Thursday, September 2, 2010

On Staying True To Oneself

Elana Johnson had an awesome blog post yesterday about "staying cool," and what that actually means. Like most of the people who commented, I think it's a mixture of staying true to yourself, staying in touch with what is real (as opposed to what is perceived), allowing yourself to change and grow as a person, staying humble, and living your life as you need to live it without worrying about what impression you're making.

And then I thought: what does that mean as I work on my manuscripts? I guess it means I should write the book that is burning to be written, and not worry about squishing it into a trend.

And then I thought: but what about all those agent blogs that talk about a book needing to be marketable before they can take it on? And I remembered all of the ideas I've had for books - pages and pages of ideas - that I've put on hold while I work on the one or two ideas that I think will be the most marketable. Suddenly I feel very un-cool.

And I wonder: how can I possibly stay true to myself while pursuing a career in this? Is that even something I can do? Is the only way to stay true to oneself and write marketable work to just have lucky timing?

What do you think?


  1. No idea. I do think it's almost impossible to predict the trends, so I guess you just sort of have to write what you have to ... and then hope to set the trend.

  2. Hope - that can keep you moving forward through the wondering.