Today I got an email me telling me that someone mentioned my novel, Against a Rock, in a review on Amazon.com about The Burning Life, an official EVE novel released recently. Basically he said that people are better off reading my book. This put me in a good mood all day today, to know that the quality of my writing can hold its own against at least some professionally published works. I don’t know if I’m actually going to read The Burning Life… I suppose I should since I’m technically still writing EVE fiction, but judging from the fact that it hasn’t gotten any decent reader reviews on Amazon, and the fact that the first official EVE novel, Empyrean Age was pretty bad, it’s probably not gonna be worth it.
There’s a couple anarchistic viewpoints to be had from this. I feel significantly more motivated to sit down and write now since getting that free plug on Amazon. It’s amazing how far a little appreciation can go to getting a job done. It seems crazy that appreciation could replace currency as our primary motivation for getting things done, but once you get into something that you’re passionate about but doesn’t really make any money, like writing, art, open-source programming, running a website, volunteering, or political activism, you should be able to see how easily you can be motivated to accomplish things with little more than a sense that you’re having a positive affect on other people’s lives. Without currency I would certainly still be writing and programming.
The other thing I take from this is the familiar feeling that the better works are not being bubbled up to the top nor fairly represented. The books that get promoted are the ones by the people who know how to sell themselves, who are not always the most talented. It’s sad to know that so many talented artists have been lost in the shuffle because they didn’t know how to promote themselves or just didn’t get the right opportunity. I know that under real literary critics, Against a Rock would beat Empyrean Age and from what it sounds like, The Burning Life as well… but they’re the ones making the money.
I know this is a totally self-serving entry… perhaps this is my attempt to market myself more aggressively. Sometimes I feel I need to let my ego show a little more. 🙂