Economics

The Baby-sitters Club, and how we figure out what people want to read

I interviewed a few people from Macmillan last week for a piece I’m writing on crowdsourcing. One of those people was Jean Feiwel, who lists on her bio that working with Ann M. Martin years ago while she was at Scholastic to create The Baby-sitters Club was “one of my proudest accomplishments.”
Since we were talking about whether publishers know what re… read more »

How do I start a business when I’ve got a bundle of kids around here?

In the post earlier this week on The Nesting Place, a few comments raised the question of how to start a business when you don’t have the cash for childcare. You hope the business will eventually bring in enough to pay for childcare, a great house, trips to Tahiti, retirement, innovative philanthropic work, etc., but it probably won’t right away. It is the… read more »

The Nesting Place: Analysis, critique, etc.

I recently read The Nesting Place, by Myquillyn Smith, and went through various frames of mind about it. The one sentence review: it’s got a lot of great decorating ideas in it, and some seriously gorgeous photos of what can be achieved on a slim budget. If you are not into a discussion on feminism, gender roles, economics, and the upsides/drawbacks of the &#… read more »

Doing what you love is not always a completely awful financial strategy

There’s been a lot written lately about the danger of doing what you love (“DWYL”). Miya Tokumitsu floated the anti-DWYL thesis in Slate in January, noting that DWYL’s “real achievement is making workers believe their labor serves the self and not the marketplace.” DailyWorth picked up on the piece in an essay called “Why Doing What You Love… read more »

The economics of writing — or how to write for a living and not starve

In the comments yesterday on the Why Am I Not in STEM? post, we got into the topic of writing as a career. It is not known as a particularly stable or high-income line of work.
However, it’s not inherently grim. People who call themselves writers do not, on average, do badly. According to the BLS, there are 41,990 Americans who call themselves “writers and au… read more »