The future of art will be a lot like the past: Having the freedom to do what you love, doing it with abandon, until you get so good at it that someone else loves what you do.
Hugh C. Howey
THE PUB 2014
Photo is by my talented sister, Lucy Ayettey Lyons
I happen to like this world of ours a great deal—it is nothing if not entertaining—but I have to admit that it is damnably hard to find out the truth of things. By this, I don’t mean the absolute truth—I’m not that naive—but more a sufficient sense of things to avoid the more serious pitfalls.
This modest ambition is difficult because a great deal of what people tell you just isn’t true. This does not necessarily mean they are lying—although that’s a possibility you’d be wise not to exclude. It may simply mean that they, too, have been misinformed, and are just passing it on. Or it may just be that they are embarrassingly and woefully ignorant.
Whatever be the reality, it is a good idea not to call people liars—especially in a gun culture like the U.S.
In my experience, agents and traditional publishers certainly don’t tell the truth—the fact they market fiction seems to have rubbed off on them—though the good news is that they rarely wear guns. That said, you never know. But the bottom line is that I have no good advice—other than “watch your step” where traditional publishing is concerned.
As for indie publishers, they come in all shapes, sizes, and levels of integrity—so you might well strike it lucky there.
But if you are brave enough to strike out on your own—and you will certainly need courage—then here are a two names worth tracking who seem to be willing to speak truth to vested interests—and are well worth reading: