Do I have to go to college to be a writer?

By Holly Lisle

There are apparently 7000 different ways to ask this question, and since I have only answered a couple hundred of them in the past two weeks, I’m trying to get ahead of the curve here.

The answer is no. Not just no, but HELL, no!

No, you don’t have to go to college if you want to be a writer, and you could be a happier, more successful writer if you don’t. You certainly won’t start your writing career a “moderate” $25,000 to $50,000 dollars in debt.

You don’t have to have a master’s degree.

You don’t have to have a high-school diploma.

Having a high-school diploma, a bachelors degree, an MFA, a PhD in literature, or anything else will not improve the marketability of your work.

Publishers will not buy your novel because you went to Yale or Harvard or Podunk Community College.

They will buy your work because you have written a good story they think they can make a profit selling.

I’ve written a LOT about this.

Here’s what I have:

Do you need a college education to write?

And then everything else on the right sidebar of this page: Articles, FAQs, Quizzes, and Workshops About Writing and Being a Writer.


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