Traditional Publishing

Five dos and five don’ts of writing (or how to get ahead in the literary world) – Thursday August 25, 2022

Do think about your legacy A great many female writers have been ‘reclaimed’ in the past few years, but God forbid that ever happens to me. Reclamation is like having your corpse exhumed by an academic for forensic purposes. To avoid this, I plan to keep publishing in perpetuity. I’ve already given the Linenhall Library a novel to be released after my death on January 1st, 2070 – save the date!

Don’t fall prey to those sombre enemies of art that can distract you at every turn These days, it’s not the pram in the hall that will prevent you, but the phone in the pocket, the Google on the PC, the beeping text or Twitter. To paraphrase the Timothy Leary sixties anthem, ‘Turn off, tune out, log out’. Don’t waste your time tweeting because it’s not like a literary letter and no one’s going to publish your Collected Tweets Vols I and II. Twitter is more ephemeral than a mayfly’s breath. Instead, live the literary dream and exude writing: breathe it, bleed it, breed it, even eat it. For instance, if you come to my house tonight, I’ll be serving Flan O’Brien for starters, followed by Irish Stew-art Parker, topped off with Donna Tartt and custard.

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