Is it possible that your life is a reality TV show and you’re the star, producer, and director? In an engaging, prophetic article in the “Insight” section of the Sunday San Francisco Chronicle (1/23), Michael Bernick, a former director of the California Employment Development Department, who blogs about jobs in the state, wrote about how reality TV shows reflect the future of California’s economy.
In the coming post-Great Recession job world, most openings won’t be for knowledge workers. They’ll be for “personal and home aides, retail salespeople, cashiers, waiters and waitressses, food preparation workers, and customer service workers.”
But the stars of Cake Boss, Ameican Pickers, Pimp My Ride, Project Runway, and other reality TV shows provide examples of low-tech workers whose careers are based on “craft, business as a calling, service, and entrepreneurship.” These are essential strengths for writers as well. The Cake Boss Buddy Valastro says: “I’ll redo a cake 10 times if I have to….I will do what I have to do to get the job done.”
His business is his calling. Let his dedication to his craft and serving his customers be a model for you.
Is writing your calling?
Will you do whatever it takes to write and promote your book, and build your platform and communities?
Will you put your career in the service of your readers?
How many times will you rewrite your book to make sure it’s right?
- J. K. Rowling rewrote the first chapter of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone fifteen times.
- Colleen McCullough rewrote the thousand-page manuscript for her bestseller The Thorn Birds ten times…on a typewriter.
- To completely rewrite Memoirs of a Geisha three times took Arthur Golden nine years.
- Ernest Hemingway rewrote the last page of For Whom the Bell Tolls thirty-nine times. When someone asked him what the problem was, he said: “Getting the words right.”
How simple that sounds! All you have to do to write a salable book is get the words right. If you want to take the cake, you can’t be half-baked about how you hone your craft and build your future. Take whatever time your need to preheat the oven by emulating successful authors who write books like yours. Be the Cake Boss of your career. On with the show!
The Eighth San Francisco Writers Conference / A Celebration of Craft, Commerce & Community / President’s Day Weekend, February 18-20, 2011 / Mark Hopkins InterContinental Hotel on Nob Hill / Keynoters: Dorothy Allison & David Morrell / Pitch your book to agents and editors / Free feedback on your work / www.sfwriters.org / firstname.lastname@example.org / blog: http://sfwriters.org/blog / Open to anyone: a day of in-depth classes on Monday, February 21 / Free MP3s at www.sfwriters.info / New! San Francisco Writers University: Where Writers Meet and You Learn, a project of the San Francisco Writers Conference / Laurie McLean, Dean / www.sfwritersu.com