Dear New York,
I used to love you. Revere you, even. You had my kind of celebrities: Murakami, Ellroy, Roberts, Allende, even Grisham and Crichton.
I imagined you as kings, semi-benevolent overlords on your glass and steel thrones, dictating what us peons were to read. And you gave us choices! Such choices, from high-brow literary to bodice-ripper paperbacks we’d hide in shame. Our choices felt infinite, and I never once dwelled on the fact you own the market. That any interloper was swiftly executed.
It started slowly. First were the books of essays and “advice” written by Hollywood’s funny people (and I’ll admit to reading one or two and enjoying them). I didn’t think much of it. I still don’t.
Then you brought in the book deals with the starlets and reality TV show cast offs, which may or may not have been ghost written by someone only marginally more intelligent than the person they were supposedly “written” by.
Lucky for you, that doesn’t matter much. You’ve got me cornered and caged, without any other options. See, if I want to continue reading those glorious feats of literary wonder, I have to buy what you’re selling. You’ve got the distributors all locked up. Because of your long-standing reputation, the masses will continue to flock to you. It sickens me, that I have to continue forking over my hard earned money to help keep you bohemoths afloat.
But change is coming. Change is already here. Change is encroaching on that largest market share of all. See, not all of those interlopers are going away. Some are thriving. They give hope to other genres they might be the next David to your Goliath.
You, my dear kings, are not changing fast enough. You have spread yourself too thin, stretched yourself too far, and the peons are making inroads on your territory.