Manuscripts Burn


"Manuscripts don't burn"
- Mikhail Bulgakov

Hi, I'm horror and science fiction author Steve Kozeniewski (pronounced: "causin' ooze key.") Welcome to my blog! You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and Amazon. You can e-mail me here, join my mailing list here, or request an e-autograph here. Free on this site you can listen to me recite one of my own short works, "The Thing Under the Bed."

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Rare Introspective Post

I dislike the usual blog format, which is mostly someone whining about something going on in their life that only makes sense if you go back and read the last 5 post to figure out who, exactly, "Fred" and "Andy" are. That, or it's repeating some political discourse you heard your favorite pundit say and passing it off as your own original thought. Or, in the case of a disturbingly high number of Thai teenagers, posting many, many pictures of yourself around the streets of Bangkok.

So I rarely use my blog as a soapbox, and, anyway, this is a literary blog and the point is the story, right? But, as I'm retooling the blog to a MWF update schedule, I figure I have the space and breathing time to try a variety of format changes now and then. I assure you it will never hurt the new posting schedule. So bear with me as I bitch about something near and dear to my heart:

Brown nosers.

Not just any brown nosers. The brown nosers of the blogosphere. Let's call them...blognosers. (I don't know, I'm not much good at this portmanteau stuff.) I assume this breed of scum surfaces all throughout the blogosphere, but there is a particular species that bothers me over in my corner of the net.

As a writer I follow the blogs of a number of agents, editors, publishers, and other authors. All these lovely folks that keep blogs make it abundantly clear that their purpose is to improve the knowledge base of all the folks out there trying to break into the industry. Following this stuff is how you keep up with the fast-paced and dying world of print publishing. And it's just generally good for professional courtesy and networking, I believe.

There is a sub-genus of blognosers, though, that feel the need to just slather as much sickening praise as possible on the bloggers that are already in the industry. They seem to wait for an agent to say something so they can pop up and say, "Brilliant! Faulkner himself couldn't have worded your argument better!" Often their comments are nothing but fawning praise. I mean, I wouldn't mind if they commented, praised a truly deep post briefly, and then added something to the conversation.

Present company excluded, naturally.

The "not only are you handsome, but powerful as well" crowd sickens me to an extent. The goal of this behavior, I take it, is not to engage in a discourse about the wide world of publishing, but to gain the attention of an agent so that when they do query him, they can say, "It's me SnugglyNiblits17, remember me from the blog? I said you looked like Gary Cooper in your avatar?"

I can sympathize with this behavior, really I can. I'm in the same boat as the rest of you. I wish some agent would find me so charming and witty on the forums that he becomes my pen pal and then I can just casually slip him my manuscript. But I would recommend that instead of working on your skills as a sycophant, you work on your skills as a writer. Then the agent really will notice you. Trite, clearly, but true.


  1. I couldn't have said it better myself. What a genius post.

  2. I find your comment germane and infinitely witty.


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