Good pal Anita Davison has a blog up today entitled Jane Austen Didn't Have a Critique Group, and the thought made me smile. But for all we know, she may well have the equivalent around her in family and friends. I know she supposedly wrote in secret, but given the time writing a novel longhand takes, her sister at the very least must have been curious. How many letters can one person write? Especially when they don't go out to the post!
The main thrust of Anita's piece is that everyone seems to be writing a book these days. Anita and I live at opposite ends of the country, and I can safely say that but for the twenty or so people in my writers' group, no one else I know is a) writing a book or b) interested in writing one. Unless they're doing a Jane Austen and keeping quiet about it.
But like Anita, I deplore the number of celebrity novels out on sale. Some of them are not celebrities in my mind. I used to read Hello and OK magazines occasionally - mainly because I liked their range of photographs, but these days I recognise very few of the so called "celebs." A case in point - until yesterday I had never heard of the latest, greatest ever boyband One Direction. Now I've seen them, they look like very young teenagers, all with carefully coiffed hair. I know the Beatles looked young when they first hit the world, but heavens! this lot talk about it being difficult to leave their mums to go on tour! One wonders if they're old enough to go into a pub and order a drink.
I bought Rafa's biography because I'm interested in his tennis career. He was 25 when it came out, but in tennis terms, he'd had a life as a pro player from fifteen or sixteen. I suppose people buy celeb biogs because they're interested in acting or being a celeb themselves. Maybe they want to know how those people made it through the crowds of other young hopefuls. It's almost the same thing as everyone wanting to write a novel - everyone wants to be famous these days.
Here's a link to Anita's blog: http://thedisorganisedauthor.blogspot.co.uk