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Methuselah
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What authors would have been even better but succumbed to financial considerations?
It's kind of conventional wisdom that Fitzgerald altered his stories to get them into the big magazines of the time. And then of course the tried his hand in Hollywood.

And Dickens had to structure his novel for serial publications in newspapers/magazines, which was the in thing back then.

Sometimes I think the later work and selection of what to work on from GRRM may be rooted in his recollection of his younger days and kind of struggling to make ends meet as a writer. (I could be off on that but that's how it strikes me sometimes).

I've never read much of Stephen King beyond The Stand but I think he churns out the books at a pretty good rate. Not sure how it's affected his stuff though.

Of course, I guess the opposite also applies. Some writers like John Kennedy Toole would have likely benefited from putting out more stuff, even if a lot of it was lesser quality. But I think his problems dealt more with mental illness.



Loubacca
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re: What authors would have been even better but succumbed to financial considerations?
That is an interesting question. I know that Hemingway wrestled with meeting deadlines and writer's block often in his life, but I'm not sure it was caused by financial pressure. Of course, he wrestled with many demons including mental illness.


MSMHater
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re: What authors would have been even better but succumbed to financial considerations?
quote:

Sometimes I think the later work and selection of what to work on from GRRM may be rooted in his recollection of his younger days and kind of struggling to make ends meet as a writer.


I think he will be a classic example of succombing to financial considerations if/when ASOIAF reaches its conclusions. In fact, I would bet it's already begun. There are just too many cooks in the kitchen at this point. And most of them with a profit motive.


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Methuselah
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re: What authors would have been even better but succumbed to financial considerations?
quote:

That is an interesting question. I know that Hemingway wrestled with meeting deadlines and writer's block often in his life, but I'm not sure it was caused by financial pressure. Of course, he wrestled with many demons including mental illness.


Hmm. Great take. It was Hemingway that actually gave Fitzgerald a lot of hell about writing too commercially. But of course, Hemingway was never above projecting some of his own problems onto others - especially other writers.

He had a lot to say about Fitzgerald (and many others) in A Movable Feast which somehow manages to be both incredibly excellent writing and petty as hell at the same time.


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Freauxzen
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re: What authors would have been even better but succumbed to financial considerations?
quote:

I've never read much of Stephen King beyond The Stand but I think he churns out the books at a pretty good rate. Not sure how it's affected his stuff though.


I think was too popular too quickly for money to really matter for him. He's been writing whatever he wanted for a long long time.

Poe is the first that comes to mind for me. His legacy is probably cemented, but I wish he had lasted longer and put out more long form pieces....and fleshed out Dupin over a long career.

He also ticked a lot of people off, so there's that.
This post was edited on 11/28 at 11:39 pm


Methuselah
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re: What authors would have been even better but succumbed to financial considerations?
Yeah, Poe definitely had to churn out a ton of unimportant stuff to make a living and I think he spent most of his time working as an editor (which basically meant doing everything) at small magazines/papers. If he had been able to write more at leisure there is no telling how much good stuff he could have put out.

And yeah, he was a pretty big a-hole too and pissed a lot of people off. He had a thing against Longfellow for some reason. Also, one of the people he pissed off - Griswold, was really pissed and did a lot of damage to Poe's reputation and Poe died.

Someone on either this board or the M/TV board linked a documentary of him on PBS recently and it was a great watch.


Freauxzen
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re: What authors would have been even better but succumbed to financial considerations?
quote:

Griswold, was really pissed and did a lot of damage to Poe's reputation and Poe died.


Nearly ruined his legacy.

And academically Poe still gets very little credit. He nurtured the short story form more than most authors, created the detective fiction, elevated gothic writing....and he wrote the least known most important American novel in Arthur Gordon Pym.

I'm probably more of a Poe fanatic than most, but my time in Grad School (English/Literature) really opened my eyes to how stymied academics can be even about known important entities like Poe.

quote:

Someone on either this board or the M/TV board linked a documentary of him on PBS recently and it was a great watch.



Watched it. It was fantastic.
This post was edited on 11/29 at 7:41 pm


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McLemore
Member since Dec 2003
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re: What authors would have been even better but succumbed to financial considerations?
quote:

Some writers like John Kennedy Toole would have likely benefited from putting out more stuff, even if a lot of it was lesser quality. 


He would've also benefited from not sucking tailpipe exhaust. Sort of hard to write under those conditions.

But yeah seems he could've churned out something commercial that was still literary. Or maybe added a plot to Dunces (I've read it 4 times and is a top-5er so not criticizing it).


Methuselah
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re: What authors would have been even better but succumbed to financial considerations?
quote:

But yeah seems he could've churned out something commercial that was still literary. Or maybe added a plot to Dunces (I've read it 4 times and is a top-5er so not criticizing it).



I read somewhere that the top guy at one of the big publishers told him when he first submitted it that he was very impressed with it but that it wasn't quite publication ready, and Toole spent a ton of time trying to revise it but the guy never gave the ok. And of course it wasn't until after Toole died and his mom went full Rambo and finally got Robert Penn Warrent to read it, and Warren loved it and talked to LSU press about publishing it, that it finally got accepted.


McLemore
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re: What authors would have been even better but succumbed to financial considerations?
Yep. Simon & Schuster said it was too random (my paraphrase).

I think it was genius. But the first time I read it, I kept waiting for the plot that never developed.


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Arksulli
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re: What authors would have been even better but succumbed to financial considerations?
I will throw out an author that I don't read, though my mother snaps up her books left and right. Nora Roberts.

The woman has hammered out more then 200... yes, 200 novels, in just 37 years of writing. Something like 60 of those are Sci-Fi/romance novels published under an alias.

She churns out a novel every two months. 8 hours every day no matter what. You have to wonder if she wasn't making bank doing what she is doing... what would she write if she had the time to sit down and really polish something?



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LCA131
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re: What authors would have been even better but succumbed to financial considerations?
quote:

finally got Robert Penn Warrent to read it,


???


Rockbrc
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re: What authors would have been even better but succumbed to financial considerations?
Vonnegut
GRRM


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Methuselah
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re: What authors would have been even better but succumbed to financial considerations?
quote:

quote:finally got Robert Penn Warren to read it, ???


Oops. Meant Walker Percy.

Wikipedia on Confederacy of Dunces


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