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Why writing is a buyers market, and why that sucks

September 19, 2013

What make’s writers tick?

Matthew Wright

It seems to me that the main hurdle writers face is that it’s a buyer’s market.

1197094932257185876johnny_automatic_books_svg_medThe chief characteristic of a buyer’s market is that producers are not valued by those who buy their products. But wait, I hear you say, what about J K Rowling? Or Stephenie Meyer? Dan Brown?

I’m not talking about occasional authors who become household names. I’m talking about the everyday author, journalist, writer  who sells to buyers (media and publishers) that are flooded with people who write.

It’s how the agency system got traction. The advent of self-publishing  (‘indie publishing’) hasn’t changed the calculation because the avenues are choked with output, much of it dross. Discovery is a real hurdle – and that has the same end result. It’s a buyers’ marker – the commodity is ‘being found’. And it’s hard; as a friend of mine observed recently, even ‘free’ doesn’t cut it. People won’t give…

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