Attending a writers’ conference last week, I was reminded of the importance of respecting the knowledge and skills of the experts in a field. Allow me to explain…
I started the day nervous about the pitches I’d be making to a couple of literary agents but otherwise pretty confident in my own grasp of the writing game. I understood the roles of writer / agent / editor, the paths to acceptance of a manuscript for publication, my own responsibilities in the process of bringing a book to market, etc.
Right? I got this, right?
Turns out, not so much.
Turns out, the publishing world has changed while I’ve been off living my life and writing my little blog posts. And if I am to be successful – assuming that ‘successful’ means a book published so that real people can read it and then does well enough to make my next submission attractive to the people who decide whether I get another turn – it behooves me to learn a few things. Facts of life, you might say. Things like the tighter word count limitations, platform, shifting genres, methods of submission… the list goes on.
Never fear, I will learn these things and more. Because when you come into someone else’s world intent on fitting in the smart money is on, you know, fitting in.
I think this is a lesson that needs to be learned, and soon, very soon, by the new guy in the Oval Office. He came there assuming that what he already knew would be enough and further, that his presumed great cachet of being this business mogul with a popular TV show and a series of trophy wives (as ever, more a statement about the man than the women he married) would make all bow down before him. He came to the halls of power with neither a road map nor a trustworthy guide. He brought lackeys and minions and miscreants to a team sport.
He needs to learn the lessons of the field.