Advice for Writers

John Scalzi has what looks to be good advice for writers.  Why?

Because it very often appears to me that regardless of how smart and
clever and interesting and fun my fellow writers are on every other
imaginable subject, when it comes to money "” and specifically their own money
"” writers have as much sense as chimps on crack. It's not just writers
"” all creative people seem to have the "incredibly stupid with money"
gene set for maximum expression "” but since most of creative
people I know are writers, they're the nexus of money stupidity I have
the most experience with. It makes me sad and also embarrasses the crap
out of me; people as smart as writers are ought to know better.

Beyond really liking Scalzi's work, he does an amazing amount of work promoting other writers.  Just skim his blog for the last several months.  A hell of a lot more of it is about promoting other authors than it is about promoting his own work.  Here is an example of his advice.

8. Unless you have a truly compelling reason to be there, get the hell out of New York/LA/San Francisco.

Because they're friggin' expensive, that's why. Let me explain: Just
for giggles, I went to and looked for apartments in
Manhattan that were renting for what I pay monthly on my mortgage for
my four bedroom, 2800 square foot house on a plot of land that is,
quite literally, the size of a New York City block ($1750, if you must
know, so I looked at the $1700 - $1800 range). I found two, and one was
a studio. From $0 to $1800, there are thirteen apartments available. On
the entire island of Manhattan. Where there are a million people. I love that, man.


  1. HTRN:

    As a lifelong NewYorker, who's looking to escape to the Poconos as soon as possible, I can tell you this - only the rich and/or crazy people actually live in Manhattan. The rest of us live in the outer boroughs, where it's cheaper(but still not cheap. For instance, a studio apt on the Southern End of Staten Island typically runs $700 a month plus utilities). That's still nuts though - I'm looking at a house in PA that a 20 year mortgage would have a monthly note less than full coverage would cost me for my Suburban.

  2. Tim Worstall:

    This writer lives in southern Portugal for exactly that reason. A small farm for half the cost of an apartment in southern England.