The Ferrett pretty well mirrors my own course in why I write short stories. There was a post (somewhere, sorry, lost the link) that explained that there was the possibility of about 500 or so short story slots in a year. However, there were over 5000 SF/F books published last year. Your chances of being published as a novelist is much greater than as a short story writer. (numbers from memory, which, with the drugs, has been very fallible lately).
Tobias talks about "butt in chair" time. While I quibble a little on this, nothing beats having ones butt in chair at similar times every damn day. I've done both (butt in chair versus I'm inspired to write). Having several jobs I know that having a set schedule isn't going to work (unless it's 10pm - 1am - at which point I'm usually trying to sleep). And this past month's heath issues have kept me away from producing words on a regular basis. However, if you can manage it with your time, "butt in chair" does work, and it works well. For this year I've tried to schedule all my government meetings at the beginning of the month so I can have the second half to put my butt in the chair.
I'm really blessed with smart friends of all political stripes. In fact, just gave a bone to my direct boss, who when he commented, "You pinched that nerve yourself, now you've got to live with the consequences" (on my commenting that I love the extra pain sensations that come in aftershocks from an unexpected sneeze) and I replied back, "But I'm a liberal, I don't believe I should live with the consequences of my actions." Gotta have a sense of humor about your own self and those around you. I don't always agree with everybody about everything (even people nominally on "my side" of an issue), and that doesn't make those people wrong. Much of it has to do with perspective and their own histories. And I'm also blessed that many of those friends write their own blog posts on topics I really wanted to say something about.
So here's Jim Wright on the myth of common sense. What he said. And as I posted in the comments over there, "common sense" is the "family values" of the twenty-teens.
Jay Lake points to a letter by Roger Ebert addressed to Rush Limbaugh. What he said. (what follows is interior fantasy) It's possibly the drugs breaking down my barriers of humanity and keying into the "angry young man" I used to be, but lately I've been thinking to myself, "So they want to position themselves as 'fighting a war' for values? Well, I know how to do that. I was trained in cointel. And I know which heads need venting to let sunshine in" (because, of course, I'm correct and all these other people are on the wrong side of history /irony). I'm sure it's the drugs. And fortunately, I don't own firearms. (yet).
And speaking of Jay, he pens a great fantasy on the larval stages of the common American speculative fiction writer. If you're not chuckling by the end of it, you haven't been doing this long enough (and I take the rip on Romance and Horror writers as good natured joshing). For me, I skipped the "Conspiracy Theory of Publishing" by 1) being yelled at to join the Haskell/Kletcha Klutch, and 2) thinking, "fuck it, I can do that." And right now I exist in that limbo between the "My friends are selling" and "Opps, I sold something." But without the homicidal part of the former. No. Really. I like you all. Stop staring at me and put down the phone. I said I don't own any firearms.