25 April, 2007

My status as a hack



I did throw stones at the "My Beloved Monster" dude, frankly because I don't like the notion of Yet Another Pity Circle Jerk Book. Not because he's a bad person, because I don't like his daughter, or whatever. In fact, I find it interesting. I'm just not about to go and read another one of those books. And, when I originally wrote that, I said "there, I've thrown a stone, somebody's going to come along and eviscerate me." Furthermore, I misspelled loathsome. So, my mistake. I expected the complaints, either from him or somebody who adores him (he has groupies!). It happened. No surprise there. I'm not sure why somebody would respond that I am a "hack," however. I've stated numerous times that I keep this weblog for two reasons.

  • I live in Virginia, and my family is scattered throughout California, Minnesota, Taiwan, and other places I don't have a lot of contact with. My friends are in even more places than that, and some of them I have almost no interaction with whatsoever, except via the internet. This means I get emails from them saying "hey, I haven't heard from you in x weeks, what have you been up to?" Now most of them read this via RSS or even manually. I no longer have to type up these enormous diatribes about the content of my lungs or insomnia or whether and where I am working. This is for them, and because I am lazy.
  • I am in fact writing a book. Books, even. And they're all collected in a little pile, and I tend to them lovingly, when I have time and inspiration. As I've said before, when I write a story like Sharks, it's very hard for me to empathize and "get back into" the frame of mind I was in when I started writing it. So I keep a trail of breadcrumbs for myself here. I can go way back, to 2003, before I had actually started writing, and see what was going on in my mind back then. There are so many half-opened, half-written books there that I can't help but to get distracted or lost when I context-switch between them. The readership of this page is actually so low, I don't mind it being public. That may change in the future, but for now, it's a fun experiment. For me.
What reminded me I needed to post this (I had a draft sitting around) was Scalzi's similar post recently. Quoting,

Which means, of course, that this site is always egocentric, not just sometimes. I'm happy the site entertains the lot of you, really I am, and I'm generally fond of you all in that Internetty way. But at the end of the day, it's more important that the site entertains me. If I decided to put ads on the site, I could make a lot of money from it, but then I would have to start worrying about maximizing returns every damn time I wrote rather than writing what interests me. If I just wrote about politics, or tech, or whatever, I could probably get more people coming in -- single-topic sites are the ones that get the most traffic, as a cursory glance at Technorati's Top 100 makes perfectly clear. But then I would be bored out of my skull. And this is exists in large part so I won't be bored out of my skull.

Anyways, this should serve as fair warning. You're either here because you're a friend of mine or family and find me interesting enough to read this drivel (or I've begged you to not make me repeat it), or you're here because I'm an unpublished hack of a writer (and this doesn't bother me). Let me swim a little in my hackishness for a second, and quote myself:

Strange. They don't know what I'm writing, other than it's fiction. And those that have said they'd like to read the book, well, depending on how well you know me, you might not like to read 120,000 words that came out of my head. I'm not writing this book for anyone but me. If it gets published, hooray, that's great. I'll never get rich, and you can't make a movie out of it because it is just so brooding, sullen, and mean. I can self-publish, and put a copy of my book on my shelf. And that will be good enough for me.

Hopefully this clears that bit up.

(as a post script, looks like the Monster guy got himself published. congratulations. you sure do got a purdy mouth....)

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