📑 “My Own Little Fiefdom”: Why Some Famous Novelists Are All About Substack

Bookmarked “My Own Little Fiefdom”: Why Some Famous Novelists Are All About Substack by Adrienne Westenfeld (Esquire)

Although the literary program has room to expand, it won’t be a fit for every novelist with an established readership. “The model definitely favors writers who are extremely gregarious and prolific, and who have highly identifiable, bright, colorful writing styles,” McGurl says. “It’s harder to imagine a more tortured writer—the ones who come out with very little work, in small doses, because they’re suffering for every word they get down. It’s hard to imagine them in this medium, because the pace is ultimately journalistic. You’re almost like a columnist.” But for novelists with the right constitution, there’s a lot to love about the experiment.

Adrienne Westenfeld discusses the way in which some novelists, such as George Saunders, Salman Rushdie and Chuck Palahniuk, have turned to Substack as a means of serializing fiction, teaching the craft of writing and generally engaging with readers. Westenfeld explores the way in which the paywalls provide a means for writers to decide what moderation means to them. However, this hopefulness is in contrast to the fact that the platform has yet to sign-up a high-profile female novelist.

In some reminds me of Jack Antonoff’s point about concerts being something of a safe space:

“No one hates anyone enough to go out there and buy a ticket to heckle them at the show, therefore when I am on tour I feel like I am with my people” (3:00)

However, it does make me sad to think more and more of such conversations are moving away from the public park to closed gardens. With this said, I come back to Austin Kleon’s point about replying the letters and wonder if that is that his job is to produce art.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *