What has Geri learned today?
While seeking a job to cover some expenses I've incurred as well as hoping for some additional experience in the field of publishing, I actually contacted this person who posted this Craigslist ad for more information about the position he was offering.
I even considered the offer of the guest house as a quiet place to get some of my own writing done.
With three college degrees and having recently published "The Kitchen Dance", I felt I may have the qualifications he needed to publish his own work.
So please read on:
In the event he removes this post and link I have added a portion of his work that he posted on his website as an example of his writing skills.
Yes, when I read this I did visualize the red flags popping up everywhere, yet I persevered. I felt I could help him.
It was obvious to me that this man, acting as a mentor to an apprentice, would be the same as my teaching someone to fly an airplane because I've been a passenger in one.
Still, after speaking with this man on the phone and him telling me he was dyslexic, I wanted to help him.
He informed me that he could not pay much but expected me to work from 9-5 M-F basically taking dictation. I suggested he look into Dragon Dictate as well as other editing software options instead of paying someone to dictate (much cheaper) and I offered to run another edit on his work as he went along. He seemed pleased with that idea enough to invite me for an interview.
I prepared myself for our meeting by doing a quick edit of a portion of his work. As you can see, there was some work to be done.
As I was turning into his office at a storage facility, I knew right away that I would not be able work in this office. I would only be able to do the editing via the internet. I stood before the door with my hand on the knob and could smell the reeking odor of mold and mildew permeating the shack serving as an office.
I am not being judgmental, I am just making the observation that the construction, lack of air conditioning, and the air quality of this office was hazardous to my health.
I greeted the man with a smile but he greeted me with a disappointed look. I was not shaken though, I already knew I was not what he was looking for. I suppose he wanted someone much younger, a lot prettier, and willing to give him a blow job. HA!
Undaunted, I got straight to business showing him how I could edit his work using Microsoft Word and the internet. When he saw all the errors I found on his post, he completely shut down.
I complimented him on his story idea but informed him that he simply had to clean it up before he tried to publish.
He became very defensive and I'm lucky I got out of their alive.
He did not appreciate my "teaching" him and told me that he was not willing to learn ANYTHING new.
Look, I appreciate a creative mind. I have one. I know how deeply everything is perceived. It is was makes creative people so sensitive.
Yet, I am still open to learning from everyone and every situation. I was hoping I could find a way to reach him. It was unfortunate that he was not willing to improve his work so that it would not be an insult to readers. He is one of those "authors" that gives self-publishing a bad reputation.
Sure, it is possible to pay to publish anything you chose...but the average reader soon grows weary of dredging through garbage trying to find a plot.
Needless to say, I could not be his "apprentice" because I already knew more than he did about the publishing world and, apparently, I am too much of a "teacher" to want to work with someone who is unwilling to learn.