BY JC LYNNE
Originally posted May 07, 2020
(Cue cheerful and 50s uptempo music.) Did you ever stop to think about the many kinds of living things in the world around us? There are plants and animals. On the land, in the air, and in the water, we are surrounded by LIFE. And it’s that time of year, birds are flittering. Buds are peeking. Thunder is rumbling.
Our planet’s orbit around the sun is changing. For the northern hemisphere, the days are growing longer, and the weather is getting warmer. Listen, the sounds of spring may include the song of the American Goldfinch or the rapping of the Northern Flicker. Look, do you see the bare trees in your yard showing signs of budding leaves?
Each organism has its own life cycle ensuring the birth of the next generation.
For some of us, it’s time to think about the life cycle of that elusive class of creature known as the traditionally published book.
The TPB class contains a diverse collection of organisms divided into families, genus, and species. There are no hard and fast rules to determine these differences. Some are universal, while others are more difficult to define.
One sure thing, the life cycle of the TPB class is complicated and never absolute.
As with any organisms within the Liber kingdom, the TPB begins life as pollen or seeds. The new spore germinates and grows, however, whether it reaches maturity and becomes a spore-producing organism depends on some critical factors.
The TPB gametophyte often requires a pollinator called an agent. It can take up to three years to find the pollinator compatible with a particular TPB species. Some lucky gametophytes find their pollinator more quickly.
These agents help germinate the mature spores. Another long and risky venture, this process can take another year or two or three. Because the process is so speculative, the spores that attain germination are few and far between.
I’ve found that Hollywood seems to be yes, yes, yes with little chance of production while New York (publishers) seems to be no, no, no followed by likely publication.Chuck Wendig
Reaching germination doesn’t guarantee growth. Factors such as crowding, markets, and space can lead to a failure to thrive. Shriveling the fledgling cotyledons before they can develop proper leaves or strong roots.
The life of a TPB can be cut short at any moment.
Some TPBs can begin to flower and bloom, ideally generating strong scents to attract attention. While other TBPS wither and die on the stalk without the opportunity to bear fruit.
Maybe the seeds or bulbs were overwatered. Or the root system sent out runners along some inhospitable ground. Sometimes a seedling is overwhelmed by strangleweed. It can be a dreary and competitive process despite care, water, fertilizer, or sunlight.
With the protracted duration, the capricious elements, and the dearth of surety, it’s no wonder gardeners anguish, lament, and lose faith. Those tiny little sprouts not only bring hope but trepidation.
And when those seedlings begin to deepen their roots and to develop phototropic reach, the gardener’s confidence isn’t improved by well-meaning bystanders saying, “It’s about time.”
Query Craft: The Writer-in-The-Know Guide by Angie Hodapp
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