I spend up to two months in Italy per year, but I rarely eat gelato. It upsets my stomach. However, there is a sweet alternative to Italy's ice cream, and that's Gelati.
Giovanni Gelati, that is.
Anything but vanilla flavored, this man who hails from New Jersey has not only become one of my most ardent supporters, he's also become a very good friend (even if we have yet to meet one another in person). He runs a great blog for writers and readers called, well, Gelati's Scoop (go figure!) and a popular daytime blog talk radio program coined, The G-Zone. Obviously Giovanni knows no limit to his tongue-and-cheek media titles. A tall, strapping, good looking dude, he's the kind of guy you can sit down with over cappuccino to discuss the Ancient Greek tragic mythology inherent in German author Max Frisch's, Homo Faber, and then soon after switch to beer while trashing the New York Football Giants backfield ("Yo, Vin let's hit a strip club!"/ "Right on G-dude, we gotta empty out a cash machine first!") . Exactly the type of dynamic person I am lucky enough to meet on special occasion and whose friendship will last me a lifetime.
But enough of my yacking....Gelati, it gives me great pleasure to unleash your wisdom upon the reading public:
Traditional, Really What is Traditional Anymore?
I have to say I was taken aback by Vincent Zandri when he said to me, “Yo G, How about you guest post on The Vox?” I mean let’s face facts, I am not in the man’s stratus when it comes to the written word and I don’t really mean to bring down everyone to my reading and writing ability, but here goes: I have heard the word “traditional”, associated with publishing a lot lately. Seriously! Since I am coming up on my 500th post sometime in the next week or two, I have witnessed a transformation in what is to be called publishing, and I for one love it.
There seems to be three different camps or groups of people wandering around out there: The Big Six in their castles, or skyscrapers looking down on everyone shouting this is “traditional”, shaking their fists and clubs. They have the drawbridge up, the oil is ready to be spilled down from the parapets, on those who oppose their rule. Then you have the self-published & “independents” (meaning not as big as The Big Six), and then there is the camp in which I reside, the readers. Now I have loved being a reader and will remain so, but I am getting my fill of the pabulum being spoon feed, or should I say trying to be spoon fed to us, by the castle dwellers. The packaging of traditional books is good. Being simple minded, I love fancy book covers, but I have found the interior of the novels to be wanting: cookie cutter, mass produced, edited down, formulated, the same old same old. Do you get my point?
Okay the other side is the underdog, self-pub & independents are gaining strength in numbers and dollars. We readers have become the gate keepers; we get to make or break this. What do you want to load that e-reader with, huh? I have a Kindle, don’t throw any stones if you are a Nookie or iPad person, I’m not; we are in this together, platform sameness or not. We get to now read work that has so many fewer layers to it. It’s practically right from the source, kind of like tasting fruit right from the vine. Doesn’t it taste sweeter, fresher, have a better aroma? Me, I am a bit tired of staleness, so I have been on a track to discover fresh fruit, beat the bushes more per say. I want to find that previously forbidden fruit that the castle people told me sucked, it isn’t fit for consumption or purchase; it isn’t “traditionally” published. Well my friends the lid is off that. I think we have all come to understand that, so I am going to beat that drum; many others have. My question is this then: I have come to check out, discover and enjoy many new (Okay they have really been around, but I didn’t see them, really sorry) authors like B.R. Stateham, Thad Brown, Big Daddy Abel, Amy Faircloth, Joanne Lewis, Vincent Zandri (remember a year ago he wasn’t a rock star like he is today!), Jason McIntyre, and publishers like my sponsor Trestle Press or good friends at Stonehouse Ink, and on and on. Happy? As a reader I am totally amped.
The big question I have is why aren’t the big name authors jumping over the walls in droves? Why not? Are they afraid that we the readers aren’t going to support them? Don’t they see that we want to? Are they afraid that without the castle dwellers’ support system they will fail? Why do they want to stay behind the wall? When their novels hits Kindle and they have more one star reviews than five star reviews because of price, does that not speak to them? Maybe some of them fear the fact that, that rawness, that honesty the reader has gained, that heart and soul that is displayed by the radical new group that is made up of the self-published and independents is gaining strength, readership and favor. Do they possess those traits or have the castle dwellers beaten it out of them and made them mere servants to their “traditional” system? Are they reliant solely on those that edit their stories to death, make their covers, tell them where they can aggregate (yeah, I know aggregate this!) and publicize their work(I think that one is oxymoron or are some of the publisists,haha.)? I for one enjoy being outside the walls , having freedom of choice, freedom of movement and freedom to read what I want to read when and on what type of e-reader I wish (laptop,Kindle,computer, Smartphone), at the price I choose. I say join me and tell the castle dwellers that it is time to let down the drawbridge, freedom for all, including fair pricing, inclusion and stop the rhetoric of hate and bull@#$. Embrace those brave enough, heart strong, and willing to put themselves out there without any type of safety net, the self-published and the independent publishers. They for me are the new “traditional”. The old “traditional” is about to go the way of the cave man’s club used in war, the Edsel, and the Slap-Chop, but maybe not the Snuggee(Do you Have yours?).
I am going to be bold and only post on the new “traditional” authors the week of April 11th. Join me if you are someone that leaves a review on any platform, blog, or social network. Be bold! Be loud! Let the castle dwellers know that it is time to change or face extinction. Did I get my point across? Do you wish to challenge my viewpoint? Do you need recommendations on what to read from some new “traditional authors”? I can help; I would love that! Remember I am kind of tall and push over large buildings with only one leg. But if you want to personup and get in touch with me, I don’t think that is too hard to do. Check me out at my blog, Gelati’s Scoop(www.gelatisscoop.blogspot.com ), my blogtalk radio show, The G-ZONE ( Vincent Zandri will be my guest this Thursday @ 12pmEST.) call in and give me a piece of your mind, I dare you. Okay I don’t, but I would like to talk to you. Or just take a direct route and tell me just how simple minded I am at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks again to my friend that has forgotten me after I helped him become famous, the one, the only; you guessed it, Vincent Zandri!WWW.VINCENTZANDRI.COM