Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Boudinot's key to success? Publicity...

I happened upon an article in The Stranger while perusing the Web a few days ago. If you are a writer, you know the one; it has caused scandalised reactions from the writing community. It amounts to little more than outright insults dressed up as 'home truths' for a career in writing but it's one hell of a marketing ploy.

I too, like those who are not so fortunate or lucky to have the time or money to devote every moment of my life to writing, also got more than a little riled at the position of Mr Boudinot, ex MFA tutor. That said, every free second I do have goes in that direction. If I were to do as he advised my family would starve. His comments are not only ageist  but also anti-family, I was going to write sexist but there are many dads out there who write and whose financial input is earned from jobs other than writing and is required to keep the family going.

I think the majority of writers write not with the idea of fame at the forefront of their minds but because it is hard not to do so. Sure the dream lingers in the background, after all there are very few who do not want public recognition for their work. Speaking for myself, it's like an addiction or an itch I can't help but scratch. It doesn't matter if I am good at it or if is good for me, it is simply something I cannot resist. I am happy to know that my stuff gets published. I don't mind that I didn't publish for years - it doesn't mean I wasn't writing - I simply wasn't submitting. I'm not bothered that it hasn't made the top ten of anything either. Who knows, maybe one day it will.

Mr Ryan Boudinot has earned himself a lot of publicity through his article. There are many who will snap up his books now just to see what he can do now he isn't teaching or look into the Seattle City of Literature Project which he's currently involved in to see if they can confront him in person. Just for the record, I will not be one of them. My curiosity is aroused but I will not fall into his wily marketing ploy (and I live far away from Seattle). I have plenty of other books to read and more importantly, I have little enough time as it is to devote to my own project - writing.