Do the two words writing and money have anything to do with each other? Sometimes I think they are oxymorons.
Here’s some good advice for all you wannabe writers.
“There are three rules for writing a novel. Unfortunately, nobody knows what they are.”–W. Somerset Maugham
Don’t wannabe a writer anymore? Do you think you have a choice?
I’m doing things a little different this time. Instead of choosing self-publishing as my first option, I have submitted the MS of my newest crime thriller to a publisher. I will see how this pans out. The publisher’s editor said he would like to see my completed MS, so I sent it to him. As for the MS, I have reread it at least ten times and made edits. I think it is in good shape now. I am not ruling out self-publishing. I’m just trying to see if I can increase my sales by going the traditional publishing route. In any case, my latest thriller will be published, one way or the other.
There’s an article about Charles Manson in the current edition of Esquire that mentions the movies about Manson, but it fails to mention one of the best movies about him, which was the excellent TV movie Helter Skelter starring Steve Railsback, directed by Tom Gries and based on the nonfiction book of the same name written by Vincent Bugliosi and Curt Gentry. Extreme oversight if you ask me. Instead of mentioning the movie version of Helter Skelter, the Esquire author mentions The Haunting of Sharon Tate and Bad Times at the El Royale as movies about Charles Manson. How can you leave out Helter Skelter? It was one of the most popular programs on network TV during the year it premiered in 1976.
I was attending UCLA as a freshman in 1969, the year the Manson Family murdered the actress Sharon Tate and her wealthy friends. The campus is right next door to Benedict Canyon where Roman Polanski and Sharon Tate were renting a house on Cielo Drive, the site of her murder, and I harbored the fear in the back of my mind in those days that members of Manson’s family might sneak onto campus and commit more murders in the name of Charlie and the race war he was trying to incite. Instead of a race war, he precipitated the beginning of the end of the hippie movement, opening everyone’s eyes to the dark side of the flower people, their psychedelics, and their drug-fueled free-love orgies.
I support the Writers Guild of America, though I’m not fortunate enough to be a member. Packaging agents are in it to make money for themselves and therefore aren’t negotiating in the best interests of their writer clients. And now certain high-powered agencies like William Morris Endeavor and Creative Artists Agency are forming their own production companies, which shows they are not working to get the best deal for their writer clients but for the production company that they themselves work for and represent. How can an agent fairly represent both a writer and a production company that’s hiring the writer? There’s no way this kind of relationship can result in the best deal for a writer.
Writing is like getting up on a cross and having the nails slowly driven into your wrists so you can watch the blood flow. Oh the joy.