Saturday, November 2, 2013

Writers are NOT Rock Stars

Writers are not rock stars.
(unless you are a rock star who has written a book. Then you would be a rock star who is a writer.) (I had to make that point for my buddy, Ray.)
I say this because I have met some writers who have egos that are on the level of major rock stars. I mean huge! I just don't get it. And the funniest part, some of the most egotistical writers are the ones at the earliest stages of their careers. Like they just got signed to an agent, or they only have a few books out. It blows my mind.

I always stress how important it is for writers to never stop helping each other. No matter what stage your career is in. Especially, if you just got signed to an agent. THAT is when you should be helping your fellow authors out the most. That is when you should be the most humble. You won the lottery, show some respect, put the right energy out into the universe… because the universe is watching.
I have been writing and working with publishers for many years. I always answer emails/fb posts/tweets from fans of my work. I also ALWAYS strive to help out other authors, regardless of what stage they are in. Just last year, I helped a writer buddy of mine learn how to properly send queries. Afterwards, she was quickly signed to an agent. Yes, an agent I would have liked to be signed with. I was very happy for her and sent her an emails saying so…

She never replied.
Funny enough, that agent later asked me to follow my buddy's new FB author page. I told her, yeah, we are friends already… I never mentioned to the agent that I taught her new client how to write a good query. 

Sadly, that buddy has moved on. Left me behind. No longer tweets or emails to me. Why? No idea. Sad huh? She forgot that the universe is watching.
Every once in a while, I will communicate with another author and will be amazed by how they act. I have been told I cannot be a part of writers groups because I do not have an agent, I am not published at a major publisher, and… yes… because I am a guy. I had no idea there were so many "ladies only" writers groups. I offered to be a male mascot to one. Not even a LOL in response. Sad.

I shrug it off. I carry on… and then weeks later I might end up chatting with that one author who thinks they are the Queen of England… Wow. Oh my God! You all probably know one like this.
Yep, it can really feel like high school all over again. That is why I stress to new writers… do not forget where you came from and never stop helping each other out. Being an author does not need to be any more difficult than it already is. It should not be a "have" and "have not" thing. We are all artists. We are all people. Can't we all just get along? J

But seriously, it happens. Bad eggs out there. This happened to me a few years ago. And it hurt. Like I said, it's all so sadly on a level of high school mentality.
When my first fantasy book came out, I had a reviewer email me for a copy. I sent one to him and we started emailing back and forth. He loved the book. We talked about it in great depth. Then we started talking about schooling, family, friends, martial arts, video games…. we became friends. Friends. Then this reviewer met some "more famous" authors. I will not name names. But my friend dumped me for those other authors. *sigh* LOL. Yeah, I laugh, because it's just so freaking lame. He left my lunch table to go sit with the cooler kids. And now those cool kids are the only people he talks with on social media platforms.

When my second book came out, I sent him one... and he never returned my emails. He just plain ignored me. I thought we were friends. I really did. That's cold, dude.
This taught me an important lesson, and fortified the feelings I already had. When you climb the ladder of success you never forget your friends. You never forget those people who helped you out at the bottom. You never climb over others to get to the top.

Writers are not  rock stars. They are artists. They are people. And most importantly a writer must remember that their friends, family and fans are all people. You want to succeed as an author? You must remember that. You will never sell books if you are a close-minded jerk.
Peace and love. Peace and love. :)

Kevin James Breaux

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