Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Just when I thought I couldn't love her more

Slagging another writer and the publishing industry as a whole is tough to do in the same interview, but to do it after being given a pretty sweet award is quite a rope trick.

Only someone with the steely gaze of a Lionel Shriver could pull it off.

From the Independent,

""It'd be totally hypocritical to discourage people from joining my profession, which was good to me in the end, but I have qualms about being encouraging. The odds are stacked against you. I want to give people enough of an idea of the capriciousness of the industry."

She went on to cast aspersions on the successes of some best-selling authors whose writing was simply not very good, she thought, but whose books were aided by the benefit of the powerful publishing publicity machine – citing Bret Easton Ellis' latest book, Imperial Bedrooms, as one such example.

"There are a lot of books that end up selling that aren't very good. I've just read Bret Easton Ellis' new book and it's awful but it's had a big publicity campaign.

"I'm writing a 1,500 word review of it – the size of which alone will overwhelm what I say. It's not a case of cream rising to the top but skimmed milk rising – of the 'no fat' kind. The book doesn't deserve the attention. It's ghastly. In the meantime, there are lots of books that will not be reviewed," she said."

Never mind the rough economics of the writing game, folks. The real fear is in getting reviewed by a bombproof novelist.

1 comment:

Chanda @ Disordered Cosmos said...

As an insane BEE fan, I for one will not be discouraged to contributing to his outrageous sales :-) I think people like to pick on BEE in particular.

That said, I suspect that Imperial Bedrooms, like Lunar Park before it, isn't really for the general reader. It's for the fans. There are pluses and minuses to that. I that it probably shouldn't get the enormous publicity machine. But I also think it's nice for a writer to have the chance to carry through an idea, especially if there's already an audience that's interested in sharing that journey. Ideally every writer gets to do this. The problem is that so few do. And when the chosen few do get a chance, it brings out all of the haters!

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