Another element to being an successful author is to diversify. Write and publish everything out there. And that includes: fiction, non-fiction, articles, short stories, humor, children's books, technical writing, fillers, and etc. We all want to showcase our writing talents, therefore we must produce good quality material from every genre. Let's not limit our writing. Expand.

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Umm, I'm afraid few of us are quite that multi-talented -- or able to produce enough enthusiasm for all of those fields.
The secret to being a successful author is to be proficient in your own field - ie, don't diversify, specialise. I'd be pretty gutted to buy a John Grisham book, and when I get it home find out that it is a woodworking manual.
I'd be okay with that if it were John Steinbeck.
Lathes of wrath? Of vice and men?
Woodworking was one of his hobbies.

Lathes of Wrath sounds like a good action packed blockbuster.
But Grisham has written a couple of different genre books. I loved Painted House...
But I know what you mean about specialising - Jack of all trades as my Ma would say.
HB x
Hilarious - and it mirrors my life to a tee -- Hey, what a minute ;-)
My compliments. That's pretty much it. Except for the ultimate success. Though I grant you, we all have the option of writing a fictionalized memoir of our years as a serial killer, or pedophile, or nymphomaniac, or transgendered person, or victim of sexual abuse by our father or mother.
This is very good, Jon, but you left out 1a: go to school, study creative writing. Spend the next ten-twenty years trying to forget everything that bitter, negative, failed writer taught you.
yeah, something about poetry. Although I never took a poetry course (there are just too few words to hide behind in a poem) the most celebrated profs we had were poets. Oh, and seeing as how I'm Canadian, some short story writers. I just found out that's a specialty of ours andthat the linked story collection was something of a Canadian invention.
You mean be a renaissance person? Hmmm? Interesting. ... I think you'd be better off sitting down in front of a blank computer screen for fifteen minutes a day than try an unmask the secrets of the universe like Leonardo da Vinci. I guess there might something to the shotgun approach if a writer doesn't know what they want to write, which genre, lit, or whatever. So they throw the spaghetti against the wall and sees what sticks. But after that spreading themselves thin over the bread of their own talent sounds counter productive. Opportunities to do more might arise after considerable focus on particular area. Success can breed more success, more opportunity. Remember-- wax on, wax off.

Charles
Ha, ha, ha! You forgot the smoking too much and caffiene overdrive. I noticed in High School that most of our great writers didn't become classic writers or timelessly wealthy until after they were in the grave. This thought sure put a damper on the thoughts of becoming a writer. Then I noticed via myself, that writer's, talented or not, just have this urge to write everything they feel, observe, or have an opinion on, then their papers and journals get stuck in all of these obscure areas around the house and occassionally all mixed up, most just can't seem to help themselves,

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