I think many people have a manuscript in them, but only a small fraction of those have a book worth publishing. As far as I’m concerned, everyone should learn to write, even if that skill is only applied to their reading. I appreciate every machine in my house more once I’ve taken it apart and put it back together. Writing should be used the same way. But that doesn’t mean your writing needs to be published. The Guardian looks into things.
It’s hard to think of any other art form so consistently assumed to have absolutely no bar to entry.
You rarely see comedians or television presenters presuming to try their hand at being a concert pianist. And yet producing a novel is now such a well-established rung on the light entertainment career ladder that these books are in danger of becoming the rhododendrons of the publishing ecosystem: not necessarily unappealing, in their own gaudy way, but in danger of choking off every other variety.