Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Reading, Writing & Publishing ~

Tag Archives: Grub Street Daily

Want To Be A Bestselling Author? ~ Don’t Read This Blog . . .


In fact, if you want to be a bestselling author, don’t read any blogs, don’t listen to any of the self-professed experts, don’t use social media, and don’t self-publish—just make a deal with the devil

There is no “path to success” as a writer.

There is no sure-fire way to sell lots of books.

Let me share some quotes from past posts to convince those who saw “Don’t Read This Blog . . .” and are still reading.

From Bad Advice for Writers = Most Advice for Writers:

“Someone is a writer and writes a book—no, wait—wants to write a book.

“That someone looks at the publishing landscape and realizes the intended years of effort to create the book could be followed by many more years of the book not selling, even if they self-publish, even if they spend every waking hour doing social media, even if they can afford to pay a publicist, even if they find a magician who specializes in spells woven ’round readers hearts

“Perhaps, to salvage the self-esteem of aspiring writers, there need to be other options than sales and money to keep their artistic boat afloat?”

I then go on to quote some of those options from electronic bindery.

From What Are A Writer’s Odds of “Success”?:

“Who made it seem success wasn’t merely the next stage, from which further action becomes possible, but rather a pinnacle of achievement that leaves all other contenders breathless on the sides of the conquered mountain? So, who did that? Businesspeople? Fundamentalist religious folk? Football coaches?”

“’Success’ comes from roots that mean ‘come close after’.

“Society has boosted its meaning to something like ‘beat all the odds…”

I share some interesting thoughts in that post from author William Dietrich.

From Lies Writers Tell Themselves (And, Each Other):

An article in grub street daily lists these lies:

1. You’re only a successful writer if you’re published by paying markets, such as the magazines that you can buy in Barnes & Noble.

2. You’re only a successful writer if you’ve published a book-length work with a big publishing house.

3. It is hard to write a book, but if it is good, you’ll easily get it published and earn money from the royalties.

4. If you don’t publish a book, you can’t write very well and you’re certainly not a professional.

5. If you’re not earning large amounts of money, you’re not successful in terms of your career.

6. If you self-publish, it means you aren’t talented and/or professional.

From What About All The Authors Whose Books Don’t Sell Very Many Copies?:

Tobias Buckell says:

“Making a living off art is hard.

“But that isn’t a sexy sell.

“That isn’t to say you should give up. Fuck that. But I am going to say: get ready to work, don’t expect riches. Focus hard on the art….

“There’s a lot of snake oil sales going on. And a lot of well meaning people who won the lottery telling everyone to go buy lottery tickets while financial advisors shake their head.

“Pretty much the same as its always been

“PS: this survivorship bias also works for writing advice about ‘how to write’ if you think about it

So

If you got hooked by that part of the title that said “Don’t Read This Blog” and you’re still reading, I do hope you’ll check out those past posts and read them—cure yourself of dreams of having a bestseller and get to work on your writing—Your Writing, not what you think will sell

And

If you do write a book that becomes a bestseller, make sure you live through the experience without selling your soul

Now, for a QuizWhat’s Wrong With This Video? ~ (While there’s certainly some interesting information and, possibly, even some “valuable” information in it, What’s Wrong With It ?)

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Are You A Successful, Unpublished Author?


successful unpublished writer Does it seem like the title of this post has a mistake in it?

Do “Successful” and “Unpublished” go together??

What is “Success” for a writer???

From another perspective, is a writer successful if they are consistently writing—honing their craft—expressing their creativity—perfecting their art—but, not publishing?

Try this conversation on for size:

~~~

Jane:  “So, you’re a writer, are you, Sarah?  Where are you published?”

Sarah:  “Actually, I’m glad you asked.  You see, I’ve chosen not to publish my work as yet.”

Jane:  “Oh.  Okay.  Well, why is that?”

Sarah:  “I don’t want to just publish anything.  I want to really hone my craft.  I’m serious, you see, like Van Gogh.  Did you know that he only sold three paintings in his lifetime?  But think how he’s affected the world.”

Jane:  “Wow, I didn’t know that!  But I guess it makes good sense.  So, what are you working on at the moment?”

~~~

That chat between Jane and Sarah, from grub street daily, is just one example of how a successful writer who has yet to publish can reshape the conversation about what they’re up to :-)

The article over on grub street is Pep Talk: Ways to Announce That You’re a Successful, Unpublished Writer (And Have The World Agree).

I encourage you to go read the whole article, especially if you’re a hard-working writer who has not yet published.

Actually, even if you are published, you’ll benefit from reading it, if only to share it with fellow writers who haven’t yet published.

One more excerpt I’ll share from the article is a list of LIES:

1. You’re only a successful writer if you’re published by paying markets, such as the magazines that you can buy in Barnes & Noble.

2. You’re only a successful writer if you’ve published a book-length work with a big publishing house.

3. It is hard to write a book, but if it is good, you’ll easily get it published and earn money from the royalties.

4. If you don’t publish a book, you can’t write very well and you’re certainly not a professional.

5. If you’re not earning large amounts of money, you’re not successful in terms of your career.

6. If you self-publish, it means you aren’t talented and/or professional.

You might also want to check out their other site Grub Street.org :-)

[EDIT]Please read the first Comment on this post by “Once”………
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