This past week saw the launch of my debut novel, “Chocolate for Breakfast.” (As if you didn’t already know!) I’ve been touched by all the love and support, and genuinely moved by the positive reaction to this novel. You can download it here. A few people asked for the paper version – unfortunately, I’d blown my budget on editing, formatting, and the gorgeous book cover, so there’s only the digital download available. But even without a Kindle or an iPad, you can read the book on your computer using the free Kindle app. Meanwhile, I am keeping busy by working on my second book, which is totally unrelated to this one. I’ve indulged in a bit of Swiss chocolate (!). I’m also reading a manuscript for a writer pal – this is new to me, but I want to do what I can to help other writers, as so many established authors have inspired and assisted me.
Speaking of established writers, I read an interview with author Sue Grafton (“V is for Vengeance”). You can read the interview here. I’ll admit, I’ve never read any of her books, although I think this latest “V” book is somewhere in my house. During the interview, she was asked if she had any advice for young writers (hey, I’m not young, but I am a new writer). She said, “Don’t self-publish. That’s as good as admitting you’re too lazy to do the hard work.” Excuse me?? The interviewer, to her credit, mentioned the indie success of John Locke, and Grafton back pedaled slightly, but retained her belief that self-publishing is a short cut and self-published books are often amateurish. So, anyone interested in a never-read paperback version of “V is for Vengeance?”
Here’s another one. The Guardian (UK) posted a story this past week claiming that “Fifty Shades of Gray” has surpassed all other book sales. You can read that article here. I read all three books in the trilogy, and no, not because I wanted to read “mommy porn.” As a writer, I wanted to know what put E.L. James on the bestseller list. And yes, I’ve voiced my own opinion that the writing was not very good. In fact, Erika Leonard, who is E.L. James, stated in an interview on The Today Show last spring that she is not a great writer. Does it matter? She has ruled the bestseller lists for months. And some writers can’t stand it. The vitriolic rants against E.L. James are unbelievable, especially coming from writers. They want her off – OFF! – those bestseller lists, as if she has no right to be there. They’ve started campaigns to bring her down. Are they offended by the genre, the writing? Or perhaps that she has achieved a success they can only dream of?
In the words of another artist who has received her share of peer scorn and ridicule, “Why do you have to be so mean?”