Musing content alert. I interact on some level every day with other authors on social media. Since highly commercially successful writers have no need to interact, the ones I am talking about are predominantly self-published or in the process of writing/have written and are striving to be traditionally published. Some have made a breakthrough to be either traditionally published or have adequate independent sales to be considered commercially successful. This can be where they may do multiple types of writing such as articles, etc., and/or a book. In this case, that means they make a profit on their writing, although it may not be adequate to be their only source of income. I’ve previously posted that while I continue to take steps to try and have a commercial breakthrough, I also understand that may never happen.
This leads me to the related point I’ve also previously discussed when it comes to how one measures success in one’s livelihood. I think many of us know of a modest restaurant with someone who has been working there for 20+ years as a server. It’s not an easy job by any means, yet it is honest work. (For those who have traveled to Europe where it is an actual profession, that’s a post for another time.) Being a server in this country is generally considered as a starter or supplemental job, especially in college towns, New York City, and Los Angeles. In other situations though, it’s does become a career whether originally intended or not. Moving then into the trades – the theme here if you haven’t picked up on it is non-college careers. (I’m skipping retail for this post). Most trades can be learned adequately to be employed at the entry level in one or two years. Instruction combined with apprenticeship is common and often the best path when it is available. Barring going to work for a bad company/bad boss, a business wants to retain good employees and there will be internal salary tiers as experience is gained. The reason you pay the hourly rate you do for electricians, etc., is precisely so those employees can be paid more while the necessary overhead costs and owner profit can be covered. Good employees may often also set up a sideline, freelance business to either supplement what they have or look to perhaps opening their own business some day. It’s true that blue collar work as an employee doesn’t usually result in six figure incomes. It is, however, a path that should be encouraged and supported if an individual shows inclination rather than being fixated on attending college.