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Fame: Persistence vs. Skill

Mind blowing stats. How long it took YouTube creators to get followers (averaged):

🤯 1M: 3,873 videos
🤑 100k - 1M: 1,171 videos
😁 10k - 100k: 418 videos
🙂 1k - 10k: 151 videos

Persistence, focus, and patience are key in anything!

— luba.eth (@LubaYudasina) November 27, 2020


If fame is a game of persistence, then churn out as much content as possible – you’ll eventually create something that goes viral.

Maximize shots-on-goal.


If fame is a game of skill, carefully curate your content.

Build it and they will come.

Persistence Creates Skill

[A] ceramics teacher announced on opening day that he was dividing the class into two groups. All those on the left side of the studio, he said, would be graded solely on the quantity of work they produced, all those on the right solely on its quality. His procedure was simple: on the final day of class he would bring in his bathroom scales and weigh the work of the “quantity” group: fifty pound of pots rated an “A”, forty pounds a “B”, and so on. Those being graded on “quality”, however, needed to produce only one pot — albeit a perfect one — to get an “A”. Well, came grading time and a curious fact emerged: the works of highest quality were all produced by the group being graded for quantity. It seems that while the “quantity” group was busily churning out piles of work – and learning from their mistakes — the “quality” group had sat theorizing about perfection, and in the end had little more to show for their efforts than grandiose theories and a pile of dead clay.

Art & Fear

Malcolm Gladwell’s popular “10,000 hour rule” is often interpreted as “10,000 hours of practice makes you an expert”, but that’s wildly incorrect. He was talking about deliberate practice. Grueling, focused, deliberate practice is what grants you skill.

Persistence Creates Luck

Many people say that fame requires luck.

But luck requires opportunity, and opportunity is a matter of attempts.

If you flip 10 coins, your probabability of getting all heads is ½10 ≈ 0.01%. If you flip 10 coins, your probability of getting any heads is 1-½10 ≈ 99.9%.

And unintuitively, your probability of getting at least 4 heads in 10 coin tosses is ~83%! And with one more attempt, getting 4 heads out of 11 tosses is ~89%!

Most people believe that success is a matter of “all heads”. But with many things in life, you just need a “few heads” to take you to the top.


Err on the side of persistence.

Foster habits and systems that encourage attempts.

Create junk. And lots of it.