Thursday, March 6, 2008

He's flying, I'm the passenger

In January, my editor told me that they'd sent galleys (i.e. the finished book, except not bound) of Boys of Steel to a couple of people with the hope that they might donate a blurb for the book jacket.

I've been in publishing for nearly fourteen years
—four years in marketing, the years since as a full-time writer (with some sunlighting as a cartoonist). That whole time, I've been skeptical of book blurbs. They usually seem disingenuous. (3/24/08 addendum: Stephen King expanded on this.) It's not like these blurbers sought out a galley and then eagerly sent their raves to the publisher on their own. Of course, it's easy to set aside this feeling when certain names are thrown in front of you.

In my case, the people my publisher solicited blurbs from were Michael Chabon and Chip Kidd.

For that, I owe yet another nod of gratitude to Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, and, symbolically, to Superman. I've worked steadily as a freelance writer for nearly ten years, which is a source of both pride and panic to me, but I've not established even an iota of the clout that would earn a Chabon or Kidd blurb.

That's all Superman. He's flying here. I'm just the passenger.

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