Publishing isn’t everything

You don’t have to publish.

There, I’ve said it, the writerly world’s biggest heresy.

Whenever I blurt out ‘I’m a writer’, the first thing everyone asks is, “Oh! Have you published?” I honestly have no idea why I blurt this out, since I already know what I’m going to be facing, but I apparently I have a need to feel like a failure in the eyes of others.

Society says, writers are people who publish things, which is fine in it’s own way, but the actual fact is that writers are people who write things. That’s it. That this needs to be defended has more to do with how our society commodifies everything we do rather than a failure on the part of people like me.

Making a living at art is hard. The fact that in order for art to be made, it must make a living, is a tragedy.

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One thought on “Publishing isn’t everything

  1. x934z says:

    Heretic! Heretic! Burn the witch!

    It also shows how our societies define what you do or who you are as meaning your job, your paid work. If your view of yourself or your most significant occupation is not done for money, it’s either a hobby, and dismissed as frivolous, or you’re just a failure/wannabe who isn’t _serious_ about it.

    Thinking about publication is one of the things that puts me off writing. It turns it into something to be done for other people, unknowns, and makes it a chore. Mustn’t. Do this or that, it won’t Sell!

    Liked by 1 person

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