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Coleridge was a drug addict. Poe was an alcoholic. Marlowe was killed by a man whom he was treacherously trying to stab. Pope took money to keep a woman’s name out of a satire, then wrote a piece so that she could still be recognized, anyhow. Chatterton killed himself. Byron was accused of incest. Do you still want to a writer -and if so, why?
—Bennett Cerf, Shake Well Before Using
I’m deeply grateful that Matthew Butterick, the subject of one of my posts on Boing Boing, not only noticed my affectionate critique but also took the time to clarify some points in an email to me (reprinted with his permission):
Please, Mr. Butterick: my friends call me “Dear Sir or Madam.”
He went on:
I already generate plenty of revenue from the project (via font sales).
People buy fonts? For money?!
Thus the question is not “how do I make money?” but rather “can I do anything with the rest of the traffic?” Or is it just effluent?
The reason this question matters is because there’s no shortage of pundits and consultants who counsel authors to generate attention/traffic by any means necessary: with an email list, blog, Twitter presence, etc. Talk about old wine in new bottles.
Old wine in new bottles, yes, except wine typically gets better with age. Point: Butterick.