Let the games begin!
An author is someone who originates or creates. A writer is someone who is an author or writes stock options. The dictionary is a great place to reflect and gain knowledge.
There is a school of thought online that states: if you are not optioned by a press or publisher you are therefore not an author. As seen by the two definitions above, that is a fallacy. Writer and author are interchangeable.
For a long time, I used the term "writer" to identify myself because I had not published a book. When I had published my own writings, an article arose stating that self published writers should not classify themselves as authors. That in doing so self published authors were just giving themselves trophies for showing up.
Then I pondered on the dilemma a bit further. Was this a case of publisher snobbery? You can only win the title of author if you lick the boots of some garish halfwit with a license?
Publishing houses have been in control of the written word for a very long time. Writers have had to subject themselves to agents and supply chain demands and criticism for centuries. Now with print on demand technology and the internet, agents and publishing houses have some stiff competition called the free market.
The monopoly is finished. No more social engineering people to write certain stories or outcomes. People can write for the simple joy of writing.
But there are so many bad writers out there, how do we weed them out?
The market will weed out bad writers. For the rest, writers could take a leadership role in making sure good writers are lifted into the public eye more readily by buying and reviewing their books online, creating and publishing anthologies at their own standards, and assisting fellow writers in the writing process.
I have opened up Sonoran Dawn Studios to publish my own works as well as create and release short story and poetry anthologies in the near future.
Writers have an enormous opportunity to shape the future of writing, if they stop depicting writing as an authoritative caste system deployed to bully and control the act of writing to the point where writers and authors mean two distinct ideas, then writers can become their own gatekeepers as well as mentor younger or less seasoned writers. But writers will need to take a stand to guide the market.
There is room in the world for literary and pop culture writing.
Writers, authors must make sure that their field is free of hacks that seek to reign in writing back to the cloistered control system that has yielded profit before people.
Writing is a craft. It must be developed, exercised, and studied. Writing must not be limited by small minds.
So next time you think of an author... think potential.
Have a great and wonderful day!
Also published as Writer Versus Author on Authorsden.