Thinking Outside the Box in the Literary World?

I have stated many times before, I took up writing after my retirement from federal service over ten years ago.  I have always enjoyed writing.  Writing stories is like a drug to me.  I'm able to escape reality and live in a make believe world of my choosing.  Some readers say that is one reason they enjoy reading. I can appreciate that as well. Be that as it may, trying to get your idea or story published can be an adventure worth writing about in and of itself.  I won't rehash all the disconcerting hassles I went through in trying to get my novel (Diary:  Alone on Earth) published with a traditional publisher.  I learned a very valuable lesson during that ordeal.  I also learned that literary agents are an exercise in futility.  That's as nice as I will ever be about a "literary agent."  A traditional publisher or literary agent is not interested in you unless you are an established writer or a celebrity coming out of rehab for the ninth time.  In short, both the traditional publishers and literary agents are stifling innovation in writing.  If you don't meet a certain criteria or standard, they don't wish to speak to you.  That's a shame.  I have come across some very talented writers during my time in trying to get my novel published.  They too had bad experiences attempting to get published.  I finally went the eBook route with my novel.  I didn't enjoy the success I had anticipated because I simply could not afford to go the self-publishing paperback venue.  But, I did get good reviews on my book.  I just did not meet the standard(s) set forth by publishing overlords.

I attempted to get a job with About.com as a monthly contributor in the "Senior Living" category.  I have lots of expertise, especially over the past ten years.  But, About.com only looks at standards, just as literary agents and publishers maddeningly do.  They could not fathom someone's life experiences would be of any benefit to their readers unless they have a master's degree or working in physical therapy(?).  It seems not only do traditional publishers and literary agents stifle innovation, but online publishers do as well.   Yes, I applied with About.com and was summarily rejected.  Now, I realize competition is fierce.  I accept that.  But, I feel that it was my not fitting the standard, the in-the-box mode that kept me from being even considered.  I was told the review would be long since they had so many applicants.  I was given a rejection notice in less than 5 days.  I didn't fit the standard the writing world looks for in a writer. So, send off the standard rejection notice in email.  And that's a shame.  There are a lot of writers, like me, who have a lot to share.  But, we are unable to get past that traditional barrier setup by the writing world of publishers, literary agents and the About.coms of the world.  Did I expect to be chosen?  I put my chances at 50/50 at best.  I knew what I was up against.  But, to receive a rejection so quickly...well, it tells you that you didn't fit their "traditional criteria."

I took a look at some of their titles on About.com Saturday (02/08/2014)"Ohio Man Gets Buried with His Harley"...."Behind the Scenes of the LEGO Movie."...."Get A Better Looking Butt"....."Does A Degree Matter Much in the Music Biz?"(talk about your irony of ironies)Really?  Is this what we have come to in the writing world?  I'm "About" ready to throw in the towel.  It's just not worth the aggravation any longer.  If this is what passes for "writing" in today's world, I want no part of it.


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