Writing is like prostitution. First you do it for love, and then for a few close friends, and then for money. - Moliere
I saw this quote recently and loved it. That Moliere, he's a pretty neat guy. Born Jean-Baptiste Poquelin, he is more famously known by his stage name, sort of the Prince or Madonna of his day.
Here's some interesting comparisons between us and Moli, as we like to call him. Much like my friend Doreen and I, Moli was a writer, and a pretty funny guy (I will admit to having read some of his stuff, he really should think about blogging!) We all know how to accessorize, case in point, check out his hat. Imagine what he could have done with a be-dazzler? Also like me, the man had a chronic cough. Moli was also brilliant and adored. Yeah, you go ahead, draw the comparison there, my friends. Of course there are many, many ways in which we're different, including the fact that he was condemned by the church and was rumored to have married his own daughter (ewwww, actually it was his first wife's daughter with another man but still, ewww).
Who knew you'd actually learn something from this blog, huh? But here's my point. He was right. Good old Moli was right. I started writing for love, for self-expression and as an avenue for all the little ideas, people and thoughts that danced around in my brain. I had to let them out or go crazy and putting them down on paper, well it just made sense. But was it any good? I numbed my ego and thickened my skin oh-so-slightly then began sharing my writing with some close friends (who, by the way, have been incredibly positive, encouraging and flattering and if you're all lying I'd rather not know). Bolstered by their support, I've shared my work with strangers, aka agents, fellow writers and in NY's Penn station, tourists visiting the third stall on the left in the ladies room (some of my best work is on the back of that door). And that's been alright too.
Next step? Prostitution. Yes, I'm ok with it. I'm more than willing to sell myself to see my name in print (out of the gutter people, we're not talking about sex so keep those comments to yourselves!). Of course I'd prefer to see it on the big wooden display in B&N, 2 books lined up neatly below the sign that says "NY Times #1 Bestseller (only 2 books because they are having trouble keeping up with demand!) but honestly, I'd even settle for a spot on the "Paperbacks, Buy 2 get 1 Free" table. We all have to start somewhere, right?
It's a variation of that old joke where a man offers a woman an absurd amount of money to spend the night. She agrees, whereby he immediately tries to reduce the amount they've agreed to. The woman says "Sir, exactly what kind of woman do you think I am?" and the man replies "We've already established that, now we're just negotiating the price."
To all you agents and publishers out there - just so we're clear, I am for sale. Step right up and make me an offer.
So just out of curiosity, what would you sell yourself for?