Conceived of and wrote a 2500 word story by six o'clock this AM. I'll finish it later. Unique voice. I have about 500 works of short fiction available currently, which this industry is preventing anyone from seeing. The work is immaterial. You could guarantee someone--they could be guaranteed--that a story was the best story ever written. That it was infinitely better than anything they had ever run in their venue. That it would bring them recognition. Would reach many people in the world. Would be loved and acclaimed. Even if they could be guaranteed that, if they don't like you, because you are not one of them, they won't even respond. That's everything to them: being one of them, and them liking you. They'll like plagiarists, rapists, and, of course, people with no talent at all. Bad people who will screw other people over. Racists. Sexists. Dumb people who are elitists, because that's typically what they themselves are (a Halimah Marcus, for example; more on her soon--I'll share how she got fiction in One Story and also how she told her assistant when he was an editor at Indiana Review to publish her there, and he did, because she was his boss at Electric Literature; it's pretty funny), which is in many ways the worst kind of person. But if you are smarter than they are, and they know it, and it's not close, they will lock you out. There is nothing that offsets that for them. They could be set up for life with money, with perfect health, what have you. But even if that was offered and guaranteed, they'll carve out their nose to deform their face to spite you if they don't like you because you're not one of them.
The same goes with the nonfiction people, and the publishing houses. You know what's fun? I'll take a book like Cheer Pack to a total loser who is my age, who has published twelve things for free in these godawful literary websites of which there are 50,000 that sound like they have these made-up names. Like, the names are so daft that you couldn't tell someone you were in them. "I have a new prose vignette in spottedcucumber.com." Embarrassing. But then 2000 of their fellow losers praise this, because that's the entire point of being a loser like this. I'd feel like such a failure. But they'll have some micro press of their own, which I have to go around to, offering this book which, had anyone else written it, majors would have bid against each other for it. But it's me--the ultimate pariah to these people. And there is no way this loser cannot take advantage of this power that he has over me in this moment. This nothing, this nobody, who never will be anything, has a hold over me. And of course he'd going to make himself cum by getting to say no. Nothing could bring him more pleasure. It's the best thing to happen to him all year. The situation is so insane, so backwards, but there it is. He won't be able to stop himself from cumming. He'll rocket himself across his room with the power of that orgasm. I won't even open the emails usually. I'll just throw them away. I know what they'll say. I know these people every which way.
Watching a bunch of them "mourn"--always the drama, and lack of perspective, and blowing everything out of proportion, and not being able to handle anything that is real because there is nothing real about these people--Joan Didion. She was bad at writing. Mourning her. Right. One of these people writes, "My despair overwhelms me," and of course another one of them writes, "I'm so sorry that happened to you." She was terrible. I wonder if in the next world she'll be able to think up some titles of her own, or will she just have to steal them from other people like she did in this life? You read about how she got what she got, too, and how she made someone else's career by hooking them up with The New Yorker or Rolling Stone. That's all it is, man--people hooking each other up. They suck, they hook up people like themselves, who come from the money, and the more you suck, the less you threaten or intimidate anyone else, and every moron can follow you and pretend to like you because you're a parallel move for them. They could be you. And they like that. That comforts them. So pure garbage is what we're told is good, in stock terms that could applied to absolutely anything, because they are vague, generic, and insincere. Look how generic every last blurb is. No one means them. Most of the time no one has even read the book. That's not the point. Parallelism is the point.
Pretty simple the way this works right now. The more someone is like someone else, the more that person is likely to "follow" them, consume them, whatever term you want or is applicable. The less someone is like someone else, the less likely they are to do those things. It does not matter if the person unlike that other person offers amazing entertainment, art, anything--that's irrelevant right now. That is canceled out--or not seen, because people won't be open to it--because being like someone else is what just about everyone wants. So everyone with a following will be ordinary, mediocre, have nothing to offer. Look at Twitter. Who is followed? People who have no insight, no wit, nothing. They're just blah. But they have an affiliation, and people who are themselves blah learn about them because of that affiliation, and they follow because of that blah-ness. There are virtually no exceptions to this. And it can take the form of people saying the exact same thing, which you know they will say. They'll say it thousands of times, tens of thousands of times, hundreds of thousands of times in a row. You know they're going to say it. You know it never changes. It never makes you smile or think or feel or laugh. It does nothing. They're followed because blah goes to blah. Because there is nothing there. And that is a comfort. It's parallelism. I don't see how one can't understand how this works. Right now, you have to offer nothing--it's amazing--in order to be successful. What a nightmare existence this is presently if you offer everything. Then you will simply be alone and despised, or ignored, or locked out, avoided, until you find a way to reverse how things are right now. Or at least get that to start with you.
Anyway. As it stands, I know of seven works that are coming out in 2022, plus a book. Came up with a variety of strong ideas pertaining to Joyce's Ulysses, one of which I think I'll be able to do, at least.
This was supposed to be an entry about fun Christmas delights. My bad. I'll do that later maybe. I feel like ass. Ho ho. Here's Santa Claus going to war.