Ah, I love blog-wandering. Thank you, awesome people, for having linkage in your margins. I do find the most awesome things sometimes...
I discovered this retake on Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, designed by writer/blogista Miranda Kenneally, at The YA-5. (The YA-5 are a team-blog of five writers, one of which is K.A. Holt of The Spectacle Blog, at which we also lurk and read about YA speculative fiction.)
Though a mere starting point in the challenge of unraveling the human psyche, the whole Maslow's thing is pretty entertaining. At least, I was entertained by it mightily in my sociology class in college. I used to identify people by where they were in the hierarchy, and was greatly amused to watch my students try to manipulate me by using the lower tier needs to disrupt the higher tier needs. (I made you these cookies! They're still hot -- don't they smell great? You liked my essay, right? I don't have to rewrite?)
We'd all like to think we're well on the ladder to self-sufficiency, creativity, acceptance, morality, and rational living, but... let's be honest, this kind of thing varies from minute to minute. As is everyone else, I'm on the ladder, but that's about all I can say.
I have to laugh at finding myself on Miranda's Hierarchy of Publishing. I'm not sure knowing how to properly use the word "irony" works as a filter - I know professional people who write and don't differentiate between "peak" and "peek" (homonym homicide), and who also believe that, due to popular usage, "irregardless" is an acceptable word. (TRUST ME: It. Is. Not. Let's not get me on my soapbox.) However, I think the lowest tier covers basic middle school English - verb conjugation and such -- and that makes sense.
I chuckled at the inclusion of John Green in the hierarchy. I stood in a room with him once, did I tell you that? He didn't know who I was from Eve. But, still. I'm on the rungs, people. I am ON MY WAY.
My main problem with this hierarchy - though it's really funny, clever, and gave me a moment of introspection as I tried to figure out my place within it - is that self-actualization is equated with winning a major literary award, and meeting Oprah. I don't know about that.
One of the things writers do is write. They write, and it doesn't matter who reads it, or who wants to read it, or who thinks it's good or bad - they fulfill their potential by writing. It's not something that has to do with external validation.
Publishing, conversely, will obviously have to have an outlet which will lead to being in print. But as we as bloggers have gone back and forth about what reviews mean to us and to the kids and young adults who read the books we discuss, I'm not convinced that awards and attention by the literati have any more meaning than someone handing you a book and saying, "Oh, my GOSH, I loved this one, and you should TOTALLY READ IT."
Actually, to me, that means more.
Not that I'm turning down meeting Oprah. Discreetly. Somewhere there are no cameras. But, you know what I mean...
Thoughts? Your own place in the hierarchy? The general awesomeness of John Green? Discuss.