What does one do when their pursuit of literary greatness is impeded by fumes from a nearby factory?
No problem, you switch to writing crime novels.
"Joan Brady, who beat Andrew Motion and Carol Anne Duffy to win the Whitbread Prize in 1993 with her book The Theory of War, has received £115,000 in an out-of-court settlement after she suffered numbness in her hands and legs allegedly caused by solvents used by Conker, a cobbler based next to her home in Totnes, Devon.
She told The Times that the fumes were so bad that she was unable to concentrate on writing her highbrow novel, Cool Wind from the Future, and instead wrote a brutal crime story, Bleedout, which she found easier. The violent plot of the book also allowed her to vent her frustrations on the factory and South Hams District Council, which failed initially to detect the smells. According to Nielsen Book-scan, Bleedout has sold a respectable 10,000 copies."
There are literary efforts that don't sell a tenth of Brady''s crime novel. I'm not suggesting that Brady's affliction has no merit, but surely the sales of the crime novel and the settlement can be parlayed into a down payment on a house in more suitable surroundings?
Posted by Dave