Two posts ago ( how often can you say that ;-)) I was talking about Xmas movies.
Charlotte's web. To be exact.
actually never read the book or seen the movie and I was wondering why
this movie was such a success when it came out in 2006.
Or even as a book.
The story seemed nice but somehow completely outdated with what Kids want to read or watch nowadays.
Storyline: an intelligent spider named Charlotte is trying to prevent a pig named Wilbur from being slaughtered.
It doesn't seem like wild or overly original as a story. Right? Wrong?
In fact "if Anyone wrote something like this now, he or she would be told how cheesy or lovey dovey it is.
Well to answer my question, I went to check Wikipedia.
And the reason (I thought) was because it was written back in 1952! Timing might have been of the essence. WW2 was just over and the Cold War tension was was escalating rapidly. Maybe this lovely story provided a nice change for parents and kids as things were growing unsteadily!
American author E. B. White ( I thought the author would be a woman but
it's actually a man) born in 1899 only turned to writing for children
in the late 1930's.
By that time he was already in his
late thirties (obviously ;-) he wrote columns in a newspaper before but
nothing that set him apart. So by no means, do I understand how Charlotte's Web is now 78th on the all-time bestselling hardback book
list selling apparently more than 45 million copies and been translated into
So what happened?
Well I'll tell you what happened.
In 1925, he was in The New Yorker magazine, then joined the staff in 1927 and continued to contribute for around six decades!!
He frequently provided what the magazine calls "Newsbreaks", these being short, witty comments
on oddly-worded printed items from many sources.
He also served as a columnist
for Harper's Magazine from 1938 to 1943.
So there you have it.
It's not necessarily what you write or how well you write it, it's WHO you know and HOW you get a chance to advertise yourself.
If you write for one of the poshest magazine with a readership that is 53% of its circulation in the top ten U.S. metropolitan areas and the average household income of The New Yorker
readers is $109,877 ( in 2009, well at the time, it was probably much
lower but I'd say the readership was still high and middle-class) then I
think you will be just fine as a writer!!!
Then of course, there's talent.
It does say in Wikipedia that "the description of the experience of swinging on a rope swing at the
farm is an often cited example of rhythm in writing, as the pace of the
sentences reflects the motion of the swing."
But in most cases, I don't think it's everything.
now to you readers and writers, first of all what do you think of this
book? Do you think it would work nowadays? Do you think that success as a
writer depends on what you do for a living on the side? or do you
believe talent is the key?
I'd like to have your opinion.