Frustrating profession

Discussion in 'Fantasy / Horror' started by Gary Wassner, Aug 18, 2010.

  1. Gary Wassner

    Gary Wassner GemQuest

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    Writing is a very frustrating profession. And it's so difficult to be successful at it. Well, I guess that depends upon how one measures success. That's a tough question, isn't it? How do you measure success as an author?
     
  2. Davis Ashura

    Davis Ashura Would be writer? Sure.

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    I guess that would change depending on the circumstances. If I was a new author, I'd be over-joyed to get my second, third, fourth, etc. sale. Once I was established, I would be over-joyed to hit a genre bestseller list. After that, I'd want to stay relevant.
    Yeah, I'm into being commercial. I want my books to be accessible by the largest number of people possible.
     
  3. Gary Wassner

    Gary Wassner GemQuest

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    Commercial success is the measure? How many people have really read Ulysses? Or Isherwood? Or Proust for that matter?
     
  4. Davis Ashura

    Davis Ashura Would be writer? Sure.

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    Gary, are these trick questions? I'll give it a shot anyway. Yes, for me that would be my success. As a friend of mine once mentioned, I want to write books for those with an IQ of 100. That's probably about my capability. I know my limitations as a writer.
    The rest: I've read Ulysses and didn't like it AT ALL. Haven't read the others.
    BTW Nice to see you again.
     
  5. oasis seeker

    oasis seeker Registered User

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    Personally, I really wouldn't classify those books as commercial successes. Literary successes, maybe, but not commercial (which I define as selling many copies to the general public.)

    Success is a relative term, but to me it would mean being able to support myself and my family doing the very thing I love - writing.
     
  6. Gary Wassner

    Gary Wassner GemQuest

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    Commercial success is one measure. As in any field, if no one is aware of you or appreciates what you've created, then it's not always so fulfilling. Yes, the process itself is illuminating and cathartic. But as Scott Bakker always says to me, it's the product, not the process that really matters. I'm not sure I totally agree, but....
     
  7. Davis Ashura

    Davis Ashura Would be writer? Sure.

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    Was Scott trying to be intentionally provocative with that statement? Often, when talking about some form of 'spiritual' growth, I've heard the phrase, "It's about the journey; not the destination." Scott's statement stands that sentiment on its head.
     
  8. Gary Wassner

    Gary Wassner GemQuest

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    Well, to be honest, it was always in response to my self-indulgent view of writing. I write because I want the catharsis. Scott never meant to say that product should compromise concerns about quality, but only that enjoyment of the process isn't enough.