The more I publish, the more I come to understand the grand deceit that has been publishing in America for lo these many decades. I don't know that the roots of publishing are really any less rusty or rotten, but I know how it came to be the travesty it has become. It's the real American Way . . .
This is how we work. I love my country, don't get me wrong. There are just things that need changing about the way we act, react, create and dream. Somewhere along the way, important things got shoved aside in the interest of money, fame, and more money.
Consider the following scenario. A book is written. Someone finds it—say a famous someone, like Johnny Depp, or President Obama, or even Snoop Dogg. Doesn't matter. That person loves the book for whatever reason, and they start talking about it. They show it off. Suddenly the book is the hottest property in the country, flying off the shelves, YouTube videos, a million plus fans on Facebook, and all the NYC publishers circling like starving dogs looking for some new big thing to add to their aging cadre of cash cows—bidding obscene amounts of money to control the “Next Big Thing.”
This is business. This is what has become of creativity in the fast lane. But this is only the start. Once that book starts to take over, the first thing that happens is that the author will be sucked into the vortex. There will be follow-ons, appearances, a movie, Barbie and Ken dolls decked out as the protagonists, and any hope of moving on to something new—possibly what the artist wants to pursue—is lost in the melee that follows.
Meanwhile, out in the world, a million authors who either don't trust their talent, or really only want to be able to say they are writers, will copy the story. They will bend it,...