Hugh Howey, Bestselling Author of Wool and Mega-Creative — How to Sell Millions with Self-Publishing, How to Find Your Big Break, Making Hit TV Shows (Silo), How AI Will Upend Your Life, Nonconformist Creative Process, Advice for Writers, and More (#726)

[ad_1]

Illustration via 99designs

“You have to have loftier goals than your expected outcome.”

— Hugh Howey

Hugh Howey (@hughhowey) is the New York Times bestselling author of Wool, Beacon 23, Sand, Machine Learning, Half Way Home, and more than a dozen other novels. His Silo trilogy was recently adapted by Apple TV, becoming their #1 drama of all time. A series based on his novel Beacon 23, starring Lena Headey, also released last year with season two due in March. Hugh’s works have been translated into more than 40 languages and have sold millions of copies around the world. He lives in New York City with his wife Shay.

Please enjoy!

Listen to the episode on Apple PodcastsSpotifyOvercastPodcast AddictPocket CastsCastboxGoogle PodcastsAmazon Musicor on your favorite podcast platform. Watch the interview on YouTube here.

Brought to you by Wealthfront high-yield savings account, Momentous high-quality supplements, and Helix Sleep premium mattresses.

#726: Hugh Howey, Bestselling Author of Wool and Mega-Creative — How to Sell Millions with Self-Publishing, How to Find Your Big Break, Making Hit TV Shows (Silo), How AI Will Upend Your Life, Nonconformist Creative Process, Advice for Writers, and More


This episode is brought to you by Wealthfront! Wealthfront is an app that helps you save and invest your money. Right now, you can earn 5% APY—that’s the Annual Percentage Yield—with the Wealthfront Cash Account. That’s more than ten times more interest than if you left your money in a savings account at the average bank, according to FDIC.gov. 

It takes just a few minutes to sign up, and then you’ll immediately start earning 5% interest on your savings. And when you open an account today, you’ll get an extra fifty-dollar bonus with a deposit of five hundred dollars or more. Visit Wealthfront.com/Tim to get started.


This episode is also brought to you by Momentous high-quality supplements! Momentous offers high-quality supplements and products across a broad spectrum of categories, and I’ve been testing their products for months now. I’ve been using their magnesium threonateapigenin, and L-theanine daily, all of which have helped me improve the onset, quality, and duration of my sleep. I’ve also been using Momentous creatine, and while it certainly helps physical performance, including poundage or wattage in sports, I use it primarily for mental performance (short-term memory, etc.).

Their products are third-party tested (Informed-Sport and/or NSF certified), so you can trust that what is on the label is in the bottle and nothing else. If you want to try Momentous for yourself, you can use code Tim for 20% off your one-time purchase at LiveMomentous.com/TimAnd not to worry, my non-US friends, Momentous ships internationally and has you covered. 


This episode is brought to you by Helix SleepHelix was selected as the best overall mattress of 2022 by GQ magazine, Wired, and Apartment Therapy. With Helix, there’s a specific mattress to meet each and every body’s unique comfort needs. Just take their quiz—only two minutes to complete—that matches your body type and sleep preferences to the perfect mattress for you. They have a 10-year warranty, and you get to try it out for a hundred nights, risk-free. They’ll even pick it up from you if you don’t love it. And now, Helix is offering 20% off all mattress orders plus two free pillows at HelixSleep.com/Tim.


What was your favorite quote or lesson from this episode? Please let me know in the comments.

Want to hear another episode with someone who builds fictional worlds for a living? Listen to my most recent conversation with The School for Good & Evil author Soman Chainani in which we discussed giving stories away, the art of Christopher Marley, potentially gay bulls, career lessons from Taylor Swift, cross-collar dating, dodgy allergies, the life-changing power of ketamine, hookups, and much more.

#720: Life Lessons from Taylor Swift, Conquering Anxiety, Coaching Teens, Career Reinvention, Supposedly Gay Bulls, Your Shadow Side, and More — Soman Chainani

SELECTED LINKS FROM THE EPISODE

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

SHOW NOTES

  • [06:48] Breaking the formula with a literary sleight of hand.
  • [11:00] A commitment to 10 years of obscurity.
  • [15:02] Buying back rights and self-publishing.
  • [22:04] Why authors should strive for a reader-first vs. publisher-first mindset.
  • [24:22] Hitting the NYT Best Sellers List with a self-pub book.
  • [27:44] Pricing logic.
  • [31:00] The undersold value of worldwide rights.
  • [33:57] How authors can find deal leverage early on.
  • [37:07] Establishing a daily writing habit.
  • [41:34] Fiction that inspires better writing.
  • [45:27] Collaboration vs. writing solo.
  • [46:59] Ways the publishing industry protects the status quo.
  • [49:55] Why Hugh makes publishing deals at all.
  • [50:45] Self-promotion as therapy.
  • [53:05] Keys to fruitful collaboration.
  • [55:47] Common mistakes creatives make.
  • [1:01:05] AI’s present-and-future impact on publishing.
  • [01:06:08] AI-generated occupational and existential crises.
  • [01:10:13] Mid-term optimist, long-term pessimist
  • [01:14:59] Procreation in uncertain times.
  • [01:19:10] The future of religion.
  • [01:26:23] Free will and objective moral truth.
  • [01:31:04] Parting thoughts.

MORE HUGH HOWEY QUOTES FROM THE INTERVIEW

“It might not be your best time as a professional or a human, but your best time as a writer is when you’re doing it for yourself and no one’s looking over your shoulder while you’re doing it.”
— Hugh Howey

“You have to write a book that you think one other human will find this the best book they’ve ever read.”
— Hugh Howey

“You don’t want a bad review, someone to pay $2.99 for something they read in an hour. No amount of money is worth the onslaught of one-star reviews from angry readers.”
— Hugh Howey

“Publishers used to think a book kind of burned out its welcome really quickly, and now they’re realizing books have really long tails — successful books — and if you can get an engaged readership on board, it’s worth so much money to have that engaged fandom.”
— Hugh Howey

“You have to have loftier goals than your expected outcome.”
— Hugh Howey

“A common mistake I see people make is thinking that readers won’t follow you across genres. So you see people spread out their name amongst different pen names. I’m going to write under this for sci-fi and under this for romance, and this is my nonfiction stuff. The brand is you. And if people enjoy your prose, they’ll follow you to other genres. So really consolidate your identity. Unless you have a reason to not write under your real name, embrace your writing under your real name and make sure that you are the brand. The more readers can feel a connection with the person behind the work, the better off your career will be.”
— Hugh Howey

“Trusting expertise can get you in trouble.”
— Hugh Howey

“Everything written more than a hundred years ago is all free to read and you can download them all. That has not stopped people from having amazing careers. So the idea that there’ll be too much to read and so no one will make a living, that’s always been true. I’m not sure what AI would change about that.”
— Hugh Howey

“I think there’s an existential crisis that we’re going to face when we realize what you and I do is computational. Our brains are large language models. We’re not that special. We can replicate the human soul in a lot of ways. I think people are going to have a hard time with that.”
— Hugh Howey

“If you try to decide on whether or not to have kids based on what kind of life you think they’re going to have, no one would have kids, because nothing’s a guarantee. Life is going to be weird.”
— Hugh Howey

PEOPLE MENTIONED

The Tim Ferriss Show is one of the most popular podcasts in the world with more than 900 million downloads. It has been selected for “Best of Apple Podcasts” three times, it is often the #1 interview podcast across all of Apple Podcasts, and it’s been ranked #1 out of 400,000+ podcasts on many occasions. To listen to any of the past episodes for free, check out this page.



[ad_2]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *