No, I Don’t Want a Free Copy of Your Self-Published Novel

A writer friend posted a rather rudely phrased article on her Facebook page from a successful screenwriter who declines the opportunity to read summaries and scripts of acquaintances to “give them feedback.” 

Hell, I’m only a bookseller, and they foist their self-published novels at me and tell me to please take a free copy, because “everybody who has read it loved it.” And that’s even after I tell them the bookstore will take 3 copies on consignment. ISN’T THAT ENOUGH FOR THEM?

It takes me 8 hours to read a novel, and it’s only hubris that makes someone think they deserve to dictate 8 hours of another person’s time. I’m already not going to be able to read even a fraction of the books I personally crave to read, so I’m not going to put off reading Boy, Snow, Bird or All the Light We Cannot See for a self-indulgent project that had to be vanity published for a REASON.

Look, guys, send that MS around while you’re working on the next one. If you do get published, and then if you’re lucky and talented enough that it sells, you’ll want some of your juvenilia on hand for a quick-rewrite follow-up.  


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