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'Shake up the world'

12 July 2010

Only now that the book is out have I fully realized what the most frightening part of the process is. The questions: How will the reading public respond? Do ads work? Do people even read much anymore, beyond vampire books? Is the sophomore slump real? Is the sales rank on a true indicator?

Here's what I've come to know about such questions. They are, in essence, useless. In the face of what Loyal Ledford and his people went through, such questions are unimportant. In the face of the injustices about which I wrote, injustices that still go on today, such questions are materialistic. In the face of what the young veterans in my classes have seen, such questions are wildly unimportant.

I want people to buy and read my book, but the reasons for this want lie not in sales rank or blog hits. The reasons lie where they always have for the artist. If we do our job right, writers can, in the words of Muhammad Ali, shake up the world.

Glenn Taylor, author of The Marrowbone Marble Company on Publishing Perspectives