Sunday, August 17, 2008

(Because I am made of bitch) Writer types I have encountered

The internet is a wonderful thing. It wasn't that long ago that I had no computer and wrote only on paper. I didn't know any other people who wanted to be writers, but I did write, gubbins and tosh, and knew that it wasn't good enough for anything or anyone, so did nothing with it.

Then I got a pc, and dial up. A friend told me about Pulp Net, and I subbed some stuff to them. Hurray!

I now have a MacBook ♥ and Broadband. I "know" writers that I have met online. Vanessa Gebbie introduced me to her online writers forum, I have found writers through blogging, other writers have contacted me, I have contacted them, I have "met" some cool bananas in Zoetrope, "know" some super cool people from America, India, Israel, U.K. I have met other writers in person. It is fabulous to talk writing, get support and understanding, share knowledge and information.

BUT

You know, I am getting a bit fucked off with people schmoozing because they think I can do something for them. I understand that people suck arse, but really, no matter how cynical I get I still seem to assume that basically all people are good, and all people will treat others as they would wish to be treated themselves. Sigh. So, yeah, anyway:

Writer types I have encountered.

1) The hello-I'm-a-writer-too-let's-meet-up-for-coffee-oh-I-have-a-book-out-any-day-now-and-you-work-in-a-huge-bookshop-that-won't-be-stocking-my-book-unless-oh-would-you-could-you-that's-so-great/so-shitty-you'll-never-hear-from-me-again person

2) Oh, you write so well, I do like you so much, can I help you at all? Maybe we could swap work? You review for Pulp Net, WBQ and The Short Review don't you? Oh...well...maybe...?

3) I will suck you dry of every bit of writing knowledge that you have learned, and then I will move on to someone fresh for I am vampire writer here to feed.

4) I am a writer who knows how it can sting and be lonely, and I will sympathise and empathise and encourage. I will ask for nothing in return.

5) I hate to ask, but is there any chance you could...?
You are so helpful, dependable, ace.
(Repeat over and over.)

6) I am very cool. Who are you again? What is it you want?

7)

(By the way, 7 was the writer who doesn't even do you the basic courtesy of replying to you)

8) Ah, writers, yes, we're all nuts aren't we? Bonkers! Ha ha ha. Crazy whacky! Ha ha...(EEEEEEEK!)

More when I think of them. I think this may be the first in an occasional series!

9) Women Rule Writer has come up with a hum dinger of a number 9:
Oooh, what about the 'Little Old Me' writers? They assume a position of great innocence about their talent, then let you do all their PR for them, while skimming off the cream of your ideas, contacts etc. Do I sound like I've been stung? I have. Twice! Argh!


I know someone just like that, my sympathy WRW.

13 comments:

pierre l said...

Conversely, you have at least one long-time loyal reader who eagerly reads everything you produce (including his recently arrived copy of "see you next tuesday second coming", which is lovely). He intends to come and meet you on the 24th of September.

Tania Hershman said...

Dearest Sara - I am so sorry, I know I am Number 6 (If you insert "super" before "cool",) and I will try much harder not to be, but it's difficult, being so cool and still interacting with the "normal" people.

On a serious note, oh yeah, I understand. Luckily there is a baseline of absolutely lovely people who are just lovely and don't really want anything, who share work and insights and support instead of sucking them from you. The other sort? Avoid like plagues!

Women Rule Writer said...

Oooh, what about the 'Little Old Me' writers? They assume a position of great innocence about their talent, then let you do all their PR for them, while skimming off the cream of your ideas, contacts etc. Do I sound like I've been stung? I have. Twice! Argh!

Sara said...

pierre - do you mean the 23rd for the Galloway event?
Thanks for buying the anthology!

Tania - Hee! You are cool, but you are lovely too, so phew, you don't have a number yet ;)

Women rule writer - that's a brilliant description! I recognise that one too. Will add it to my list, hope that's ok?

Women Rule Writer said...

Add away, Sara. It is a very real and very annoying type. S/he's the kind who wins comps and then says: 'I forgot I'd even entered that!' Also, s/he doesn't buy lit mags but 'borrows' all of yours.

pierre l said...

Yes, I did mean the Galloway event. I will book my ticket soon.

kellie said...

Damn, Tania beat me to claiming number 6!

Hey, you forgot the best one: the inept, attention-seeking, lunatic.

The Poet Laura-eate said...

Well speaking for myself I try to be a two-way street and have indeed had to stop being so helpful re co-hosting lit events etc as I wasn't getting any writing done!

:-)

Perhaps it is time for a career move if you're simply not enjoying it any more/no longer accept schmoozers as an occupational hazard (see them for the desperate writers in a desperate market where they must also be crack marketeers, they are!)

Douglas Bruton said...

Yes there are thorns... but look for the roses... they are worth it, all the pain of pricks to the skin...

Actually, I found this post a little sad... that you appear to have been let down and abused by your fellows... so much. And I wonder if perception is not part of the problem. Try looking at the world with a brighter light, a more cheerful light?

And maybe it's just me, but I didn't get what was wrong with number 4...

Chin up and cheer up, Sara... in the words of Monty Python 'always look on the bright side of life', and writing, and writers, and people.

Best wishes to you

D

Vanessa Gebbie said...

a few more for you:

the one who asks you what you'll be doing at your forthcoming workshop on opening up creativity, flash fiction, etc...says 'Wow, what a brilliant workshop!" then books a country house and puts on an identical course costing punters four times as much....

and

the one who moans about other writers not sharing contacts, market info, comp info... and never swaps any info themselves...

and another(!)

the one who says 'you won what? Oh THAT comp. I didn't enter myself... forgot...' (course of they had... they'd have won, right?)


this is good fun!!

Jo Horsman said...

crikey. serious business. Don't hold back, Sara - let it all out!

Hope you're having a fun trip away. x

sara said...

vanessa i'm glad you see this as a fun post, it was intended as such. Douglas - there's nothing at all wrong with lovely number 4, I have met some good 'uns too! the poet laurate - ooh no, not ever giving up, but I will have a bitch now and then! Jo - it's very foresty and rainy and wintery!

aoc gold said...

The Last Rose of Summer
(1)

Tis the last rose of summer

Left blooming alone;

All her lovely companions

Are faded and gone;

No flower of her kindred,

No rose-bud is nigh,

to reflect back her blushes,

Or give sigh for sigh.

(2)

I'll not leave thee, thou lone one!

To pine on the stem;

Since the lovely are sleeping,

Go, sleep thou with them.

thus kindly I scatter

Thy leaves o'er the bed

Where thy mates of the garden

Lie scentless and dead.
(3)

Soon may I follow,

When friendships decay,

And from Love's shining circle

The gems drop away.

When true hearts lie withered,

And fond ones are flown,

O! who would inhabit

This bleak world alone?

~~~by runescape gold

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