Friday, May 29, 2015

An industry of extremes

The Writers’ Union of Canada (TWUC) has released a report on writer income, and it's not good. On average, income has fallen 27% since 1998 (accounting for inflation). And writers say they are working harder to even make that.

"The Writers’ Union believes these results represent a cultural emergency for Canada. For 81% of respondents, income from writing would not allow them to live above the poverty line, and the average writer’s income ($12,879) is a full $36,000 below the national average. This despite the fact that writers have invested in post-graduate education in large numbers."

You can read the whole report here.

They paint a dire picture. Of course they would, given their role, but that doesn't mean they're wrong.

Nevertheless, 'cultural emergency' is obvious hyperbole.

The report also contains quotes like: “Making a living as a writer has become tenuous and precarious."

Now, let's be fair: when has that not been true?

Well. Advocates must advocate.

On the other hand, there's John Scalzi's recent book deal: Tor Books will pay him $3.4 million for 13 novels over 10 years.

Yowza! That's awesome. Awesome enough to have made mainstream news. Which is great for a sci-fi author. How often does that happen?

Giants and gnats, that's what we've got. Always been that way, always will be.

Nature of the arts.

In which case, am I really saying anything here? Things are the same, only more so?

A blogger's gotta blog.

Actor salaries have skyrocketed since Jack Nicholson scored a cool $20 million for Batman. Now we're also seeing polarization in film budgets. You can get a $200 million film made, or a $10 million dollar film, but not a mid-range budget film. At least, they're not as easy to get green-lit as they used to be.

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