Friday, November 13, 2009

The life of a writer, part LXMDVVVII

My friend Marilyn, who went through a few years when she supported herself by writing romance novels, posts a few anecdotes today that highlight the strange demands of genre work:
In the Secret Hours was even worse. It was my one & only book to have an exclusive distribution with Borders Books. I had just begun writing it. It was late May and I allegedly had until Labor Day to write a 255 page novel. But, oops! The publisher called in alarm to say there was some sort of misunderstanding in the contract and my novel had to be turned in by the 4th of July. I had 5 weeks to write an entire novel that I only had a vague storyline for. No outline, just some notes. It was really hell. I thought my fingers were going to fall off from all that marathon typing everyday-long-into-the-night. Not only that, but I seriously had to let the story tell itself. Whatever the fuck came out onto the paper became "the novel." It was a real nightmare for me. And when the reviews came out and were bad, well, what are you going to say? Complain about the fuck up in your deadline? It just makes you look like a cry baby.
Read the whole entry.

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