Blogger's Block by Lisa

I’ve had a lot of anxiety about writing my first blog. “What will I write about?”“What do I know that anyone gives a sh** about?” and “What is a blog anyway?”
The truth is, I was and still am to a degree, “blog challenged". Liz, who is very
blog proficient, has always effortlessly used this word as she’s told me about
“reading this blog” or "commenting on that blog” during our search for an agent
and a publisher.

I'd heard of blogs of course, but had no idea how they worked. What was the
difference between a blog and a website? Didn't I need to know such things
before I could spew my opinions across the web, or more realistically, to our
five projected readers? I'd heard that you could subscribe to them, even post
on them, but I'd never even seen one up close. Liz said to check out a few blogs
to familiarize myself and I wondered, “how?” 

So, after some research and coming dangerously close to purchasing a book called
Blogging for Dummies, (yes, there is one!) I got a partial handle on things. I also
developed a case of blog envy, which I suppose is not hard to do when you're a
complete blog novice. 

There is one particular blog out there that is undeniably good and I'm obsessed
with--Stephanie Klein’s Greek Tragedy. She seems to blog with ease and humor
and I care about what she has to say whether it's her running nose or her living
room redesign. Admittedly, I've been studying it for ideas on how to do this
whole blog thing. She was discovered from her blog and dubbed the "Internet Queen"
and has since written two books, Straight Up and Dirty: A Memoir and Moose: A
Memoir of Fat Camp. (Definitely go buy both of them right now!) Like her blog,
both books are honest and funny. 

I can only hope that you care what Liz and I have to say or are at the very least
entertained by our love of the fluffy beach read and silly observations about life.
We are simply looking for others like us….others that aren't afraid to admit out
loud that Chick lit is still very much alive and not buried six feet under like many
in the publishing world will tell you. 

Believe me I get it, it's hard to sell, but it's not dead.  And it certainly can't be so
dire that you have to write it "with a twist” like we were told. Agents argued that,
although regular Chick lit wasn't selling, other kinds like paranormal Chick lit were. 
Come again? Did we have to change our lead characters to witches who, instead of
buying Manolo Blahniks, went shopping for chic black cloaks and trendy brooms?
(No offense to anyone who writes that but it just wasn't what we wanted to hear.)
We remained true to ourselves and continued to believe in our story all while being
told by agent after agent that if only we’d written this book a few years ago, it
would've been "a snap" to publish. They said that it was funny, had great dialogue,
blah blah blah. BUT…there just wasn't a snowball's chance in hell of selling it unless
we were already published. 

I'm sure there's a lot of truth to that. But isn’t there something to be said for
Chick lit fans who crave material from new authors? Remember when Emily Giffin’s
first book came out not that many years ago? We’d never heard of her and it hit
the NY Times best seller list.  And even though we love Candace Bushnell, those who
weren’t following her column in the NY Observer maybe hadn’t heard of her either.
Her first book was so popular it spawned the creation of arguably one of the most
popular TV shows of all time...and currently there’s another show on the air based on
another book she wrote that, BTW, I’m praying doesn’t get cancelled. (I mean is
there anyone better to look at than Kirby Atwood?)

But I digress. A major blog faux pas, I'm sure.  My point is that every published
author was at one time unpublished and someone took a chance on them. At the
end of the day, I think fans of Chick lit care just as much about reading a good
story as who wrote the book. And when they go to the bookstore they aren’t thinking
about the stigma many have attached to these “frivolous and trashy” books, as
they’re often described. They don’t feel guilty that they’re bypassing books like
Freakonomics. They buy Chick lit because they want the predictable tale where hot,
rich, good-looking boy meets terribly lonely, but incredibly well dressed, single girl,
and they live happily ever after. I love to read... all kinds of books...but these are the
nuggets on paper that I crave...where I can turn off my brain and escape into a world
where, by the end of the book, everything is tied up in a perfect red bow.  I know
there are others out there who want more Chick lit... who want to read new authors
who tell sassy versions of a very old story...who agree that, as long as there are chick
flicks, there will be Chick lit.