Picture: Interior of the Iron Door Saloon, est. 1852; the oldest continuously operating saloon in the state, Groveland, California
I admit my frustration level has been met and exceeded. For nearly a decade working with Galen Rowell, running his stock department, I dealt with clients of every level, including editors at just about every major magazine and ad agency in the country. I prided myself on my professionalism. I know how to present myself. It’s not like I’m some newbie / wannabe whose closest publication credit is posting images on flickr. Even when doing my previous books, whenever I’d call or email someone saying I’m working on such and such project, I’d almost always get a warm, welcoming, and helpful response.
However, with my current book project, the minute I tell people (or they sense) that it’s a history book, they fall asleep. They turn off. They tune out. They switch off their radar. It’s like you suddenly become a non-important entity. In all of my career, I’ve never experienced anything like this. But it’s happened so often, among so many people at so many levels, that I’m now 1000% convinced that it’s purely related to the history aspect. Sure, there are still people that are nice and helpful, or that reply quickly. But so many of people that I’ve been in touch with, or attempted to contact, have either not responded at all, or replied once, and then I couldn’t get anything further out of them. It’s like I asked them to come in and voluntarily have some of their teeth pulled.
I just don’t get it. With some of them I just say “fine” and they’re not in my book. Others I really want to include, but after a half dozen attempts to contact them, I just can’t afford to waste more time chasing windmills.
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