Why is this shark smiling?
Because he’s going to eat your career.
It’s not news to us writers that the world of publishing is undergoing a great upheaval. Some good, some less so. But regardless, it is changing.
And since there is profit in chaos, predators take advantage of this confusion. Maybe it’s an agent that charges reading fees. A publisher who asks writers to pay for book production. A publicist that promises to get you “out there” and then does little. Or perhaps a contract that looks good but in the end gobbles up your hard work like a Great White Shark. And many more scams, often very well disguised.
What’s a writer to do? Like everything else in life, educate yourself so you will know what lies in these treacherous waters. A recent article by Elizabeth S. Craig is a good starting point.
Keep you eyes open and always ask questions. If you don’t like the answers you get, turn the page and walk away. In the long run, you’ll win.