What Kind of Writer Are You?

I’m not really sure, but it doesn’t seem to me that other professions get asked this question based on the medium of their art. I’m a writer. And author on days I want to sound snooty. I’m not a self-pubbed author, or a trade pubbed author, or a hybrid author, or whatever-insert your word in the blank here-author. I’m just an author. Sometimes my work gets to the public via different methods, mediums and modes of publication. But the how of it; that is, how my work gets published,  doesn’t define the what I am.

Stop trying to fucking box me in. I need to be labeled so you can feel secure about all the upheaval and change occurring as a result of the digital revolution finally-finally-hitting books, and book stuffs and book peoples. Don’t lay your shit of needing to tell me what I am at my feet. Keep that shit to your self.

No one goes around saying George Clooney is a traditional actor-or- George Clooney is an indie actor. Nope. They just call him an actor. The awards he gets are for acting REGARDLESS of the type of movie he’s in. Maybe the movie gets minted for an indie category or a traditional category or some such, but the producers, actors, camera peeps, well, everyone just gets called by their title and not by the their title in addition to the types of films they make. Same goes for artist. No one goes around saying he/she/it is an indie painter or a traditional sculptor. No, they just say she’s a painter or he’s a sculptor.

So why the fuck is the fascination for authors to be labeled by their  mode of publication so goddamn hot?

I dunno. But it seems to me, and trust me- I’m a women and a minority- every time someone is trying to pigeon-hole you or label you or stick you in a fucking box, they are doing it out of fear or jealousy or anger or some other negative emotion that makes them react by making you seem smaller, more manageable, tame. And stop labeling yourself. You do yourself no favors. You’re HELPING them box yourself in. They’ve co-opted you in your further marginalization of being relegated to a convenient “label” and forgotten or written off or whatever.

There is a lot of movement going on in an industry that probably hasn’t seen such movement since the moveable type was invented. Some big Houses couldn’t cut it and either went under, got absorbed or went defunct. Consolidation in brick and motor bookstores, the decimation of the independent bookstores, used bookstores has lead to issues as has the digital publishers arrival onto the scene. Shit is happening peeps. And people are fucking scared. But NOW is a time of opportunity. Only, they want to stick you with a label and call it done.

What kind of writer am I? The kind that writes. And chooses were to seek publication based on a variety of factors, the least of which is what you want to call me. The LEAST of which is what you want to call me. So, I’m NOT an indie author, or a traditional author, or a hybrid author, or any-other-thing-you-want-to-call-me-author. I’m just a writer, who’s sometimes an author, who loves having CHOICE in the method of disseminating my work to the public. Don’t label me and try to make me fit your idea of who I am. In fact, don’t do that for any author.

They are authors. I am an author. Period.

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