Why not be a writaaaaaargh?

The “Why not be a writer?” ads are everywhere, and while most of the success stories are crap – “I’ve had three letters published in Bathwater Collector Monthly!” – others are more impressive: sign up for this course and you could get a £25K advance for your novel!

Many such claims, though, seem to be – fittingly enough – made up, as this superb post from The Triforce shows:

Or there’s Jon Eagle, whose testimony mentions that he was paid an advance of £25,000 for this. Except that’s published by Minerva Press, which is a vanity press that was closed down in 2002 according to Wikipedia (which is a website resource for journalists, in case you haven’t heard of it).

2 thoughts on “Why not be a writaaaaaargh?

  1. Tim Worstall says:

    There is of course a much easier way of becoming a writer. Start blogging. Whack up a few thousand words each day (good practise that), ignore the critiques that turn up in the comments and in, oooh, only three years or so you too an be making a pittance as a writer. No fees involved.

    Hey, it worked for me.

  2. Gary says:

    Oh, absolutely. Fair enough specific training – using Quark, editing video, whatever – for specific jobs, but a course on how to write for pay? Particularly when the pitch is essentially “do this and then wait for the cash to come rolling in”. If hackery were well paid you wouldn’t see music writers’ promo CDs in the record and tape exchange :)

    Which reminds me, I really need to do a post about motivational business courses…

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