Sunday, 30 August 2015

Interesting Blogs: Can a Novelist be too Productive

One of the mantras of this genre is that we have to release regularly, preferably every four to six weeks to be able to survive. As my post earlier today says that still doesn't help, but that's not the point here. Stephen King's article in the the New York Times asks if being a prolific writer precludes quality.

I don't believe it does and I have little patience with the snobbery that goes with literary criticism. One book every twenty years is not an indication of quality.  It's ironic that the authors he speaks of so disparagingly, John Creasey and Barbara Cartland, were favourites of my youth. However the article is interesting and worth a read.

As with most postulates dealing with subjective perceptions, the idea that prolific writing equals bad writing must be treated with caution. Mostly, it seems to be true. Certainly no one is going to induct the mystery novelist John Creasey, author of 564 novels under 21 different pseudonyms, into the Literary Hall of Heroes; both he and his creations (the Toff, Inspector Roger West, Sexton Blake, etc.) have largely been forgotten.
The same is true of the British novelist Ursula Bloom (over 500 published works, under many pseudonyms), Barbara Cartland (over 700) and a host of others. One is reminded of Truman Capote’s famous bon mot about Jack Kerouac: “That’s not writing, that’s typing.” Read the rest here... 

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