Woollybear, I agree that the free market system of book acquisitions and sales has a lot of bad actors, fakes, wannabes, and dead ends that make the good agents hard to find. I liked Brandon Sanderson's take on the travails of publishing success. I hope I can have his stamina in writing SIXTEEN novels before his first sale. Not that I want to wait that long--I just want to use my time productively on something I can control--my growth in the craft. This week, I feel like being a writer is a lot like starting a restaurant. Making good food is a such a small part of the equation, and so many restaurant start-ups fail. I'm in awe of the hard work and idealism of some local brew pub owners who have gone through all of the pandemic restrictions and shutdowns of recent months (and will shut down again today due to local public health orders). This one brewpub on my mind is owned by lovely people. Staffing is a family and friend affair. The beer is great, the food is hit and miss, the atmosphere is incredibly family friendly and social--the best for people like me. I want success for them so bad . . . but I don't see how they can possibly survive.

Luck. Sheesh, maybe I should stick to parenting. My failure rate there is perhaps less disheartening.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oH9sJrAVeC0