What “Writing Success” Looks Like to Me Now

For one thing, I haven’t been on an airplane in years.

Shannon Page
5 min readApr 3, 2022


Photo by Daria Kraplak on Unsplash

You might have heard about it: a well-regarded fantasy and science fiction writer just ran the biggest-earning Kickstarter campaign ever, hitting nearly $42 million — forty-two times his goal. Brandon Sanderson was already successful by any measure, with nice publishing deals for not only his own original best-selling works, but also to finish the long-running series of an author who died with the end of his saga unwritten.

I watched the Kickstarter in quiet amazement. It blew past its not-all-that-modest goal in the first few hours, and just kept growing from there. Within four days, it was at $20 million.

Clearly a lot of people want good genre writing!

As a genre writer myself, I found this all fascinating — and encouraging. In fact, in a lovely rising-tide-lifts-all-boats gesture, Sanderson soon turned to backing a whole bunch of other publishing fundraisers.

Did this make me want to run a Kickstarter myself?

Nope. So much nope.

Even if there were a sliver of a chance that I’d do the tiniest fraction as well as he did, I have finally come to understand that that’s not the kind of writing success I’m interested in.



Shannon Page

Writer, editor, thinker of things, living on Orcas Island, Washington state. https://www.shannonpage.net