Never going to be famous

I doubt one of my books will ever be discussed on Mariella Frostrup’s open book programme on radio four. I’m often in the car when this is on and listen to the books celebrities choose as their favourite reads.

I honestly have to say, ‘Why?’

“Of course the tale of the vagrant nose-flute player is a metaphor. I felt the descriptions posed a delightful juxta-position to the protagonist’s past life as a Hungarian sex worker.”

Do people really enjoy this stuff, or are they ashamed to admit to what they usually read? I don’t think anybody has ever chosen a book I have even heard of, let alone considered reading.

So, I’m resigned in my writing style. The best I can hope to do is offer an enjoyable read and leave lofty literary ideals to those obviously more intelligent than I am!
Okay, anybody who knows me would spot the lie. I rarely acknowledge the possibility of there being a greater intellect than mine. Thankfully, we can all be different. When it comes to reading, I have a relatively wide range.

My reading rules:

Rule one: I want my books to take me to foreign worlds. Give me monsters, space ships, or dragons. Don’t give me misery on Morecambe bay.

Rule two: the story has to move. If I’m still wondering what’s happening by page 60, I give up. I suspect this eliminates finer literature. I have occasionally broken this rule. Usually when I am on holiday and have run out of things to read, I invariably regret it.

Rule three: surprise me! Nothing worse than everything happening in the order I expect it to occur.

A simple set of rules, but I suspect these are the reason I find most prize-winning novels a chore.

Good job we can be different, isn’t it?

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