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(The Millions)   Think you'll write the great American novel some day? Here are the unfortunate stats, Hemingnoway   (themillions.com ) divider line
    More: Unlikely, Hemingnoway, Americans, narratives, young adult novels, small press, online books, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, ISBN  
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5027 clicks; posted to Main » on 31 Dec 2013 at 12:49 PM (2 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



Voting Results (Funniest)
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest

2013-12-31 01:16:39 PM  
3 votes:

dundapig: wait - Penthouse Forum doesn't count?


I write letters to Prudence with a 50% acceptance rate. That Pocket Ninja guy better not try to invade my turf there.
2013-12-31 12:55:14 PM  
3 votes:
"How you uh, how you comin' on that novel you're working on? Huh? Got a a big, uh, big stack of papers there? Got a, got a nice little story you're working on there? Your big novel you've been working on for three years? Huh? Got a, got a compelling protagonist? Yeah? Got a obstacle for him to overcome? Huh? Got a story brewing there? Working on, working on that for quite some time? Huh? Yeah, talking about that three years ago. Been working on that the whole time? Nice little narrative? Beginning, middle, and end? Some friends become enemies, some enemies become friends? At the end your main character is richer from the experience? Yeah? Yeah? No, no, you deserve some time off." - Stewie
2013-12-31 04:19:38 PM  
2 votes:
Art, if it is to vault one into the public conscious, has to be catchy.   Once you're there, it's your stage.

Gershwin got famous not for Rhapsody in Blue but for Swanee.
Who you know? Sure, there's that.  Knowing William Daly certainly came in handy, but it didn't make George's work good and it didn't make it catchy.   Do you think Al Jolson wanted to water down his stardom with something less than catchy?  No, he knew what to sell.  Key word: sell.  If money's your aim, you'll get it the same way everyone else does: by working within the rules or making the rules work for you.

That's the joke on all you who don't want to "sell out."  You think you deserve my money because you wrote something beautiful?  It doesn't work that way.  You can get rich like JP Morgan, but you'll notice he didn't leverage the unbalanced legal system to steal a non-catchy idea.  He knew what the public wanted.  If you want to write something the public don't want, go a-farking-head.  You won't get their money.  That's the "secret" to capitalism: it's trading something people want ("catchy" is just code for "something lots of people will like") for something you've convinced to want less than it (money or whatever the hell else you want from them).  If you can make your art compatible with what people want while remaining true to your principles, maybe you're as clever as you think you are.

That's why my novel, John Galt's Twilight Potter Games Bible is doing so well.
2013-12-31 01:49:58 PM  
1 vote:
whizbangthedirtfarmer:

/perhaps a FARK Writer's group would be interesting

OK
I'm an indie author, and I'd love to start a FARK Writer's group.
It would be like going into one of those bars where the hostess gets to tell you Fark Off.

/actual dirt farmer
2013-12-31 01:41:06 PM  
1 vote:
If you're good, you'll be successful. Most writers aren't very good.
2013-12-31 01:39:59 PM  
1 vote:

If Stephine Meyer can get published so can you.

2013-12-31 01:39:13 PM  
1 vote:

Dirtybird971: "How you uh, how you comin' on that novel you're working on? Huh? Got a a big, uh, big stack of papers there? Got a, got a nice little story you're working on there? Your big novel you've been working on for three years? Huh? Got a, got a compelling protagonist? Yeah? Got a obstacle for him to overcome? Huh? Got a story brewing there? Working on, working on that for quite some time? Huh? Yeah, talking about that three years ago. Been working on that the whole time? Nice little narrative? Beginning, middle, and end? Some friends become enemies, some enemies become friends? At the end your main character is richer from the experience? Yeah? Yeah? No, no, you deserve some time off." - Stewie


*punch* - Brian
2013-12-31 01:38:41 PM  
1 vote:
Somehow I doubt the "great American novel" will be sci-fi or fantasy.

And given our electorate these days, it'll probably be a children's book....perhaps coloring, but I hear scratch-'n'-sniff books are making a comeback.
2013-12-31 01:27:04 PM  
1 vote:
For those talking about convention and pandering to a reader base, take note of Infinite Jest. Released in 1996 it has been a persistent seller, although never a star. Barely sci-fi, strangely dystopian, it's full of drugs and tennis. It goes on for a thousand pages, and instead of reaching a conclusion it reaches an end, which might explain why most read copies appear to have been flung across the room.
2013-12-31 01:14:49 PM  
1 vote:
B-b-but, I wrote about incestuous vampires and fantasy plots that take miles to unravel!! Isn't that what the kids want these days?
2013-12-31 12:57:44 PM  
1 vote:
There is no hate like failed novelist hate.
2013-12-31 12:54:11 PM  
1 vote:
This author just wrote an article about his financial incentive to discourage you from writing.
2013-12-31 11:45:29 AM  
1 vote:
2012 fiction books published with an ISBN: adult fiction 67,254; YA and juvenile fiction 20,339
2012 Net book sales: $27.1 billion

So, that would mean the (mean) average book made $387,000.   That actually seems rather high, but, my guess is the "median" average would be more around $1,000, and the "mode" likely is $0 (or fairly close to 0).
 
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