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Likely Stories

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Keir Graff and editors from Booklist's adult and youth departments write candidly about books, book reviewing, and the publishing industry

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Wednesday, August 22, 2007 1:45 pm
I Would Have Guessed “Ice-Cream Taster”
Posted by: Keir Graff

Maybe it’s the Rowling factor, but “More Britons dream about becoming an author than any other job,” reports a new survey reported in the Guardian (“Writing tops poll of ideal jobs,” by Michelle Pauli). I’d love to see whether the Stateside stats are similar.

Of course, as a sometime struggling author myself, I have to note that, for most of us, the financial compensations of authorship don’t rise to a level that most people would recognize as making it a “job” — there’s enough work to call it that, of course, but only the most gifted and the most fortunate can live by the word processor alone.

But as someone who loves to write, I can see why other people want to do it, too. (And the cocktail-party cred is tremendous.) But the cynic in me (I call him “Ranulph”) must note that, as previously footnoted, most Americans believe they could write a book despite the fact that they rarely read books — which is probably part of the reason why the pay is so bad. Hopefully the British score better on that one.

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One Response to “I Would Have Guessed “Ice-Cream Taster””
  1. Book Blog - Likely Stories, by Keir Graff - Booklist Online » Blog Archive » Your Glamorous Career in Writing Says:

    [...] John Crace (Guardian books blog, “Don’t give up the day job“) with a bit of perspective on the dream of becoming a writer. Not that it’s hard to find this kind of perspective, but it never hurts to hear it again. Wait a minute, it does hurt. Reminds me of the line in Spinal Tap where the band is gazing upon the grave of Elvis Aaron Presley — too much perspective. [...]


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