The secret to being a writer is to write.
Rand is a bit much. As a Heinlein fan, I am used to long self indulgent lectures, but Atlas Shrugged really takes the cake. At least Heinlein can be entertaining in between the "wise old man tells you how the world really works" moments. Shrugged never reached that level of readability.That's not to say there aren't a few interesting ideas in there (the looters versus produces stuff seems to ring true to a point), but there isn't enough there to really build an entire branch of philosophy on. One of the reasons the book has become so popular lately is because the current people in power are behaving and sounding like Randian villains. Life imitating art. The problem is that Rand's heroes are just as flawed as her villains, it's just that Rand doesn't recognize it. That is the problem with elites (and Rand is writing exclusively about such people, ordinary people don't exist in her world except as props), no matter how good they are at what they do, they are still subject to the same evolutionary baggage as the rest of us.