Can a persistent writer win against the odds?

Can a persistent writer win against the odds?
Young modern African American college student studying with the help of a laptop
Young modern African American college student studying with the help of a laptop

Ardain Isma

The answer to this question seems easy. However, in the literary world, nuances and self-centrism are never overtly expressed. Like the old saying, what can’t be openly said is practically demonstrated in actions, not in words. I don’t usually talk about this because I always feel I would be flagged—the rebel against the order of the day. I am not, for I wholeheartedly believe in both literary and commercial success for any writer who wants to share with the world his literary talent through an industry that, despite the odds, continues to flourish. According to the Association of American Publishers (AAP), the publishing industry earned 26.7 billion dollars in 2018. Read the facts here.  I’m sure this figure does not include vanity publishers who prey on writers’ urge to publish, their innocence and emotion.

So, piercing through this thick fog of uncertainty almost feels like winning the lotto. Every rejection brings with it a soured feeling of worthless. But you’ll be shooting yourself in the foot if you let someone who doesn’t even know you to have such power over you—more importantly, over something you’ve spent months if not years to produce. To sign you in, agents and publishers alike must make a strategic decision. Is your book salable? If they think the answer is no, then they move on to the next submissions, for they are plenty. Don’t take it as a personal offense. That’s the harsh reality. Don’t let this break you down. Quitters never win. And if one day you’re one of the winners, you’ll quickly find out that indeed you CAN live off your writing career.

Note: Ardain Isma is a novelist and editing manager at CSMS Magazine . He heads the Center for Strategic and Multicultural Studies. He also teaches Introduction to Research Studies at Embry Riddle University. To see his books, click here.

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