Welcome Inside the Box

Reports are rife about the waning interest in literary fiction, its last generation of snoozing readers cruising over the horizon, their novels left opened, face-down on their laps. There’s no disputing the evidence, which leaves writers like myself two choices: accept the dreary plot-line, or introduce a shift.

I’m opting for the latter. It’s time for me to recalibrate both the scope and intent of what it means to be an author, and more precisely, an author whose chosen mode is LitFic. I have to renew and expand my creative cycle. Continue reading “Welcome Inside the Box”

Literary Fiction: Why does it matter?

Literary Fiction: Post 2 of 3

I recently came across a Facebook post in one of the writers’ groups I have joined in which a fellow member lamented the frustrations of a ‘wannabe’ writer.

I responded, “Writing is not about writing. That’s the paradox of our vocation – a quirk of soul that keeps writers at it for decades, whole lifetimes, sometimes without ever being published or making money at it.

“There’s no such thing as a ‘wannabe writer’, only a ‘hafftabe’. Yes, the craft is important; true, we must pay attention to promoting and selling books if we want society to provide an income that allows us to write more; of course we want our stories to resonate beyond the closet shelf, into the greater consciousness, to be reimagined in the minds of readers. Continue reading “Literary Fiction: Why does it matter?”

Literary fiction: are all the canaries dead?

Literary Fiction: Post 1 of 3

Two recent reports, one in Canada and the other England, have brought to the fore how writers, particularly of literary fiction, are struggling.

The Writers’ Union of Canada released Devaluing Creators, Endangering Creativety (See full report) in 2015. One of its key findings was that writers incomes in this country have declined 27 per cent since 1998, and that incomes from writing for 80 per cent of writers are below the poverty line. Says the report:

These results represent a cultural emergency for Canadians. If we want a strong and diverse publishing and cultural industry, it is essential that creators are reasonably and fairly compensated… Devaluing Creators, Endangering Creativity, The Writers Union of Canada, 2015

Similarly, Literature in the 21st Century: Understanding Models of Support for Literary Fiction, (See full reportpublished by the Arts Council England, found that sales of literary fiction in England are below what they were in the 1990s, and fewer than 1,000 writers sell enough books to make a career of writing.

Continue reading “Literary fiction: are all the canaries dead?”