Yes, I am a writer and a published author, and I have to admit, writing is a rough business and a tough nut to crack. I practice my craft by writing daily. It's a nine to five job for me. Something that I love doing so I do it a great deal. I wish to continue to do it for the rest of my life. To say that I'm prolific is one thing, but determined, that's another.
I have several books and short stories out to publishers, and yet I have to build some sort of framework for a marketing plan. I never imagined that an author's life would involve marketing and promoting oneself, but believe me, it does. Without it, a publisher will question your commitment to the project, and rightly so. Your best advocate needs to be you.
So, if you're an aspiring writer, take the time and make an online presence. Use a blog if you must, that way you can have both a static and linear message to reach your readers and potential agents and publishers. It's a tough uphill climb and everyone has a path to success, theirs worked for them, but it might not for you. But as the saying goes, there's more than one way to skin a cat, and there's also more than one road to the rarefied heights. Remember that. Find your own path to success. Read some writer opinions, read some editor opinions, read some agent opinions, and then cobble together your own strategy.
If you read enough of the experts you'll quickly agree that their formulas and advice even conflict with each other. There is no plan etched in stone, never believe that there is. One thing I can tell you though. What will help you to victory at the end, is white hot determination. The will to NEVER give up, and sooner or later, you will get published, somehow, somewhere, you will get published. That, even the experts have to agree on.