People seem interested when I tell them what I am studying, publishing, but the conversation about the industry never seems to last long. After reading this passage in John Irving’s “The World According to Garp” (where Garp’s editor, John Wolf, tell’s Garp’s son about the different types of “famous”, and the publishing industry), I wonder if a lot of people feel this way about publishing, in general.
“He began to tell Duncan Garp about the differences between very popular books and just successful ones. He talked about political books, and controversial books, and works of fiction. He told Duncan the finer points of book publishing; in fact, he gave Duncan the benefit of more of his personal opinions about publishing than he had ever given Garp. Garp wasn’t really interested. Duncan wasn’t, either. Duncan would not remember one of the finer points; he fell asleep rather quickly after John Wolf started explaining.”
To those who have feigned interest in these discussions, I thank you for listening, and I hope you enjoyed the sleep.