A group of published novelists were talking recently about the unrealistic expectations of aspiring writers, those who think they will pen their first book, sell it immediately, and make a ton of money. Count me in among those with said expecations way back in 1981. But that was before the Internet and the easy access to information and writers' organizations that exist today. That was certainly before the reality of my first advance ($1,000) which was paid in thirds (a third upon signing and upon revisions and upon publication).
Here is an amusing YouTube musical interpretation, apparently by someone whose first book will be released in the fall of 2009. Enjoy!