Kathryn Chetkovich, Granta, Envy.
Posted by celticman on Tue, 13 Dec 2022
Envy | Kathryn Chetkovich | Granta Magazine
I came to read this in a roundabout way. A recommendation from a writer I hadn’t read. She’s posted on Betsy Lerner’s blog. I hadn’t heard of her either. Betsy was Lucy Grealy’s literary agent. I greatly admired her autobiography. Betsy’s literary agent to Patti Smith, whose recent publication Book of Days, which I haven’t read, obviously went straight in at number one in The New York Times Bestseller list. Betsy has been on the Best Seller list too as an author. She asked a simple question, do you feel envious of other writers’ success.
My reply was I didn’t feel envious of her success, because she and they were on a different stratosphere to my writing. They are the four or five percent who make a good living from writing. Most of the rest of us are amateurs. I met online most of my fellow writers on Sunday night on a ABCtales Zoom meeting. Professionals can expect to make on average £7000 per annum or the price of a monthly rental for a one-bedroom in London. That figure too has been following year on year. We’re all amateurs now. None of us, I expect, make anywhere near that through our writing, although some may have made the odd ten or twenty quid. Would I be envious if one of the ABCtalers went onto the Betsy Lerner level of success?
Aye and no. Because it’s nothing to do with me.
It’s a Scottish thing that’s not Scottish. Proud that we knew them, as long as they didn’t get too big for their boots, or indeed had boots. I thought about examples from Siri Hustvedt or Julian Barnes, or Hemingway, or Dickens, or Shakespeare…
Boris Pastor, Necropolis, he lived in a place of death, but still envied the man that might have had a bit of potato skin in his soup. Amen to our dreams.
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Amen to our dreams, for sure.
Amen to our dreams, for sure. It's inspiring seeing someone you know break through and be published. Maybe that's the magic of this site. £7K p.a. though. Not a living is it? Interesting stuff, CM.
I find it interesting marinda
I find it interesting marinda.