Write My Passion or Write What Sells?

Cynthia Ruchti

Blogger: Cynthia Ruchti

Should I write what sells or should I–can I, please–write my passion?


It’s a question many writers ask. They may have been told that their creative passion–what they’re most excited about writing–is something readers aren’t excited to read. Or publishers aren’t interested in contracting.writing passion


Writers are told their seventeen-book series is unsellable, despite the success of the Left Behind series.

They’re cautioned that their favorite genre is waning, gasping, spiraling down.

They’re warned that their passion–short novels–can’t be meaty or that epic novels have no space on bookstore shelves.

They’re told characters like the one they’ve created are unlovable, that the plot they love is overdone, that no author gets away with setting a book in that location or can write about that topic without losing their career, friends, mind, or passport.passion passport


The eighty-year-old author is told he’ll never sell his Marriage Magic for Millenials…because of the word magic. The twenty-year-old prodigy is told she should focus on writing speculative fiction, not parsing the works of medieval mystics.



The passionate poet is told outlets for published poetry are scarcer than rhyming words for orangepoetry passion


Writers struggle to know the difference between caving and compromise. Can compromise serve a writer’s goals, as it serves the health of a marriage?

What’s a writer to do?

Write your passion.

Study the market.

See where they intersect.

passion intersection

The intersection of what you love to write and what readers love to read is your sweet spot.


Studying the market, listening to the wise counsel of trusted industry experts (your agent, for instance), and tuning in to the frequency through which God speaks will help you discover that intersection, a writer’s True North.

What writing disciplines have helped you discover the intersection of what you long to write and what’s selling? Have you considered how you can compromise without caving on your personal creativity?