"Immersion in the life of the world, a willingness to be inhabited by and to speak for others, including those beyond the realm of the human, these are the practices not just of the bodhisattva but of the writer." --Jane Hirshfield

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Midlist Oblivion

Confessions of a Semi-Successful Author, at Salon.

Jane Austen Doe tells us that writing is no way to make a living, for those of us who hadn't already heard, but she goes farther than usual -- she tells us how much she made on each of her books, how her advances affected things, and what good and ill befell her. It certainly makes one feel sympathetic to her, and other midlist authors, as well as oneself, one's friends, etc. A friend, for example, waits tables with writers who have published several books. Makes you kind of glad you took your parents' advice and finished your degree in something vaguely practical. If you did.

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