There it is, that word again. 'COMMERCIAL!' Now is there anyone out there who could define this for me so that writers, film makers etc can ensure that they only produce 'commercial' work? The point is no one does know what might be commercial. For example, and I apologise that this is an obvious one but everyone will be able to empathise with it, J K Rowling and Harry Potter, back in the 1990s magic, boarding schools and wizards were not commercial. Anything but. Without the likes of Christopher Little and Barry Cunningham (then of Bloomsbury and now of Chicken House fame) following their gut instincts that told them there was 'something' about that first story we would be without one of the most successful series written for children in the past few decades.
My concern is that if all these people keep talking about how everything has got to be 'commercially successful' it will become a self fulfilling prophecy where publishers, film markers, and, in fact, anyone in the arts stops taking risks. Stops listening to that gut feeling. Don't get me wrong I fully understand that not every film can be made or every book can be published and I am also aware that these are businesses so have to make money but I am begging agents, publishers, film makers and, even buyers, to continue to be brave and trust their instincts whilst not being blinded by that word 'commercial.' And, because I am writer, I would ask writers to continue to believe in what you are producing otherwise we risk having a bookshelf full of generic books.
I will now step off my soap box and ask you to listen to this, it is 'Somebody that I used to know' by Goyte