I got into this discussion with my friend about writing. I told him I would like to make a living off my writing, but he said I should concentrate on writing for the enjoyment of it and not earning money. I disagree. It's a given that I enjoy writing. I don't need to work at that. But it'd be nice to supplement my income with a modest writing career. But should I feel guilty for wanting to make a name for myself before I leave this world? I'm not too much into the celebrity thing. I think it's overrated. Raising a child is infinitely more important than being in the global spotlight. And I love being a dad. Anyway...
Why do you write: money, fame, enjoyment, all or none?
September 26th, 2005, 02:49 PM
I would love to write as a career, though that's only because I love reading so much. If I ever managed to produce work with the potential to do well I would have them published but not really in view of making money - more with the idea of making a contribution to the writing world.
I can only imagine the amazing feeling of seeing your book published and sold in the likes of Waterstones and other stores. Just the other day I saw Scott Bakker's 'The Darkness That Comes Before' in Borders for which I couldn't help feeling proud - simply because he's a member here :D
So, to answer the question I would write for enjoyment and be more than happy if my work got somewhere, but I wouldn't write solely to make money, especially if I didn't enjoy it - the same would go for anything I do.
September 26th, 2005, 04:11 PM
Compulsion, addiction, therapy
that, and plain old fun... :cool:
September 26th, 2005, 04:25 PM
I'm not sure whether it was Orson Scott Card or David Gerrold, but one of them said that if you are writing with financial motivations in mind, you ought to quit straight away. The idea is that this should not be your primary motivation (if a motivational factor at all) and that making a living from writing is extremely difficult.
For me personally, I write because it's one of the few things I can do that I feel I am good at, with the potential to get even better. I love music, and I'm a competant guitar player but am not great. I love football but am an average player. I love poker but am an average player. I love online gaming but am an average player. You see a pattern emerging? Writing is different - I feel I have some potential locked away and I just want to try and unlock it, and have some fun on the way. :)
September 26th, 2005, 07:22 PM
The creative compulsion? The need to control a world... any world... and make sense of it all? Or at least to highlight the contradictions of humanity and life? But mainly to be an entertainer, albeit a shy entertainer.
Money, fame, enjoyment? Nup. Can't see where they fit into writing.
September 26th, 2005, 07:38 PM
My philosophy - and I've stated it here many times over the last few years - is that any writer who writes for financial gain is not a true writer. In my opinion, writing should be done first and foremost for the author's own enjoyment, and then for their readers' enjoyment.
Anything above and beyond that is purely a bonus.
The biggest rewards any writer should seek is the wonderful feeling you have when a work is completed, and then the subsequent feedback you receive for your work from others.
The best payment I ever received personally was an email from one of my readers who said that one of my novels had moved her to tears. :)
September 26th, 2005, 11:50 PM
Oh yes... there's the enjoyment. I enjoy "having" written. The process of writing isn't that enjoyable. I think it's because I know too much and it makes my brain hurt. I was told that if it didn't hurt, I was doing it wrong... and now I understand.
September 27th, 2005, 01:20 AM
Know a few "published writers" most do other jobs to live. A married couple who do make their living out of writing once told me that they write the things they have to (like scripts for kids cartoon shows) to be able to write the things they want too.
September 27th, 2005, 02:34 AM
Imagine having to write scripts for children's cartoons! Get hold of your friends. Tell them I have half a dozen non-fic things I'll swap for one children's cartoon script! :eek:
September 27th, 2005, 07:11 AM
Getting past the fact that, at this point, I'd simply be happy to FINISH something, I know I'll never be able to support my self by simply writing fiction (that's why I write thrilling technical documentation and truely gripping marketing copy). But that really doesn't bug me much. I don't know if I really even 'enjoy' writing, or if I'm just compelled to write. I know its more than a hobby for me (such as sailing, martial arts and driving), simply because I enjoy all those things. I write because I've got to use these silly little worlds I'm always dreaming up.
I'd be very happy to see a book of mine on a shelf at some point before I die..especially if that book has my face transposed on some beefy barbarian's body...and there's like a 'totally hot' chick clinging to me leg..ya, that'd be cool.
And as far as fame goes- are even the most well-known spec-fi writers truely famous? I mean, I've never seen pictures of Robert Jordan at the Playboy Mansion...