Pliny the Younger was a famous Roman lawyer and statesman. In the Letters of Pliny, he mentions the importance of being prolific:

Good compositions, as in everything else that is valuable, the more there is of them, the better. You may observe in statues, basso-relievos, pictures, and the human form, and even in animals and trees, that nothing is more graceful than magnitude, if accompanied with proportion.”

Very true. The great artist is prolific. His creations are numerous and expansive. If he’s a musician, he has 50 albums. If he’s a writer, he has 50 books. And so on and so forth…

Agatha Christie, surrounded by some of her 80-plus crime novels.
Agatha Christie is a good example of a prolific writer. She wrote 66 detective novels in her lifetime.

There’s no heroism in “storing it away for a rainy day,” or “waiting for the moment to be right.” Greatness is calling…the bus is leaving. Your goal is to create content. Your daily calling…to provide something of value to the public.

Remember that others will be scared of your prolific desires. What are you trying to prove? What’s the point of your hustle?

Ignore the miniature man. His future wife (if he gets married) will despise his mediocrity. You refuse to cower at the Altar of his Insecurity. He’s a meaningless clerk, working at the Hall of Insignificance. Listen to Pliny instead, for he’s pointing in the right direction:

“…in books a large volume carries a certain beauty and authority in its very size.”

Very true. Usually, the large book is great simply because of its size. Remember: most people only write large novels if they have something to say. True, there’s an occasional traitor in the bunch: the half-man, with his addiction to ambiguity. Usually, the wretch is exposed as an enemy to the GREAT MAN, or a traitor to the nation state (see Noam Chomsky).

The GREAT MAN is a creator of content. He produces on a regular basis, until a mountain of work is marking his noble name.

See Related Article: You Either Have Ambition or You Don’t

9 thoughts on “Pliny the Younger On the Value of Being Prolific

  1. Your featured image looks more like Pliny The Elder, the Younger’s uncle. Not trying to be a smart arse but I saw loads of Elder images recently at Herculaneum listening to a description of his affair with Rectina and subsequent death at the Vesuvius eruption!?

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