Sure, I came into the business starry-eyed. I was going to write the classic novel: compelling characters, crisp dialogue, intricate plot…the works! And it was going to sell by the box lo and I had already imagined who was going to star in the lead role of the movie version (it was John Cusack).
And then I came crashing down to Earth.
Not to put down the merits of my first novel, Raincloud. It was pretty good, if I may say so myself. But I’m not exactly flying first-class to my next book signing.
I read somewhere that novelists have to write four modestly selling books per year to live at the poverty line. Can you imagine writing under such duress? Wouldn’t the stress of knowing your rent has to be paid solely by novel royalties ruin the passion for you?
Sure, journalists write for money all the time. But they’re usually writing non-fiction (such as in news reporting) or submitting opinion columns. With novels, it’s all on the author. There isn’t even a cigar-chomping editor over your shoulder to motivate you.
So my point is that if you want to write fiction for money, start by doing it on the side until you write that blockbuster. Keep your day job.
I’ve learned to write simply because I love to tell stories. And that, dear reader, is the best reason of all.
If you’re a writer, write. And if you’re a reader, keep reading. We need you!
Richard Todd is an author, blogger, and Social Media guy. Plus a few other things that get lost in the clutter. Visit him online at www.richard-todd.com.