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Comment from the book world in August 2022

August 2022

It's all gravy now.'

22 August 2022

‘It's great that I can support my family by doing something that I love. It's great that I'm able to utilise the talent that was given to me and write stories that make people happy.

When I'm writing, I'm all about myself and about the reader, so that's a great thing to have. I won't say that I never in my wildest dreams dreamt of huge amounts of success, but what I really wanted was to be able to do it for a living. The rest has just been what us Americans call gravy. It's all gravy now.'

Stephen King, author of over 50 novels, novellas and short stories, including The Shining, Carrie, The Stand, It and The Shawshank Redemption with sales of over 350 million books, in the Sunday Times Culture


'Performers, salespeople and marketers'

10 August 2022

‘Gone are the days when authors could afford to be reclusive, knowing that their publishers would be active on their behalf. Nowadays, authors are routinely expected to be performers, salespeople and marketers all at the same time. And to do that, we need to let go of certain toxic narratives, not least the myth that artists shouldn't care about money or sales, or sully their art by trying to make a living...

I've had to face the fact that a certain amount of online self-promotion is not only necessary but that sometimes it's the only promotion an author is likely to get...

And yes, it takes time; but it's time well-deployed. And yes, it takes valuable time away from the actual process of writing, but it's short-sighted to look at it that way. No job ever really consists of doing just one thing. The publishing world is changing fast; authors, too, need to change to survive. And if that change entails leaving our ivory towers, engaging with our audiences and admitting that we too have bills to pay, then I say all the better.'

Joanne Harris, author of 27 books, including the bestselling Chocolat, current Chair of the Society of Authors in the UK in the Bookseller