Last century, the Beatles had a song about a guy who wanted to be a 'paperback writer'. They made it sound sordid and cheap, but even back then, I knew that's what I wanted to be.
If you want to analyze it, it was a logical decision, formed at a very young age. Even as a kid, my favorite form of self-entertainment was to write stories. My favorite type of stories to read was science fiction, since fantasy wasn't as prevalent back then. Once I finished the 3 or 4 sf titles in the school library, and the 1 shelf of sf in the town library, I would save what change I could and go buy my own book.
I grew up in towns so small, there was nothing resembling a book store. The drug store had some comic books and a revolving rack of paperbacks, mostly romances and westerns. I was so young, I don't think I realized books came in hardback except in schools and libraries. So, if I was going to write, obviously I would expect to be a paperback writer.
I'm grown up now, but I still write. I still dream of having paperback books on the shelves with my name as the author. I don't care so much about seeing my name on hardbacks, but if/when it happens, great. Ebooks are the coming thing, and that would be great, too. But I really, really want a physical paperback, not too expensive, but something I can hold in my hands and autograph for fans.
I'm not quite as desperate as the guy the Beatles sang about, but I am just as determined. I want to be a paperback writer!