A literary-minded witch gives you a choice: with a flick of the wand, you can become either an obscure novelist whose work will be admired and studied by a select few for decades, or a popular paperback author whose books give pleasure to millions. Which do you choose?
So I know what 99% of the writers responding to this will probably say (it’s the first one), but for me, it’s a much harder choice. As a younger human being, I guess I haven’t started being too concerned with the legacy I’ll leave after I’m gone since I’m not planning on being gone for a good long while. What matters to me is the here and the now, and I suspect it’ll be that way for a long time too.
I’ll answer this in a more straightforward way by saying I would definitely choose to be a popular paperback author. While I may not be writing “serious” work that will be picked apart by millions of high schoolers in the distant future, I will have the pleasure of knowing for certain that my work actually meant something. I write to entertain; I always have and I probably always will.
Also, other than my shallow and overpowering desire for fame, I have a more practical reason for wanting to please the crowd instead of a scholarly few. Call me old fashioned, but I really look forward to being a mother and raising my own children someday, and while I’ve always vowed I would never spoil my future kids, I don’t want to raise them in squalor either. Screw my future respect if it comes at the cost of preventing my future offspring from having a better life (I also very much like the idea of being the primary breadwinner in the family).
I also really like the idea of raising my future kids in NYC. In a loft. Like the one in Castle. Oh god, I’m probably going to spoil my kids rotten.