Thursday, March 5, 2009
Does She Live in a Mansion?
I was talking to a friend yesterday, a non-writing friend. We were talking about my novels and I mentioned to her that a friend of mine had signed a contract for her first novel last year.
"So does she live in a mansion now?"
I'm pretty sure my mouth fell open. Fortunately, we were on the phone so she couldn't see my expression.
"Um, no. She lives about a block away from me."
I bit my tongue to keep from saying more. I know how much my friend's advance was and I can guarantee it wouldn't cover the property tax, let alone buy a whole new house! And I know other writers who have published multiple books and still live pretty much the same lifestyle that they had before.
So where does this misconception come from? Very few people get the big advances. Fewer still reach the level of J.K. Rowling (who is reportedly worth more than the queen of England).
Luckily, I'm not in it for the money. I mean, sure, I'd LOVE to make a ton of money from my books. But I write because I love to write. And I want to someday hold a book in my hands that has my name on it. And hide behind the stacks and watch someone actually pay to own one of my books.
Mansions are for famous athletes, actors and reality stars. I don't want to have to clean that much. I'd rather move into Barnes & Noble. Right under the shelf that has my books :)
Posted by Sherrie Petersen