Your secret path to wealth and fame
Advice to any aspiring artist on instant, everlasting success.
So you’ve decided to pursue a career in writing. Perfect timing. There’s never been more job openings at magazines and newspapers. Opportunities just bristle for any creator. Your family must be so thrilled. Especially your spouse.
No doubt they applauded your announcement and held a toast in your honor. Nobody rolled their eyes, or asked if you were feeling okay.
Your dad didn’t ask, “What happened to med school?”
Sure, you wait tables at Chili’s right now. But everybody starts somewhere. I bet you could write a really exciting memoir about that.
Everyone’s going to be so supportive. When your first novel comes out six months from now, your friends will definitely attend your book launch. Your hand will cramp from all the autographs.
Editors won’t hesitate to assign you stories. They’ll reply to all your email queries on the same day. You’ll have more freelance gigs than you can handle. All of your work will appear in print.
Writers’ Market. What’s that? You don’t need that.
Same goes for Poets & Writers. Actually, just create a LinkedIn profile. Let the editors come to you.
You’re going to make so much money. Soon, you’ll start a blog and build up a massive following. You’ll figure out exactly what makes a post go viral. The views will roll right in.
But just in case that doesn’t happen, here’s some advice. When I say advice, I’m starting all the way from scratch — the first moment you think you might want to earn money from writing. I’ll cover everything in less than ten minutes.
1. Go to Harvard
Maybe you’ve noticed that writers with fancy degrees have an easier time racking up bylines. They’ll tell you otherwise, but that’s a lie. You have to earn a degree from a Top 10 school. Do whatever it takes.
Take out a ton of loans. Or poison your rich uncle. If you go with option two, confirm your place in his will first.
2. Die clutching your manuscript
Let’s imagine you can’t attend an Ivy League school. That’s okay. Other paths lie ahead, like posthumous success. Go ahead and start working on your masterpiece. When that’s done, go sit on a park bench and die.
Just will yourself out of existence, like an old Jedi.
Actually, that sounds kind of dark. Don’t die. Fake your death.
Recent studies have shown that dead authors have a higher success rate than living ones. People feel sad that you died in obscurity, so they’re more likely to buy your book.
And they’re more forgiving of plot holes.
If you try this method, wrap your manuscript in string. Or put it inside a box. You don’t want it blowing away.
3. Network like you own the place
Maybe you don’t want to die just yet. That’s okay. Go to writers’ conferences with trash bags full of manuscripts. Hand them out to anyone who looks like an agent or editor.
Introduce yourself to everyone you meet as a published author. Start and end every conversation by winking and shooting them with your index finger. That’s class. Nobody else has the guts to act like that. There’s something different about you.
Cozy up to a famous writer, or even a semi well-known one. Tag them in all of your posts. If they ignore you, it’s not because they’re busy. They obviously think they’re better than you.
You should cut off your ear and send it to them.
If you can’t find their mailing address, then send them a photo. And if you’d rather not actually cut off your ear, you can buy a fake one. Trust me, they’ll get the idea.
4. Start 7 blogs
Okay, so networking didn’t help just yet. Start a blog. No, start three. No, start seven. The more blogs you run, the better. Create different names for yourself. One of them’s bound to catch an agent’s attention.
Update your blogs every two hours. Anyone who follows you will have no choice but to click on one of your posts.
You don’t need to spend that much time with each story. You’re brilliant. Anything you write has the potential to go viral. You just need to keep updating as much as possible.
It’s like playing a slot machine. Just keep inserting coins. One day, the cherries will align and views will rain down on you like quarters.
5. Create a Wix site
Nobody takes a writer seriously unless they have a sparking website, full of stock images of writers and forests. Or coffee. Or all three.
Look at me. I don’t have my own website, and nobody takes me seriously. Also, I didn’t go to Harvard. So I’m in real trouble here. Actually, my only hope is that this post goes viral.
Anyway, you don’t need to know how to use the Internet to build a website. Just hire someone else to do it. Writers don’t need job skills, after all. Put the bill on your credit card. You’ll pay it off later.
Finally, list every single publication that ever mentioned your name. Before I read anything by someone, I make sure they’ve published at least ten articles first. If you’re lacking, just make some up.
I’m serious about the stock images. You’ll need at least eight.
Also, a cool signature helps. Display it prominently. A bold signature says a lot about the kind of writer you are.
6. Develop an addiction
Maybe you already have one. That’s great! If not, I strongly recommend sex or hard drugs. That’ll give you some street cred, and something interesting to write about.
Coffee and alcohol are passe. Who isn’t addicted to coffee?
On that note, limit your writing to sex, drugs, sexuality, morning routines, or women’s issues. Or just use those words in your titles. Alternately, you can write about how only these posts get traffic.
7. Stop reading completely
Successful writers don’t waste their time reading classic works of literature. Or even other people’s blogs. If they do, it’s only to gain attention for themselves.
You don’t have time to read. Why, just look at your morning routine, and your evening routine. Those take up a lot of time.
8. Solipsism is key
Maybe some readers want to be entertained, or educated. But others just enjoy hearing writers whine about their stats, or how long it takes to become successful. Complain as much as you can.
Think about it. Why would someone settle for a concise, well-researched article on sleep habits or relationships, when they could read about how hard your day was? I don’t know about you, but I know what I’m in the mood for. Always make yourself the central focus of your writing.
Better yet, create a character based on yourself. Give them all your problems. People love thinly-veiled, emotive fiction.
Sometimes, you just have to show them how much you suffer for your art. Then they’ll see. You’re not like everyone else. You’re different. So different that nobody could ever understand.
Whatever you do, don’t tell a story. Or craft a narrative. Your main job is to emote. Create a soap opera with your words. Follow all these steps, and you’ll succeed within a calendar year. If you don’t, you should probably give up. Or return to options 1 and 2. Probably option 2.