I Stand Admonished
I give up. I throw in the towel; I hang up my spurs; I call it a day. Yippee!
I’m free to use these clichés again because I quit as a professional writer!! That’s right. Now I can use all the exclamation points I please!!! Take that you $80-per-hour editor!!!!!!
I’m so tired of searching for my voice, eliminating adverbs, and devising ear-tickling phrases—all to the yawn of an indifferent universe. Who needs it?
“Is my point of view consistent?”
“Am I showing and not telling?”
Yada yada yada.
Look. I’m a sixty-five years old, okay? I’m on Medicare, happy in my dotage, have a loving wife and enough money to carry me to the grave. Why am I banging my bald head against a brick wall?
Should I admit it? Okay. I’m a card-carrying curmudgeon. I hate social media, blogs, tech-talk, and pop culture. There are plenty of sparkling, thought-provoking, and un-read books to fill my remaining days with bliss. Why should I suffer rejection after rejection?
One publisher said, “This writing is good but lacks literary quality.” What? You mean it’s not Huckleberry Finn?
Another said, “We love your manuscript, but we are not publishing memoirs at this time.” Note to publisher: I checked. Your last three titles were memoirs.
I shouldn’t complain though. At least those two publishers took the trouble to respond. Twenty others must have repurposed my stamped envelope.
And remind me again. What was that definition of insanity?
I do take pleasure in writing, but I don’t want to build no stupid platform. I don’t want to gather a tribe around me. What am I, an Indian chief? I know, I know. My semi-well-written memoir will melt away in the bowels of the slush pile. My writing coach tells me there are three questions every author must answer. I’m flipping them into my answer. “So what?" "Who cares?” and “Why me [Lord]?”
Here’s an irony for you. I strove to improve my writing by reading more widely. But the more I read, the more inadequate my own writing appeared. There are so many gifted writers out there with so many well-crafted words. I’m told Amazon uploads 3,500 creative works each day. That’s over a million books per year! Earth to Chris: What makes you think your piddling contribution will splash more than peeing into the ocean.
In my quiet time I’ve been consulting with a writer named King Solomon, the preacher of Ecclesiastes. He tells me all my book-writing business is vanity and vexation of spirit. “My son,” he says, “be admonished: of making many books there is no end; and much study is a weariness of the flesh.”
I get it. I stand admonished. I hereby renounce the writing of Christian books. Let others “shape souls through the creative word”. I’m outta here!
But hold on. . . Why am I publishing this rant on my blog?