Authors Answer 147 – Considering Economic Factors When Writing

I’m not sure I even understand the relationship between length and profitability well enough for thinking about it to accomplish anything anyway.

I Read Encyclopedias for Fun

Creativity is probably the leading reason authors write. They want to create stories that people enjoy. But how much does economics factor into writing books? There are several factors that may figure into how a person writes, including book length and more. This week’s question comes from Gregory S. Close.

Question 147 – Do you write purely creatively, or do you consider economic factors, such as how long the book will be, and how that would effect production/distribution costs?

C E Aylett

Purely creatively. If you approach it from the other direction you are boxing in your muse. And there’s nothing worse than a story that feels contrived to fit size (think of TV series Game of Thrones — wouldn’t we have liked a little more time to develop the Jon/ Dany relationship? Now it feels inauthentic because it wasn’t afforded the proper amount of time to develop, unlike him…

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How Long Did It Take To Write The World’s Most Popular Books? [Infographic]…

There’s something hilarious about 50 Shades of Gray taking longer to write than Twilight…

5 years and counting on my first one. At least I’m in good company.

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

From LifeHacker site:

Did you know it took J.R.R Tolkien approximately 16 years to write some obscure trilogy of novels called The Lord of the Rings? Clocking in at over 500,000 words, that’s no real surprise. But how long do you think it took to write some of the other popular books in human history?
This infographic comes courtesy of printerinks and is an expertly-designed look at how long some of the biggest names in literature took to write their books. Of particular interest to me is George R R Martin’s five years on Game of Thrones… No wonder Winds of Winter is taking an age. Please finish the book, George!

I also had no idea that John Boyne’s The Boy In Striped Pyjamas was written in such a short amount of time! Apparently Boyne barely even slept until he was done with the first draft. Incredible stuff. It’s not…

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Authors Answer 146 – Being Charitable

Education is vital to everything else.

I Read Encyclopedias for Fun

A lot of the big authors support charitable causes or projects. They could be for education, poverty, medical, or many other causes. With plenty of money from contracts and book sales, many authors want to use the money for some good. This week’s question comes from C E Aylett.

Question 146 – If you became a big-name author, like Rowling or Lee Child, what personal projects would you pursue/create with your fame and fortune? What causes would you support?

H. Anthe Davis

I’ve never looked into this, as I doubt it would happen, but I generally support environmental causes so I’m sure I’d start there. And probably give grants to some library systems.

Tracey Lynn Tobin

I am a huge, huge, HUGE fan of the “Always Keep Fighting” campaign that was created by Jared Padalecki of the Supernatural TV show. Padalecki has suffered a great deal from anxiety and depression…

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Authors Answer 145 – Tropes and Cliches

Most plots can’t even be summarized without mentioning a trope or two, especially in genre fiction.

I Read Encyclopedias for Fun

What’s the difference between a trope and a cliche? In literature, a trope is the use of figures of speech, basically. But it can also refer to common themes to various genres (for example, dark lords and the chosen one type of hero in fantasy). But that sounds like a cliche, doesn’t it? However, a cliche is something that is overused so that it loses its original meaning. This week, we’re talking about that, and the question comes from Gregory S. Close.

Question 145 – Do you avoid tropes and/or cliche in your writing? Why or why not?

Cyrus Keith

Tropes and cliches are WAY too much fun to totally leave behind. Overuse can make a story boring and pat. But if your can combine tropes into something totally new, you can do magic with it. Just learn that fine line on which to balance.

D. T. Nova

I avoid…

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Authors Answer 144 – The Writer’s Ego

You need to have confidence in your work, but whether it’s good or bad to trust your own judgment of it above everyone else’s is partially dependent on it’s own quality.

I Read Encyclopedias for Fun

Everyone has an ego, right? The ego is an interesting thing. Some people have a big ego and think very highly of themselves. Others are the opposite, and don’t have much of an ego. They still have an ego, though. It has to do with self-esteem as well as self-importance. But we usually hear about the self-importance part. So, how does it affect authors? This week’s question is from Eric Wood.

Question 144 – Does having a big ego help or hinder a writer?

C E Aylett

I’m sure there have been cases of both — the genius who knows it to be so and is uncompromising in taking advice from others ‘beneath’ him/her and wins out in producing a masterpiece and the humble author who listens openly to suggestions and takes on board what fits with what s/he’s trying to accomplish.

However, in most acknowledgements in most novels, credit…

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Authors Answer 143 – The First Book Advance

How common are advances large enough to raise this question, anyway?

I Read Encyclopedias for Fun

Writing books is a job. Most authors do it with the hope that they can become a full time author, and be able to support themselves on the income they receive. But that first advance is a big milestone in any author’s career. This week’s question comes from our very own C E Aylett.

I would also like to take a moment and thank Beth Aman for her contributions in the past year. She’s going to college, and will be concentrating on that. Good luck, Beth!

Question 143 – What would you/did you spend your first book advance on?

Linda G. Hill

I would spend my advance getting myself out of debt. …wait, how much are we talking? More than $30,000? I’ll probably go out for coffee.

Cyrus Keith

Probably a car. I’ve never had a car that I didn’t have to spend dark, cold evenings in my driveway effecting…

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Authors Answer 142 – Becoming Famous

In any case, any potential downside falls into the category of “problems I’d like to have”.

I Read Encyclopedias for Fun

The vast majority of authors never become famous. They never have a bestseller. They are pretty much unknown. But many authors dream of making it big, becoming one of those authors who is a household name. But how would we handle that newfound fame?

Question 142 – How do you think you would handle fame if your books become as popular as authors like Stephen King?

C E Aylett

I’m a pretty sociable person so I’d probably be far too open for my own good! I’d also like to think I’d keep my feet on the ground and just keep on being me, with perks.

H. Anthe Davis

Authors are hardly rock stars, so I wouldn’t think the pressure of fame would be excessive. There would likely be convention appearances and book signings, so my antisocial little self might have trouble maintaining a pleasant face, but I’ve manned a sales…

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