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TITLE: You've Got My Attention--Now Keep It!
By Elizabeth Hale
07/25/06
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Apparently, as a successful writer, you get to a place where you no longer have to put any effort into it. It seems to be okay for you to get lazy.

Your name alone sells your book. Your finished writing never seems to get edited. You begin to talk down to your readers, endlessly explaining the same old things throughout your book. Your characters are stiff and wooden. They simply, because they are just wonderful, humble people, I guess, have all kinds of things plop right into their laps. They dress well, they have excellent jobs that never seem to require their presence, and they don't show any extreme emotion at any time because they are just so self-controlled, and, oh, brother, who cares?

I can think of several famous writers like this.

The early work they did was great. Seems like the more famous they get, the worse they write. They had a loyal fan base-most of them still do.
My question is WHY?

It's like they turn out books every so often on a machine. Same formula, same characters with different features, and everyone rushes out to buy their books because, "So & So wrote it!"

I do. I keep hoping, always hoping, for the earlier magic they had. Lately, it's just been so disappointing, I think I'm going to stop.

I like the concept of the book so I buy it. By page ten I am bored and angry because once again, it's the same old book in a brand new package.

I don't have the time, the money, or the patience for this. Your name will not sell your book to me any longer.

Just because you have 'made it' doesn't give you the right to talk down to your readers, and get lazy and sloppy.

The reading public is onto you, and the day will come when you don't have your fans anymore.

We can pick up any one of your books, after your early ones, and they are all the same book with a different title.

Editors and publishers snap up your books as soon as you write them, not because of your talent but because of your name. I don't think even they actually read them. Isn't your talent supposed to be more important than your name?

I don't aspire to be like you. I want my writing to mean something. I want my readers to be satisfied even if they never know my name. I want my talent to show and bring happiness. My name is just--a name.

Famous authors, please take note. You still have to do the work too. Your name alone is beginning to mean absolutely nothing. Who wants to buy what is, essentially, the same book that you wrote last year, and the year before that? Or pay good money for a meandering trip into your 'visions' that make no sense at all, and I can't begin to relate to. You're cheating me, and millions of others, but you're also cheating yourself.

Your books will stop selling.

Have you forgotten what drove you to write in the first place?

I think you have.

Until you do the real work, my money will stay in my pocket, and your book, story, article, or whatever, will remain on the shelf.
The opinions expressed by authors may not necessarily reflect the opinion of FaithWriters.com.
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