Monday, March 26, 2012

What's Your Style?

Photo: afasoulis

The publishing industry sometimes reminds me of a fortress with its imposing and almost impenetrable walls. Gatekeepers (agents) check our credentials (book proposal) to see if they're worthy of an audience with the king's representatives (editors). If we pass muster, our work is presented to those who have the ear of the potentate (publishing board).

How do we scale these walls? Here are a few styles I've observed over the years:

The writer suited up for battle:

1) Will pursue an agent/editor until they corner the hapless person and demand an audience.

2) Will "accidentally" trip the emergency button on the elevator, so they have their target captive for at least half an hour.

3) Will stalk their favorite agent/editor throughout a conference, hoping to gain inside information of how to locate a side entrance.

Photo: boquerones

The polite writer:

1) Keeps knocking on the castle door. Their theory centers around the logic that eventually someone will answer.

2) Follows the rules of etiquette when coming face to face with an agent/editor. They wouldn't think of approaching someone without a formal invitation (conference appointment).

3) Has 5,000 Facebook friends, a website, a blog, is on Twitter, and any other social media they hear about.

Photo: gworzdek

Photo: dsparil

The Mountain Climber:

1) Values slow, but steady, progress.

2) Works hard to improve their craft and put in seat-in-chair time.

3) Gives fellow writers a helping hand and values relationships.

4) Builds a platform without being obnoxious.

5) Prays for God's favor and is thankful for the opportunities He provides.

Writers:  Have you observed any other writer styles? Which writer style are you?

Readers: What traits endear you to authors?


Dorothy said...

I love the polite writer with 5000 Facebook friends! That made me laugh :) I sure am not one to go barging into a lift and shutting it down to capture a live editor! No way. Tiptoe tiptoe for me!

Dotti :)

Loree Huebner said...

I believe that I am the Mountain Climber.

The Suited for Battle writer cracked me up!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Susan .. some people are naturally 'forward' in life and create more opportunities for themselves - perhaps they rise and fall more often .. I was born a goat - and that's where I'll stay .. thank you! I keep on keeping on ..

Have a good week - Hilary

Linda O'Connell said...

I am a mountain climber, but I also realize that agents and editors are people, not gods.

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Dotti - Glad I gave you a Monday morning laugh.

Hi Loree - It's slow going but so worthwhile.

Hi Hilary - Hmm, a goat? Does that translate into mountain climber?

Hi Linda - Excellent point. They're people just like us, and the Golden Rule should always apply.

Great comments! I love our exchange of ideas.


Karen Lange said...

I like this analogy. I think I can be a little of each, but lean most toward the mountain climber. Who packs chocolate in my backpack, of course.

Chatty Crone said...

I am just stopping by to say hello on Monday - and wish you a good week! sandie

Nancy said...

I think there are some ideas in both the polite writer and the mountain climber that are good. I would hope that I always treated an author as a person first. That's what they are after all.

Sarah Forgrave said...

I love this analogy, Susan! I'd say I'm a mountain climber, although some days I wish a helicopter would just airlift me to the top. LOL

Marja Verschoor-Meijers said...

Good post Susan, great pictures too. There's a bit of everything in me as I'm trying to keep balance :)

quietspirit said...

I love the analogy. I believe I like the mountain climber. I prefer to be a mountain climber. It might be slow but it's sure.

Rhonda Schrock said...

I like the last one, Susan. Prayer is very important to me, and I've put many into this writing journey. Much of the time, I feel clueless about those protocols and therefores wherefores and thou shalts and thou shalt nots! It's overwhelming, frankly.

I like Karen's suggestion for tucking a treat into the backpack for the long haul. :)

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Karen - I'm right there with you on the chocolate!

Hi Chatty - Thanks, have a good week!

Hi Nancy - The polite writer and the climber both have their good points. I think I'll avoid the first one.

Hi Sarah - LOL! I think a helicopter is a great idea.

Hi Marja - Yes, it's sometimes a challenge to know when to forge ahead and when to take it easy. It's a lot like life.

Hi Quiet Spirit - I'm more like the climber than the others too. :)

Hi Rhonda - I'm sure you'd also have a latte in that backpack!

Susan :)

Ruth Schiffmann said...

I think I'm a mountain climber.

Love the analogy - fun post!

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi In Luv With Words -

Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

I'm glad you liked the post. :)