I was just watching an interview with the head of creative development at Harper Collins publishers (see link on my Twitter feed from @HarperCollins) who referred to unpublished authors, as “wannabes.” While this term is technically accurate, it feels insulting The Urban Dictionary defines a “wannabe” as,
Poser, follower, a charlatan of sorts. One who copies or immitates [SIC] all or most of the aspects dealing with their idol. They may wish to have certain clothing, skills, vocabulary, etc., of their idols instead of their own. Most likely a wannabe is lacking in self confidence and is looking for guidance.
Not very flattering! I think the Urban Dictionary’s second definition is a little closer the mark in this situation,
Someone who wants to be what they are not.
I think a better term is “gonnabe.”