Friday, October 29, 2010

The Illusion of Success

THE LITERARY WORLD TODAY is a place where everyone wins. It's like high school athletic competitions where every single participant receives a ribbon. Today everyone can get their febrile poem or story published someplace. This, actually, is all that 99.9% of current writers want-- the illusion of success instead of the reality. Every writer puts after their story or poem a long list of credits at this unread lit journal or that unread online lit site. Credentials layered upon credentials, all meaningless. Chests of medals worn by Communist bureaucrats, signifying nothing.

Meanwhile, as this takes place, a tiny well-connected clique gobble up the largesse, grants, advances, awards, and publicity which truly are important in deciding the direction of literary culture in this country.

Everyone is happy.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

So 999 of every thousand writers is deluded? And the thousandth is the undeserving recipient of cash and acclaim? How grim.

King said...

It depends on the writer's goals. No doubt most are hobbyists, happy to be able to show their work anyplace.
For those who want more, however, it makes no sense to accept the current literary system-- and certainly not to "play by the rules."