Thursday, August 16, 2007

canaries on the rim etc. etc.

It would seem obvious that I already read Chip Ward's Canaries on the Rim: Living Downwind in the West years ago, as it came out in 1999 and I moved to the canyon country he discusses in the book in 1999. However, I did not--but I am now, as it is one of the many books scattered around my friend's place here in the middle of Capitol Reef National Park. So far, I am enjoying and learning from it. And of course it's always fun to read about those places which we know and call home ourselves, especially if they are not well-known. I also want to read his Hope's Horizon: Three Visions for Healing the American Land. Hallelujah for people willing to take the risk and speak out, eh?

Well, as every reader knows, there most certainly is not time enough to read everything published. Listen to this factoid: one company tracking these things estimated the number of books published in 2006 was 291,920. Good grief, eh? Ah, the state of literature, etc. etc. When one considers all the drivel published out there too, the sheer numbers truly become overwhelming. Not that I can really picture nearly 300,000 books in the first place. I can barely make it through lists I've already had for years. And some writers wonder why their books don't sell. Look at the insane amount of competition out there! You have to be your own marketing team, usually.

Other fun factoid: supposedly, about 50% of the mass paperback market in the U.S. and Canada is claimed by romances, which shouldn't really be surprising. I write back cover copy for Harlequin romances, which is a total hoot and harder than one might think, sometimes. I have toyed with the idea of writing my own romance novel for a few years now, and it's time to take action on that plan. May sound silly to some, and it offended my "high literary" aspirations for years--but what the heck! Fun and profitable, and romances always have happy endings, etc. etc. I'm gonna go for it. That doesn't mean that I won't be still writing my own high literary work--I am. I'm a bit of a Renaissance woman when it comes to writing, I suppose.

Off to soak in the gorgeous scenery here and compose great works of literature!

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