>what does it take to be a successful writer? (A writer who can live off the money
they make from their book(s))
Is it something you are just born able to do? Can anyone be a successful writer if they put the time into it? Or is it an equal mix of both?
What do all famous writers have in common?
>what do all famous writers have in common?
a fixed sum of talent (x), accessibility (y), and luck (z). x+y+z=100
you are born with talent
you can learn accessibility
no one has a handle on luck
>what does it take to be a successful writer? (A writer who can live off the money they make from their book(s))
Naturally want to create the kind of book that the market wants.
The skill needed to make a marketable novel is attainable by any average person who is willing to put in the work, which boils down to writing a lot and getting useful critique. This is pretty easy, as long as you have the work ethic.
The only major obstacle is for writers who insist on writing unmarketable works, or writers who would prefer to write something unmarketable but force themselves to conform.
I liked that book. And do you think most successful writers had to change a lot about their books, so as to be likable by more people?
There's editing involved in any successful novel, but publishers can just choose writers who don't need to make fundamental changes.
Since you have awful taste, you could probably have a career writing for children and neckbeards.
In any given decade there will spawn perhaps one or two great writers, compared to a multitude of successful writers. Look at E.L. James, JKR, Suzanne Collins, Stephanie Meyers, Veronica Roth, GRRM, John Grisham, Tom Clancy, etc. that have come about in the past 20-30 years. In that same span, who emerged as a "great" and "serious" novelist? Probably just DFW, memes aside (unless anyone knows other recent greats).
There will always be more successful authors because 1) larger audience, and 2) easier to produce a "successful" novel, i.e., one that panders to the common man's sensibilities. But yes, it is harder to be a famous author. It requires more talent and more dedication.
Knock it all you want but there's honor in writing children's books. A lot more than most genres.
Anybody whose livelihood is successfully getting children to start reading and enjoy it, perhaps giving them a good laugh or two is alright in my book.
Of course this is a viewpoint I've only started to take in my 30's. When I was younger I used to think just as you do, that writing children's books is for plebs.
>is it something you are born just able to do
No. Give a pen and paper to any newborn and I guarantee none of them will produce a great work of fiction. The idea of "talent" is just a way for people justifying not trying. The truth is, as long as you're of decent intelligence and able-bodied you can become a master of literary anything, granted that you put in the time and the effort.