Thursday, 21 February 2008

Adrian Tomine's "Shelf Life "Is Enough to Make a Writer Weep--with Laughter and Despair

The New Yorker cover for the coming week depicts just what happens to many books. Entitled "Shelf Life," it shows graphically what a short time a book has to prove itself on the market place, and in people's hearts.

Not a cheery thought, as we prepare to launch The Violets of Usambara at the end of March. Plans are being made for launch party at Paragraphe Books Tuesday March 25 (along with Hélène Dorion whose Days of Sands, translated by Jonathan Kaplansky, is also being published by Cormorant this spring) and for one featuring Violets alone in Montreal's Mile End district where half the book takes place. That one will be Wednesday, April 2, at Librairie l'Écume des jours: more details coming up later.

The New Yorker, bless its elitist little head, has had a string of articles lately about publishing and editing, which I've commented on previously. Anyone who has literary ambitions ought to read them. But this new cover shows just what a writer is up against. Writing is tough work, and then you get burned.


Anne C. said...

Oh, oh, you're sounding uncharacteristically pessimistic at what should be an exciting time. Wishing your new novel a great launch!

Mary Soderstrom said...

Thanks for your good wishes. Invitations will follow.

And of course I'm an optimist: a pessimist wouldn't keep at this writing biz very long.