In my naivety, I thought you just had to write and publish a book to be an author, but apparently there’s more to it than that, and I’m not sure I qualify on any of these stringent criteria.
He, like many other people of his day, thought that an author must be a jovial fellow, a rake, a drunkard, and a mountebank, something like a clown.
See another author’s comment on the high esteem in which his profession can be held.
Source: Ivan Goncharov, Oblomov, trans. David Magarshack (London: Penguin, 1954 (1859)), p. 138
Image credit: Rembrandt, The Mountebank, 1635, public domain