For the record, I'm not a James Patterson fan. I have nothing against the guy; he's brillant at marketing himself and seems to know what he's doing. Some would even argue that he's single-handedly helped keep the publishing industry alive this long ... despite the fact that his work (often co-authored) floods the market and keeps other writers from possible success.
I just read a lengthy New York Times essay about the man and how he's changed publishing. I tweeted the link but want to include it here in case anybody wants to start a dialogue with their thoughts on the subject. This one paragraph really suck out to me as someone who would one day like to actually make a living off his writing:
“I have a saying. If you want to write for yourself, get a diary. If you want to write for a few friends, get a blog. But if you want to write for a lot of people, think about them a little bit. What do they like? What are their needs? A lot of people in this country go through their days numb. They need to be entertained. They need to feel something.”