged at least 10,000 miles and he's never once said, Sweetheart, don't you think you should stop and ask someone?

Sunday, May 11, 2008

When Bao wants to read a good book, he shoves his nose into the big rosemary bush where all the other dogs pee. And when he's done, he always lifts his legs and leaves a comment of his own. No genres. No literary agents. No publishers. Bao -- and the other dogs in our neighborhood -- can express themselves at length, whenever they like.

I don't know about you, but I'm finding it increasingly difficult to find good books to read. I like literary fiction, and there isn't much of it about, these days. The big publishers aren't publishing it, because literary novels aren't usually blockbusters. And the smaller presses may be publishing it, but they don't have big advertising budgets so how is the reader supposed to know it's even out there?

Enormous changes that have engulfed and transformed the publishing industry. Six multinationals control most of it, and four of them aren't even American-owned. Editors don't edit, anymore. They market. It's not about books. It's about the bottom line.

I shouldn't complain. I'm luckier than most. I've found another agent, and I'm ecstatic. You guys may actually get to read my novel, some day. But you know what? It shouldn't be this hard to submit a manuscript to an editor. I'm not saying they should publish everything. But they ought to at least be willing to look at whatever is submitted, whether it's agented or not. Not so long ago, that was the American way. And you could always find a good book to read.


Blogger Betty said...

When you consider some of the drivel they DO publish these days, you'd think they'd be reading everything that comes their way to find something good.

4:02 PM

Blogger Dogwalkmusings said...


4:39 PM

Blogger Miss Poppy said...

For one reason or another, I always seem to avoid buying that one book that gets the most attention in the newspapers... and I have never been dissappointed ! -Chris

11:58 PM


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