books by Betsy Lerner

Speaking of ranters, today I’d like to introduce to you a writer I adore. Like me, she writes a blog for people who like to read, write, and think. Unlike me, she doesn’t restrict her rants to Christmas Day. They come all year round! And if you happen to be a writer, she’s def someone to have on your radar.

Betsy Lerner is a rare bird in the NYC publishing industry, because she’s seen it from three diverse perspectives: she is a former editor, turned literary agent, who’s also a successful author of three nonfiction books. Wow, what a career! I’m swooning right now . . . or I would be, if I wasn’t a reader of hers. Because she’d probably laugh, if I swooned. She’s not the type to appreciate idolatrous swooning.

In fact, that’s what her latest (as of the time I write this) blog post is about. It’s about the ridiculous airs that people in the publishing industry (and elsewhere) sometimes put on. I laughed so hard when I read it. I laughed, and I thought, I need to share this with others. This is awesome.

The post is called And It Wouldn’t Be Make Believe if You Believed in Me; the title, per usual, is a lyric from a song. A seemingly random lyric from a seemingly random song. This particular lyric is from a song (sung—see the comments below for more info!) by Ella Fitzgerald. I can’t, per usual, discern any connection between this lyric/song and the blog post.

The blog post’s image does correspond—to the post’s opening gambit, if nothing else. But don’t mind the title and image, just read and laugh. Also don’t mind any editorial messiness. Lerner knows what she’s doing editorially, but she’s (presumably!) too interested in her subject matter to bother about all those punctuation marks. (who needs them anyway right)

If you subscribe to her email list, you will, like me, experience the irregularly timed delight of receiving her very short posts in your inbox. Readers are sometimes blessed to receive these emails daily, but then weeks will go by without a word. You will wonder what she’s up to, and then, one day, surprise!—a post will appear at some unconventional hour.

If you decide to leap into these waters, be warned: Lerner’s posts are cantankerous! In all truth, I regularly disagree with her viewpoints. I guess I’m more of a sunny-side-up kind of girl. However, I always, always, appreciate Lerner’s honesty, perceptiveness, and gloriously fresh and rough use of language.

Also check out her three books: The Forest for the Trees, Food and Loathing, (both of which I read and loved, many years ago) and The Bridge Ladies (which I haven’t gotten to yet).*


*I don't write this to virtually kiss up, nor am I affiliated with Lerner in any way. As I mentioned previously, kissing up wouldn't work with her anyway. If I thought it would, I would've done it a loooooong time ago. . . .