When will I be famous?

Before we begin, this picture (or one very similar) was a standard feature on every ship that I sailed on, back in the 1970s and 1980s. It was as much a part of my life at sea as any picture of home that I ever put on my cabin bulkhead.

Her Majesty was the Master of the Merchant Navy, it was customary to propose a loyal toast to her health every Christmas day, after lunch. A part of the ritual of my time spent on ships. I met her once, for no more than a moment, on the Jubilee Tour of 1977, when the Royal yacht, Britannia docked next to our ship in Napier, New Zealand. There has been no time in my life until now when she wasn’t there, it hardly seems possible that she has gone.

Now, back to business.

Welcome back to another blog hop, with #OpenBook. Here’s this week’s prompt.

Don’t forget to click the purple button to see what everyone else has to say on this week’s subject. It’s at the end of my post.

If your book took off tomorrow with enormous worldwide interest and sales, are you prepared for all that entails?

I won’t pretend that, while I’ve been promoting my work, fame and fortune haven’t been on my mind. However, they’re not the aim, to be pursued at all costs. I must admit that (in theory at least), the life of a rich and famous author sounds appealing but I suspect that the reality would be something quite different to how I imagine it.

For me, writing is a hobby, a way to pass my retirement and keep my mind sharp. I have no idea how or why I started writing and if it all ended tomorrow, while I might miss it, it wouldn’t be the end of the world.

At the moment, I don’t need income from it to live, I have enough for my needs, any money I make is a nice bonus. I’m reasonably content with the work I produce, I don’t think it’s ever going to be incredibly popular but that’s OK. It gives me pleasure to produce stories and there are a few people who seem to enjoy reading them.

I live quietly, just another anonymous face in the crowd. And that suits me fine. The thought of being unable to walk down the street unrecognised fills me with dread. I’m not sure if I could cope with the trappings of fame, after all, I chose a pen name when I started publishing.

The idea of attending any sort of event and rubbing shoulders with the great and the good has never been my scene.

I’d rather be at home, with my family, watching T.V.

As for money, in the past, there are times when I’ve been “rich”. I found then that having money can just bring you a different set of problems, compared to having none.

There are the knock-on effects that fame and fortune bring, the unintended consequences for family and friends. It may be reserved for the few right at the top but at one time, they were struggling artists too. It’s something that’s rarely discussed yet if you look at the lives of celebrities, or those who’ve won the lottery, you’ll often see the signs of negative attention, especially on social media.

I’ve been on the receiving end of that so I know how it feels.

Then, there may be the need for celebrities to spend a lot of that fortune on security or maintaining their privacy. I’m sure you could also expect the blossoming of requests for help from people who are suddenly your best friend.

It’s also true that in some instances, children have had their lives turned upside down because of the fame of other family members, causing them all sorts of problems.

Who wants to potentially live like that?

I guess that the ideal situation for me is just to carry on as I am, enjoying anonymity and modest success. A few people know what I do and support me but I (and those important to me) can live in peace.

Until next time.

Let me know what you think about this week’s subject.

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12 Responses

  1. Stevie Turner

    I agree, Richard. Anonymity and modest success seem the best options. I am happy with my day job and having enough money for my needs, but I don’t ever expect to make a living from writing.

    • Richard Dee

      For me, writing is a hobby, and like any hobby, it’s done for enjoyment, not reward.

  2. Steven Smith

    I get that. I just love being able to sit in a coffee shop, or chill at home with the TV or videogames, or building some Lego. That said, I am sure I could manage a fraction of what Mr King has!

    • Richard Dee

      I get the reward, it’s the sense of achievement when I see the cover on a sales page; or if the book gets a good review. Anything else is a bonus.

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