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Sunday Times Books LIVE

Cat Hellisen

@ Sunday Times Books LIVE



That’s what readers always say after finishing an amazing book. Trufact.

You know that’s not true. Or at least, it shouldn’t be. Every time I finish a book that made me happy, I go hunt down all the writer’s other titles, stalk them to find out what books they’re reading*, and look for recs for similar titles.

Because here’s the big truth: OTHER WRITERS ARE NOT THE ENEMY. So That Writer You Vaguely Know Online sold 60 000 books and you sold 6? She’s not the reason your book tanked.

Reading an amazing book and then keeping quiet about it in case she/he gets more sales while you cry into your cereal-spattered dressing-gown is not the solution. Tell people about the books you enjoyed, and be supportive of other writers in the industry. This doesn’t mean promoting books you think were great steaming piles of dung in the hopes that the author will promote you back. Inauthenticity is lame. I can smell it on you like the stink of yesterday’s vodka tears.

Be genuinely enthusiastic and supportive of work you think is good. Because I find it hard to believe that by supporting other writers you are somehow “losing” readers to them. Readers are voracious. You should know – you are one.

* Hush. I can’t be the only one who does this.


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