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Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Creativity VS Making Money

Some comments that may be of value about creativity versus making money. I've talked about this story somewhere before, but it reared its ugly head again. 

I posted this comment on Goodreads a couple days back, in response to a comment, in the thread for Stephen King's On Writing book: 

"A friend gave me this book following his Creative Writing class in college. His VERY anti-King professor told him that he could have assigned a dozen great books on how to write well, but he assigned On Writing because the students wanted to learn how to make money writing. The professor hates King's writing but knows the man makes a killing doing what he does best: telling good stories. Writing well and making money writing are not always hand in hand. Oh, and I loved the book. Other than the awesome personal-life accounts, King gives basically two orders: 1. Write every day. 2. Keep writing."

I received a response to the effect that the professor was a jealous idiot, and that Stephen King writes well, and could write better if he wanted to, but chooses to focus on the story instead. I consider this a moot point. So I responded in kind:

"Well, this professor isn't an idiot, but he does have it out for King. Just doesn't like him. Jealousy may be a factor, but most likely it's the haughtiness I've witnessed in some professors. One of my dear art professors, for instance, is an awesome artist, but he disdains Thomas Kinkade for shirking tradition and "lessening" the value of his work by selling prints AND by doing simple genre scenes.

It is all quite silly. Kinkade made a killing with his art prints and brand, and is one of the most well known artists of his generation, painting what everyone wanted to hang in their homes. Also, far be it from me to judge an author like King who brings home millions, writing (pretty vividly) what people want to read!

As a writer and artist, I have my own biases. But they don't cloud common sense. Creative people create. Financially successful creative people create what people want to buy."

I repeat: Financially successful creative people create what people want to buy.

End of story, right? Or just the beginning? :)



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