All writers experience this, though it’s usually not talked about in public. At least, I think it isn’t. So, let me be one writer who doesn’t mind bringing it to the forefront. If a friend of yours had hit the big time and suddenly didn’t want to acknowledge you exist, what would you do?
A few years ago, one of my crit partners told me a friend of hers had hit the big time by landing NY and her attitude toward her “lesser” writing friends had changed. While I won’t go into details, let’s just say she knew this person when and leave it at that. Because of her snotty treatment, she had lost herself a fan as well as a friend. In fact, she had lost two fans because even I refuse to buy her books.
At this point, most people might think it was jealousy on my CP’s part or her screaming sour grapes. Trust me, that wasn’t the case. However, it had left me thinking for a long time about how I’d react had I been in her shoes.
I’d feel hurt. If we had bonded over this treacherous road to publication and so-called friend decided I needed to get my own ride the rest of the way because her limo was full with her and her big head, there would be a whole slew of emotions coming from me. Hurt would be the biggest of them all.
My CP’s friend had landed her first NY contract a few years ago and has been banging them out of the park ever since and my CP is very happy for her. From what I understand, this writer has earned her bumps, bruises, and stabs to the gut. But what I don’t understand is why do some writers feel they need to change after making that big sale to NY? It’s like they have this image to uphold and their chin goes up right along with it, snubbing the rest of us little folk. Said writer can’t afford to associate with anyone who hasn’t obtained NY-published status yet because she acts as though it will ruin her precious image.
For the longest time I’ve felt like there was this clique that existed among all genre writers. We’re right back in high school again where this large chasm exists between the Queen Bees and the Wanna Bes, and so-called writer friends are doing everything to make sure their status is maintained in the QB crowd. Sorry, but I don’t play those kinds of games. Never have. Never will. And if I’m “inducted” into the Queen Bee crowd when I land NY, rest assured, I’ll continue my rogue ways and associate with whomever I please. To hell with the status quo. I like me just the way I am.
One thing I’ve been desperately trying to do is not to lose contact with the friends I’ve grown close to during my writing stint. Regardless of where they are in their careers, I think it’s important to maintain those bonds because they keep you grounded and they will most likely be the last ones to desert you when things go wrong.
While I might disappear out off the internet radar for a while, it doesn’t mean I’m ignoring anyone. It’s a matter of trying to balance the full-time job, writing, and just plain motherhood exhaustion. If I don’t hit you up via email or your blog after a month, then I give you permission to remind me that you’re out there even if it’s just a “Hey. What’s up?” on my Facebook page. So while I’ll always make new friends along the way, resassured I’ll be doing everything to make sure I don’t lose my old ones in the process.
So given the above situation with my CP and her NY-pubbed friend, what would you do? How would it make you feel? Has it happened to you already?