Questions are easy to come by. The answers can be much more elusive. Am I talented? Is my writing marketable? Why doesn’t my book sell? As fellow blogger and author, Chris Galford asked in a recent post, “Are we bad writers or merely struggling writers?” The answer is a matter of perspective. Someone with less talent will hold you in higher esteem. Others may see your work as promising and hopefully offer advice to help strengthen what you have. There will always be someone who will have plenty of destructive criticism. That all assumes that anyone has read what you have written.
There are mediocre writers who have been highly successful and certainly the inverse must be true. So, I wouldn’t equate success with talent. I keep coming back to Chris’ “bad versus struggling” question. Writing is a struggle. It takes discipline. It takes desire. It takes talent. It takes time. For that reason I would place every writer in the “struggling” category. The “good” or “bad” part of the equation is still another question. I don’t know how we nail down that answer, but I do know that you can’t be a good writer if you don’t write. Keep up the struggle. Keep the pen moving. As Scully and Mulder knew, “The truth is out there.”