Ian Fleming, author of the James Bond series of spy novels, sold 40 million copies of his books before he died in 1964. He wrote a book a year for the last 12 years of his life, including Goldfinger and the children’s book, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. But it was after he died that the Bond franchise really took off, and it continues to turn out new books, movies and profits today, 45 years later. Not too shabby.
Fleming wrote 2,000 words every day; three hours of work in the morning, and two in the afternoon. Somehow he kept up this strict regimen despite the fondness he shared with Mr Bond for drink, cigarettes and women.
In my last post I wrote about John Stienbeck’s 2,000 words a day rule. Both he and Fleming had doubts about their talent, but they persisted nonetheless and though their styles differed dramatically, both achieved great success with writing, and made money at the game. This could not have happened without getting their 2,000 words on the page, day after day.
Fingers need to pound the keyboard daily before they turn to gold.