Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Why I'm Glad I'm a Author and NOT a Singer!
By Angela Henry

Boy, the record biz is tough. Last week I was reading about how R & B singer Ciara's latest album was a flop and set to sell only about 70,000 units. A few months ago Destiny's Child alum Kelly Rowland got dropped from her record label despite her two solo albums selling a combined total of over 2 million records. I couldn't help but think that if these ladies were authors, they'd be bestsellers. Though I'm proof that poor sales can get you dropped by your publisher, 70,000 to 2 million copies sold of a book would make any author a hot commodity to a publishing company. Then there are the other things that make me happy that I'm not a singer.

1. Writers don't have to worry about being stick thin and gorgeous. We don't have to worry about not having the right "look". Unlike with this lady, no one is going to be shocked and surprised that a person who isn't beautiful has writing talent.

2. Writers can have a writing career no matter how old they are. I've heard of 90 year-old debut novelists but never a 90 year-old with a debut album out.

3. Writers can re-invent themselves by simply changing their names. If a singer's albums flop, they either disappear altogether or try acting. Successful comeback's, like Tina's Turner's, are possible but usually few and far between. Writers, however, can still write under a pen name and usually no one is the wiser. . .unless you get outed like this guy did.

Now, don't get me wrong. Being a writer has its own share of pitfalls and some of them mirror those of the record industry. Both publishers and record labels can be guilty of a lack of support for their own projects and dropping singers and authors with poor sales. Both industries are in big trouble and don't quite know how to handle digital content. On the plus side, Singers seem to have a bit more freedom to experiment with their music, while authors, unless they change their names, tend to get locked into writing the same kinds of books to please their fans. But from where I'm sitting, I still think I've got the better deal.



Rhonda McKnight said...

Nice, Angela. Makes me glad I'm a writer and 70,000 books would be a dream come true.

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