What makes you a Third Tier writer? Well, I’m glad you asked. With so much uncertainty as to this elusive tier system in the indie world, it is a term that surely needs to be defined.
Third Tier writers let readers decide what books readers want to read.
Yup. You read that correctly. I know, it’s not complicated. Pretty simple, in fact. However, this is the internet, and since I don’t want to have to come back later and clarify what I said, I’m gonna break it down for you.
- Reader #1 walks into a book store. (We’re talking about a store with printed books. Yes, they still exist. They’re not going anywhere, so shush!) Reader #1 came to the bookstore because Friend #1 recommend this fabulous new book called Sexy Times about some hot billionaire tying up some virgin college student. Reader #1 buys Sexy Times because Friend #1 told her she should. Yes, it does work like this. I know, shocking! Readers buy books because other readers recommend them!
- Reader #2 browses the online mega store called Gargantuan, just like lots and lots of readers do every day. In fact, lots of readers recommend books to each other online through blogs and messages boards, and they say silly things like, “Hey Reader #2, have you read Cotton? You should really click on over to Gargantuan and get it. It’s free if you have Gargantuan Unlimited.”
What exactly am I trying to say here? Readers decide what they want to read. Readers decide what is worthy of their time. Does a reader care if an author took ten years to write a book? Nope. Does Reader #3 email Gargantuan and ask for a button to filter books based on number of edits or number of years it took to write it? Nope. Does Reader #4 care if Friend #4 says a book was great, or a book was terrible? You bet your booty!
I’ve learned a lot this week on the internet, which really isn’t surprising, since it’s, y’know…the internet. 1) Women can’t write good quality sci/fi was one little gem, 2) those who write four books a year are not writing “excellent” quality books, and 3) the Huffington Post apparently deletes comments from readers who disagree with the writer of the article.
My takeaway from all the rampant crazy? Write at your own pace. Write what you love, write your little heart out. Or don’t. Or write super fast. Write fan fiction, don’t write it. Write eight books a month, or one book every decade. Write because you want to make money, or write because you love your craft and hate money. No one way is the be-all end-all, no matter what credentials advice givers have after their names. Whatever. Readers will decide if your work is worth their time. Readers decide what is quality, no matter how much some authors want to judge each other.
If authors could package up that elusive MOJO quality that makes a reader love a book, then of course, we’d all be buying that MOJO like hotcakes. The fact is, quality is a subjective notion. What is quality to one person may not be to others. What I do know for a fact is that readers are the ones who decide what quality is, not authors or publishers — and I would never in a million years presume to tell a reader that the books they love are crap. I wouldn’t tell anyone who enjoyed Sexy Times that the writing was crap, or it was based on fan fiction and is inferior, or she only took less than ten years to write it, because the FACT is that the author of that book found her MOJO and her readers are THIRSTY for it. As a writer, don’t we all want that MOJO? Don’t we all want readers to enjoy our books? So cutting each other down really doesn’t do anything except…cut us down.
If you’ve made it this far and smell what I’m cookin’, then welcome to the Third Tier. I hope I have clarified my position on this matter. Since I am a writer, I should expect that readers will form an opinion of my post based on my words and the way I chose to put them together in pretty little sentences. If my intended message is lost to a large majority of readers, well, who is at fault there? The reader? Nope. The writer.
START: September 16, 2015 0730
END: September 16, 2015 0833
EDIT: removed curse words
END: September 16, 2015 0844
Oh, PS. Looks like the Huffington Post didn’t delete the mobile version of the 90+ comments that were deleted. Judge for yourself if posts were offensive, or if others were engaging in what is known as a debate. I apologize for cutting off parts of messages, it was tough to do and there were a lot of them. Unfortunately, I have this terrible excuse for a book thing that I am currently working on, so I can’t spend a ton of time on this. Cheers!!
Yes, these are responses. Seem pretty clear to me. What you and the author believe everyone “misunderstood” is a different matter entirely from what the author’s own words conveyed to MANY people reading this article. Readers of this article gave input based on what the author said and how she said it. If you write an article and then need to go back and “clarify” it because massive amounts of people don’t understand you, then clearly, you did not do a good job of explaining your points.