It's not very good, but it's not unambitious, and it's not lazy. It's about him but it's not, it's revealing but it's not, and in the end, it's interesting but it's not.
That's a quote from Linda Holmes on James Franco's new novel. Do you know who James Franco is? If not, check out IMDb or even Holmes' entire article here at NPR. In short, he's an actor who seemingly does everything. I thought I even read a tidbit about him in the last year or so that said he was pursuing his PhD at Yale University. And among the things he thinks he can do, is that he can write. Or not.
But my point isn't whether or not that he can write. I haven't read the novel. And that isn't Holmes' point, either. My point is that the novel that Holmes says isn't very good, is a novel that he got published, probably within a short span of time. And why? Because of who he is.
And here we are, every day putting our fingers to the keyboards, or keypads, or pens to the paper, checking and rechecking our word counts and making sure our characters jump from the page and that our dialogue is natural and flows well and querying agents and collecting rejections like Aaron collects bottle caps, and this guy, who does everything but maybe not very well, gets a book deal. Because he's a celebrity.
Am I jealous? Of course; I'd be a liar if I said that I wasn't. But the chances of me becoming a celebrity are slim to none, so I'll have to go the traditional route of writing query letters and making connections to get any of my work published. And that is fine with me.