Sunday, September 15, 2019

Luck, timing, and who you know?

Very early in my writing, someone told me that "success" depends on luck, timing, and who you know.

At first, I firmly believed that "luck" was the biggest factor. That writing a good book wasn't enough--you also needed something unusual to happen for people to notice. (Such things as quality being equal.)

As I became more experienced, I started to believe that "who you know" was maybe the most important part.

Now, after many books under my belt, I come to the conclusion that "timing" is the most important factor.

Of course, all three of these things are intrinsically linked.  The luck of timing, the timing of luck, the luck of knowing someone....

I think this is probably true of all the arts.

I know that timing-wise, my forward momentum has stalled several times because of gaps in publishing that were beyond control. On the other hand, just when it seemed that I was near the end of my thread, something would pop up to revive my little career.

I can dream about what might have happened if the momentum could have been maintained and the luck had happened too. It wasn't anyone's fault. I know that a couple of my publishers who reached for the mass market brass ring probably felt it was worth the gamble. Even my first publisher, who went MIA between my second and third books, I can't be too mad about because he was the one who gave me entry, and who gave "Led to the Slaughter" a good start.

So I've had a bit of luck, and a bit of good timing, and I've known a couple authors--but I probably need much more of all three. 

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