I'm curious to know how many people here are professional writers. I've set up the poll so that votes are private in case anyone prefers to have their status remain anonymous. If you do want to identify yourself, just leave a reply. I'm an amateur writer; I've a couple of works published in some unknown journals, but I didn't get paid for them. The closest I got to getting paid was when a Japanese newspaper agreed to pay me $400 dollars for 4 columns, but then canceled the deal at the last minute. I had written them one article that they never published and they paid me $100 for it, so I guess I can say, someone has paid me to not publish my work. That always gets a couple of laughs among friends.