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View Full Version : How Can You Make It as a Writer When Most Don’t?


Delilah Rehm
11-08-2007, 11:56 AM
One of the pieces of advice often given to aspiring writers is: Don’t Write. Writers in general don’t make much money. Add onto that, the whim of the market, the lack of control as to what happens once the story is out of the door, and the effort of producing and polishing a novel when there’s no “boss” standing over you making it so.

What often is lamented in writing circles is the fact that most writers don’t make it. Ever. It sounds depressing! And it is true. Most writers don’t make it, so why waist your time unless it’s in your blood? Unless you have to do it no matter what?

This is hooey! Yes, it’s true that most professional writers don’t make much money, and it’s also true that most writers never make it. The first part doesn’t really change. But the second part, well it doesn’t change either, but you should understand the reason it’s true.

First of all, of the 100% of writers who talk about writing, maybe 10% of them write. Out of that group, only 10% are willing to show anyone what they’ve written (1% of total “writers”). Of that group, only 10% learn the skills of writing, making their work good (0.1% of “writers”). Out of that tiny group, only 10% ever finish anything (0.01% of “writers”). And lastly, only a fraction of that group have the gumption to submit to agents and publishers AND endure the gobs of rejection (0.001%-0.0001% of “writers”). That’s 0.001% of people willing to do what it takes out of 100% of people who dream about being writers.

Yeah, most writers don’t make it. But if your willing to move through all of the steps, chances are, you’ll make it. I bet this is true for other kinds of careers as well.