Monday, May 09, 2005

Three branches of publishing

I will be making a governmental analogy. Note to readers: I hate government. I didn't like it either time I took it. No snickering. Not twice in one year. Once in high school (the teacher and I were incompatible). Once in college (my teacher was a U.S. representative's wife). For those of you who love it, congratulations. I find it fascinating in a distant way. If I don't have to be hands-on, I like it more.

There are three branches of publishing. These are similar to the three branches of government. Bear with me please.
The government has Executive (Publishing), Legislative (Writers), and Judicial (Readers). They keep a series of checks and balances so that one branch does not have a monopoly over the whole shebang.
Each branch has a cabinet. These are the people who work within the branch to help the branch function. People in the branches could include: editors, agents, beta readers, friends, and family.
These three branches must work together to keep a smooth flow. Each branch has its own goals and priorities. And there will be conflict. Aye. Plenty of it. And there will be shifts of balance.
But the important item is to work together. Any divisiveness will be magnified and reported on with glee.

There have been several instances within the past month which have really brought this whole entity home. We, as parts of the publishing industry, have magnified the Great Literary Divide.
Now, I'm not saying this goes for everyone. Clearly there are moments of support. I have found those as well. But I want to focus on the not-so-pretty for a moment.
Publishers, writers, and readers must work together. There has been talk of professional snafus. "Cliquey" behavior. Disrespect. And rudeness.
There is no need.
If you're one of those people that feel the need to be unhappy, then feel free. But don't shovel your BS to the masses as truth. Not only will you be "outed", you will cut your own professional throat. Word spreads. Fast.
A word on "cliquey" behavior. There are some sites which I prefer not to comment on because it almost feels that if I don't know the magic word, I may as well be invisible anyway.
BUT...there are SEVERAL sites which are maintained by several authors, publishers, and readers which I LOVE!
Romancing the Blog and Writeminded are two. Don't be put off!
How are we going to grow as an industry if we are too intimidated to speak up? We won't. We will stagnate. And all three branches will wither and die.


Jill said...

Loved this post! PS I got an A in government class but do not be fooled, I hated it.

Dana said...

Very good post! I can't stand cliques. It's so high school.

chryscat said...

Thank you, ladies.
Drawing the similarities between something I love so much and something I loathe was interesting. But I think it's apt.

username said...

Delightful post!

Updated my blog with my day. It was hellacious. *g* I'm ready to drag to bed now. LOL

Amy said...

Hey, Crystal, thanks for the kind words on our blog!

I hated government too but like your comparison. :) Well said.

Allison Brennan said...

Wow, I feel honored that you like our blog! I love my CPs, and we are four totally different people, which proves that democracy still thrives *g*

VERY apt analogy!

(BTW, I did very well in gov't and in fact worked in the legislature for many, many years, but that doesn't mean I like it!)

Steph T. said...

*clapping* Well said.*g*

I've found most of the people in blogland to be pretty responsive to newcomer's comments - sometimes the hardest part is just taking that first step and posting.

chryscat said...

Thank you *bowing*

Writeminded ladies: Yes, I love the blog. It's user-friendly. Informative. Entertaining. All good stuff.


Karen Anne Mitchell said...

I enjoyed this post. It brought to mind a column from over at Strange Horizons on the publishing industry from the perspective of the reader. Here's the link:

Also, thanks for your kind words. My e-mail response bounced back, so a public thanks is in order.