Writing [Tutorial] The Secret to Proper Paragraphing and Dialogue

Biggest-Kusa-Out-There

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948EB677-BA46-41F5-9A0E-4C6B20BA4378.jpeg

Huh...
Paul Scott's "The Jewel in the Crown", book 1 of 4 (The Raj Quartet). First Published in Great Britain in 1966. September, 1979 edition by AVON BOOKS, New York, New York, United States of America. Best Seller at the time.
 
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LostLibrarian

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We are definitely going to disagree on this topic.
Which is fine. Even facial expressions are a form of movement description, so if you have a lot of it, it still can feel overdone. It can even become comically. Or it can take away from the actual focus of the scene.

I didn't say "it will". But there is a fine line. "Just use action instead of said" doesn't make everything better all the time. It makes most stuff better most of the time, which is why it is a rule for writing. But that's it.

It's probably more the question of "how far/much" instead of the rule itself, that becomes our discussion point.

My editors (I have four,) will disagree with you -- loudly and at length. 'Said' does NOT get filtered out by the reader. They just put up with it because they want to read the story more. I certainly do not filter out 'said.' In fact if I see too many 'saids' in a story, I stop reading it. I have no interest in reading any story that takes work to comprehend.
Which is their fair right. I know other editors who see that in a different light. In the end, it is also something that really depends on your target audience, their level of reading experience, etc. There are a ton of rules and opinions on certain topics and they often differ on who they target.

In the end, it's a simple matter of balance. Like with most of the stuff we disagree over, it is a question of "follow the direction of a rule" or "follow the rule to a T". And if you look closer at pumping out books targeted at a certain audience, working with certain editors, that is perfectly fine.

Some editors might strike my writing, others might take stuff from me but not from you. We will never know, because I won't publish my scribbles, anyway. And yeah, I would most likely have no success in traditional publishing, because I don't have the time to edit my story ten times over up to the needed level.

So yeah, from the view of someone who wants to break into traditional publishing, following the rule all the time might be better, instead of going with the flow. But on a free publishing website, where any kind of stuff can be published, those last 5% won't make or break a story. Example A: my unedited scribbles.

Passive Voice --Telling-- is a huge no-no in English fiction! You're supposed to Show --Active Voice-- a story! Who told you it was okay to use Passive Voice in fiction?! They need to be slapped!
I mean, that would be another massive discussion out of topic here. I personally disagree with the "Show instead of tell all the time no matter the price" rule obsession some authors and editors have. And I disagree even more with the "never passive voice"-obsession. Simple as that.

-----------------
I could counter with: The same people who say this, are the same people who said "Harry Potter will never sell."

All were well furnished by Elrond with thick warm clothes, and they had jackets and cloaks linedwith fur. Spare food and clothes and blankets and other needs were laden on a pony, none other than the poor beast that they had brought from Bree.
I could point at the Lord of the Rings. I guess, with all that passive voice, Tolkien needs to be slapped. Damn, I guess he will have no success as writer.

"What should we drink?" the girl asked. She had taken off her hat and put it on the table.
"It's pretty hot," the man said.
"Let's drink beer."
"Dos cervezas," the man said into the curtain.
Or point at Hemingway who used "X said", "Y asked" all the time. 10 times a page, 30+ times in a short story. Following those rules, Hemingway is a hack who shouldn't have been published...

But the fact is. I simply think, that following a rule 99% of the time is enough when it comes to stuff such as "Show don't tell" or "Passive/active voice".
--------------------------------------

Once more: I agree with the core of the rules. Active instead of passive voice. New paragraphs to make things easier to read and understand. Don't overuse stuff. Don't repeat certain words too often. There is a lot to that. But those rules are based on past experiences concerning the majority of stuff that worked well, not all the stuff. And it was more than once that authors broke those ironclad rules and still had success without problem.

That said, I don't say new authors should break rules or don't care about them. The opposite! But people also shouldn't treat them as the one and only truth of writing. It is a good sign towards the right direction and following it will make your book more appealing to the masses. Especially in the beginning, those rules are really important because they help to write a readable book.

But 2 or 3 passive lines in a chapter won't destroy the flow, appeal, or enjoyment of your story. It's about reducing the bad habits of (new/inexperienced) authors, not eradicating a threat to proper writing...

-------------------------------------------


Writing rules are important and show don't tell exist for a reason. Because it is more engaging to read a story that is written in active voice. Engagements means entertainment, entertainment means sells. But to that end, those rules are targeted especially at new writers, who will err on the side of "too much passive voice".

Show don't tell doesn't mean you can't have any passive voice at all in your text. I mean the origin of show don't tell goes even further than "no passive voice" and would bloat a text so much, that most people nowadays would never read it anymore due to "way too much unnecessary detail on the description".

There is a fine line between a working rule used as a guideline and obsession over a half-sentence in a 50k word story...


Breaking the rules of writing is like stunt driving.
-- Only experienced professionals should do it. Anyone else will just cause a wreck.
But on the other hand there is also that:
Editors want to sell books and will try to predict what sells based on the past. Which also means, they are often behind their times until something new sells so well, all the editors ran and buy the copies of that same story, flooding the market with the usual twilight or 50 shades clones.

Which is no dig against authors. They have a very specific job: Find a story that sells the most copies for the least amount of money/work. That's it. And a majority of them are doing a great job for sure. But still, they aren't failproof either...
 
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K5Rakitan

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I listen to manuscripts before I look at them, so that doesn't even enter into whether I accept something or not. It can all be fixed later, if needed.
 

Snusmumriken

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Dude! I realize that JP, KR, and CN fiction ARE written in passive voice, but English fiction Is Not! In those languages, it's actually considered Rude to speak or write directly -- in Active Voice.

Passive Voice --Telling-- is a huge no-no in English fiction! You're supposed to Show --Active Voice-- a story! Who told you it was okay to use Passive Voice in fiction?! They need to be slapped!
Passive voice isn't always telling. And I am not sure why it is a huge no-no at all.

"In the afternoon haze, the sun was stalked by the clouds" is a passive voice and it is fairly descriptive. moreover it allows me to put the accent on the sun while maintaining its 'vulnerable' position. Saying that something like that in a complete no-no in English would be a disservice.
Breaking the rules of writing is like stunt driving.
-- Only experienced professionals should do it. Anyone else will just cause a wreck.
I would disagree with you hard here.

ScribbleHub is exactly the place to play with your ability to write. you are free to publish your chapters and the worst you will get from it would be confused comments or perhaps a drop in readership. And if you are relying on patreons then you are technically a professional author then anyway. Saying you can't break the rules is almost like saying you can't doodle and experiment with different styles on a free picture hosting sites.

Granted you shouldn't dive in without being ready like you wouldn't just dive into a free community pool. start slow get your bearings and then, once you feel ready - try new things.
 

LostLibrarian

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I listen to manuscripts before I look at them, so that doesn't even enter into whether I accept something or not. It can all be fixed later, if needed.
I mean the biggest question is also, what kind of editor someone is and what his direct task is.

That can differ from people who get promising authors, work with them to better their writing, and then publish their writing up to the mass acquisitions of books to fill slots for the major publishers. Those two are completely different fields.

And a lot of modern advice is geared towards the latter: "How to write the perfect book for mass appeal, so that those editors with little time can nod at it, buy it, and throw your twilight clone out in the hope of making some quick money before the hype dies down."

Doesn't make the rules or advice wrong or misleading. But it shows how there is a different set of rules depending on the publisher, the target audience, or even the genre. We had a writing convention a few years back where some editors had panels. People asked the editor of a YA-publisher about his rules for success. Half of them ended in the "no-go" section of the next editor, talking about Sci-Fi.


Editors are great workers, important to the publishing process, and often really knowledgable about stuff authors never heard about. But it is important to remember that they still have a certain job to do. And their position or requirements might change with it. The rules, that we agreed on, is that: something the majority of works can be summed up under because those stories worked within a certain frame or writing style...
 

OokamiKasumi

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I read this thread and man, I don't know... I straight laughed how bad am I actually right now. I was new to this writing stuff and when I saw my story literally against a lot points on these... I guess I ducked up xD I'm using a lot of words "said" in my fanfic because that's what I picture it when they do dialogue.
There's no way you could have known. This stuff is Not Talked About anywhere. It's not in any how-to writing book either. I'm dropping Industry level secrets here -- seriously.

I only found out about all this the hard way -- after I signed a book contract and got my manuscript back from the editor. There was so much red ink --on every page-- I thought the pages were bleeding. I had to take out all the head-hopping, remove all the 'saids', erase all the passive voice, and restructure every single paragraph by character actions. In short; rewrite the entire 100k manuscript or they wouldn't publish it.

The most common reason people overuse 'said' is because so many Badly Edited novels are published using it. Even worse, the more money an author makes, the less likely an editor's advice will be followed.

Stephan King, Laurell K. Hamilton, and the top romance authors in the USA all have contracts stating that they don't need editors. I got news for them: YES They Do. Badly.

Just as an example, the number one Romance Author head-hops from one POV to the next nearly every other paragraph, and overuses 'said.' It's gotten so bad that all her conversations read like her characters are standing in a blank white room -- no backdrop or action at all.​

So technically speaking, it's not your fault for copying their bad writing. After all, they're supposed to be professionals, right?

I guess that's also the reason why my fic rating goes beyond low.
Reading comprehension is the most common reason for low ratings.
-- How clearly can your readers imagine the scenes you write?

Best way to fix this? Get at least two of your fans to beta-read each chapter before you post. Pay Attention to what they say. They won't always agree, and this is a good thing! It gives you wiggle room to adjust things.

It might hard for me to change though, I realize it.
It is hard -- so Don't Change what you've already posted!
-- Instead, just write your next chapters fresh and see if your readers notice. I promise you, they will.
Later -- much later, you can rewrite those earlier chapters and replace them, one at a time.

I'm also, frankly speaking, pretty follow up visual novel player besides reader of fiction as a hobby... well, comparing both of them I like the format of the visual novel more so when I write my stuff what I imagine was kinda reflected in that format... which is mostly first POV and simple sentence shorts.

And yes, ton of dialogues.
LOL! I make visual novels as a hobby, so I understand. I have thirteen games completed so far, and some of them are definitely better than others. Want a peek?

--------------------------
The unknown guy wearing black tuxedo approached me.

"You suck" He said.

"Uhh what?"I replied.

...Why this guy suddenly mocked me?
--------------------------------------
Okay, this needs to be readjusted. Also, you really, really need to add description to your writing.

Visual Novels have pictures, sound effects, and music. Written stories don't, so you need to add all that stuff in using the written word or the story will read flat and blank like a Radio Show with no music or sound effects.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~
The unknown guy wearing a black tuxedo approached me.
-- Is he a kid, a boy, a teenager, an adult, or an old man?​
-- What color are his hair and eyes?​
-- What color are his clothes, and what style of tuxedo is it? A slim swallowtail, a skirted frock, a t-shirt with a tux printed on the front?​
-- What expression is on his face? A sneer? a glare? A smirk? A pout? Tears running down his cheeks? A dead-eyed stare?​
-- WHERE ARE YOU TWO?! A school hallway at midnight? A rainy junk-yard? The brightly lit bridge of a spaceship? An corpse strewn underground dungeon?​

"You suck." He said.

"Uhh what?" I replied.
-- What expression is on your face?​
-- What are you wearing? A middle-school sailor uniform? A bulky spacesuit? A full-skirted ball gown encrusted with shimmering crystals? A pink t-shirt and khaki shorts? Bright green flannel pajamas? A scarlet semi-transparent negligee?​
-- What are you holding?​

...Why this guy suddenly mocked me? <-- Bad Grammar, and bad punctuation.
-- Punctuation: English does Not use ellipses (. . .) in front of sentences EVER. That's a Japanese convention that got carried over by translators who simply don't know better.​
-- Grammar: You skipped a word, and Direct Thoughts are written in Present Tense and italicized.​

Why is this guy suddenly mocking me?
~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Adjusted:
~~~~~~~~~~~~~
The unknown guy wearing a black tuxedo approached me. (Insert facial expression.) "You suck."

"Uhh what?" (Insert facial expression and feelings.) Why is this guy mocking me?
~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I should know that it should be fine to not use "said" there, but my brain just told me something wrong with it... like... usually I play VN when a dialogue happens there would be a name of the person who currently talking, then followed by action afterward. At first time writing, I'm even using (character name) but my friend told me it was ugly.
The way VNs are written, especially the dialogue, is not how one would write a story in English.
-- First of all, the punctuation is usually Japan-glish; Japanese application of English punctuation. For example, how Japan uses Ellipses vs. the English usage, and Japanese quotation marks are Boxes [ ]. Also, they write out sound-effects and treat them like dialogue. English Does Not. In addition, they separate the lines of dialogue from everything else -- which is how you wrote your example.

If you want to write stories in English, I suggest reading books written in English by native English speakers. It still won't be perfect, editors mess up too, but it'll be a lot closer to how stories are actually written than any VN.

Well, this is really good advice.. Thanks.
You're very welcome. I hope it helps.

I will try to ignore my brain from now on.. or at least reduce it.

Now I need to sleep, my brain refused but my body need it.
You can't help what you're used to reading. If all you've read are translations from other languages, then the common mistakes those translators make are going to be imprinted on your memory as being correct.

THIS is why so many new writers use ellipses (. . .) as a pause in their sentences, when in English, the ellipses Does Not represent a pause, it represents Missing or Skipped Words.

Good night! ✨
 

Biggest-Kusa-Out-There

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This is too similar to the music industry.
Producers will say "Nah, this won't sell because people don't like that."
Like... who the fuck is the producer/editor to know everyone who might pick the product?
Books/Music used to be much more liberal in their expression and contents, especially in how they were constructed because the producer/editor had no fucking clue, so they just relased them and they made huge hits, earning millions and making waves.
The entire Hip Hop / Rap scene was people recording their bars, slapping a track, and then throwing it to the wind, and people consumed the product like rabid dogs because the consumer curated what they bought, not a snobby know-it-all producer that thinks they know shit about audiences.

Look at the examples given, the people you quote as 'they set the rule' broke it themselves. Best sellers didn't follow these rules, genre defining fictions didn't follow these rules. None of those rules. You have floating heads on Tolkien, Dostoyevskiy, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, John Wyndham, E.M. Foster, and many, many more. They are known for their works everywhere because they had the liberty of not following these rules to the T, or not at all. Not because of their styles per se, but because of their stories.

If you say you don't read works that don't follow these rules, I'll go ahead and assume you haven't read anything from before 2010. That's when people began preaching 'show, don't tell' as if it holds any water what.so.ever. Previous works make use of passive voice in ways that would disgust you, apparently.
 

Reisinling

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There is a reason why this particular book is used as a College textbook.

What a lot of people don't know is that Strunk & White's book was first written in the late 1800's. It has since been...abridged many, many times since then. However, quite a bit of the original language is still in there and this has caused no end of problems with those who don't read actual literature.
I'm sorry by being so lazy on post you made, but I also remember quite a few authors questioning many style rules that were created over the years. Sanderson quite likely the most famous on this forum, especially the one about not using dialogue tags.

I'm just torn between "these people have shit ton of experience, they quite likely know better" and "these people are writing for completely different audience and purpose, it might not work here"
 

Mysticant

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I mean I understand this from both sides. But this is a webnovel site of such you freaking read smut and stuff that some kindergarteners could write better. If you really want to get some entry-level publishing crap, yeah the advice given by OP is quite relevant. But if you are doing it for fun and not money, just do whatever. Entry-level is entry-level because it is a rough but useful set of guidelines. Major authors will have their own style of writing even if they break these rules. Are the rules or are they wrong? Most likely neither since both know what is right and what they operate on. I would say a large proportion of us know what we want to write and how we want to write it. I won't bash him because it is his right to give his opinion and our own right whether we want to listen or not.
 

LostLibrarian

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This is too similar to the music industry.
It reminds me more of the AAA gaming industry. We have a standard and just throw stuff out in that standard, then someone does something different and it works, so afterwards everyone does that exact same thing and nothing else.

Horror games are dead. Indie horror games are successful. Time to bring horror games back...

I mean it is the AAA industry no matter the entertainment. The reason we get 100 battle royal clones, 100 magic school clones after harry potter, 100 twilight clones, 100 hunger games clones, etc. Because major player stick to what sells, before something else is cool and then they all crowd to it...
 

Anon_Y_Mousse

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Well, I agree with this, mostly. When it comes to the 'remove said' part, I think that fits in a short dialogue exchange.
However, in my story there are scenes 3k words long where a few characters just talk to each other, it gets quite hard to keep showing there. Character X can't be biting that piece of cake for four paragraphs straight and Character Y certainly wouldn't change his facial expression every time he says a new piece of dialogue. Perhaps this is just a lack of skill in my part, but I find it easier to just put X spoke, X questioned, X responded etc.
 

LilTV1155

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Rules or not.

Just make your story and characters clear to everyone.

If we are talking about details, you either draw it yourself and post regardless of bad skill. Or just paint a picture of descriptions for other to follow.

Avoid misspellings if you can. Don't be mean if you can. If you can't, then just say "Cookie."

When it come to writing, one thing readers would like to know is this:
What do you want to tell us about your "world"?
 
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OokamiKasumi

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Imo you can have actions taking place after the speech - if that is their place. The action before dialogue is only for the actions that modify the first line of dialogue or set the mood for the speech. You can have characters start off one way and collapse in the middle of the monologue and describing that before the actual collapse would ruin the impact.
Absolutely.

The problem is that too many new writers are cutting the dialogue away from the actions that should go with them entirely. This is a grammar style picked up from reading CN, KR, and JP translations -- and it's wrong for English.

In terms of "said" I find it useful sometimes to establish the actors of the dialogue exactly for its invisibility to the readers.
It's NOT invisible. I'm a reader myself and I notice each and every said used.

[said] isn't used often but sometimes you want just their voice to be heard without any actions associated with it. and for these moments it works flawlessly. A good example would be an oblivious POV or a character that tries to hide their body language. Or simply unseen by the POV.
Using 'said' is Not against the grammar rules.

I just hate reading that damned word over, and over, and over...
 

Biggest-Kusa-Out-There

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It reminds me more of the AAA gaming industry. We have a standard and just throw stuff out in that standard, then someone does something different and it works, so afterwards everyone does that exact same thing and nothing else.

Horror games are dead. Indie horror games are successful. Time to bring horror games back...

I mean it is the AAA industry no matter the entertainment. The reason we get 100 battle royal clones, 100 magic school clones after harry potter, 100 twilight clones, 100 hunger games clones, etc. Because major player stick to what sells, before something else is cool and then they all crowd to it...
Yeah, and small studios become AAA because of a game nobody believed in *cough cough* Witcher 3 *cough cough*, but then they try and follow the trend and the entirety of humanity clowns on them. They lose money, they lose respect, they lose trust. Following the rules in the entertainment industry is not as profitable as it's advertised.

My Conspiracy Theory: Maybe those authors invented these rules so we as small authors fail. They themselves didn't follow the rules and became huge hits.
 

LilTV1155

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Absolutely.

The problem is that too many new writers are cutting the dialogue away from the actions that should go with them entirely. This is a grammar style picked up from reading CN, KR, and JP translations -- and it's wrong for English.


It's NOT invisible. I'm a reader myself and I notice each and every said used.


Using 'said' is Not against the grammar rules.

I just hate reading that damned word over, and over, and over...
In English, please give us two or three examples of how to combine dialogues and actions.

I would like to have some references to check with. By the way, do not throw textbook pictures at us. It's hard to learn anything from that.

Just use your own words.
 
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Biggest-Kusa-Out-There

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The problem is that too many new writers are cutting the dialogue away from the actions that should go with them entirely. This is a grammar style picked up from reading CN, KR, and JP translations -- and it's wrong for English.
Now you're smoking something, or actively ignoring other's evidence that disprove the rules you bring up. Nothing is wrong for english if it follows english grammar. Period. You are free to dislike it, but unfortunately you're not on my city's Bookstore shelves so your opinion is just that. An opinion. You set no standard and the examples you bring up are full of holes with factual evidence commenters have provided.
 

Snusmumriken

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Absolutely.

The problem is that too many new writers are cutting the dialogue away from the actions that should go with them entirely. This is a grammar style picked up from reading CN, KR, and JP translations -- and it's wrong for English.


It's NOT invisible. I'm a reader myself and I notice each and every said used.


Using 'said' is Not against the grammar rules.

I just hate reading that damned word over, and over, and over...
The issue was in the phrasing of your 1st post. You were wording them as categorical "No" which is what I had an issue with. I am aware that overusing "said" is bad, but saying that it should always be cut out is wrong too.
I have done editing myself before. And I've read the works of authors who followed these rules by the letter.
Their. Work. Was. Dry.
Sentences were clear, active voice, no mistakes. no tells only shows. and reading it felt like eating sand. Whatever spark of style they once had was choked by the unnecessary rules they felt obligated to follow or else.
 

LostLibrarian

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Sentences were clear, active voice, no mistakes. no tells only shows. and reading it felt like eating sand.
I think the biggest problem is that: a lot of people fuss so much over grammar and style rules, they forget that they are telling a story.

Nothing against people who love to edit their work 30 times to have the perfect prose. But some of them should have read one or two books about story structures or genre conventions, instead.



I mean the reason we get those "out of nowhere successes" is often that these people tried a new story, a new genre, or a new theme and it clicked with the audience. A working story is the most important part of any book, 100 times more important than the actual writing. It's the reason people read through really crappy translations, because they like the story and characters and want to read more.

I mean all those style rules and grammar rules and all are really important. Even in free online-publishing they can still help a lot. But we see stories with 2 problems in each sentence have double the readership of stories with perfect grammar.

So I think, the most important thing is to learn how to get your story right. And for that, one has to learn how to make clear what is happening, who is talking, etc. But further than that, we'll end in wars of believe over small details, completely forgetting that, in the end, a book is about... its story.
 

OokamiKasumi

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Huh...

Paul Scott's "The Jewel in the Crown", book 1 of 4 (The Raj Quartet). First Published in Great Britain in 1966. September, 1979 edition by AVON BOOKS, New York, New York, United States of America. Best Seller at the time.

Just because something was published before does not mean that current publishers will accept it.

Publishers toss Booker winners into the reject pile​

The Sunday Times -- January 01, 2006
Jonathan Calvert and Will Iredale

THEY can’t judge a book without its cover. Publishers and agents have rejected two Booker prize-winning novels submitted as works by aspiring authors.

One of the books considered unworthy by the publishing industry was by V S Naipaul, one of Britain’s greatest living writers, who won the Nobel prize for literature.

The exercise by The Sunday Times draws attention to concerns that the industry has become incapable of spotting genuine literary talent.

Typed manuscripts of the opening chapters of Naipaul’s In a Free State and a second novel, Holiday, by Stanley Middleton, were sent to 20 publishers and agents.

None appears to have recognised them as Booker prizewinners from the 1970s that were lauded as British novel writing at its best. Of the 21 replies, all but one were rejections.

Only Barbara Levy, a London literary agent, expressed an interest, and that was for Middleton’s novel.

She was unimpressed by Naipaul’s book. She wrote: “We . . . thought it was quite original. In the end though I’m afraid we just weren’t quite enthusiastic enough to be able to offer to take things further.”

The rejections for Middleton’s book came from major publishing houses such as Bloomsbury and Time Warner as well as well-known agents such as Christopher Little, who discovered J K Rowling.

The major literary agencies PFD, Blake Friedmann and Lucas Alexander Whitley all turned down V S Naipaul’s book, which has received only a handful of replies.

Critics say the publishing industry has become obsessed with celebrity authors and “bright marketable young things” at the expense of serious writers.

Most large publishers no longer accept unsolicited manuscripts from first-time authors, leaving the literary agencies to discover new talent.

Many of the agencies find it hard to cope with the volume of submissions. One said last week that she receives up to 50 manuscripts a day, but takes on a maximum of only six new writers a year.

Last week, leading literary figures expressed surprise that Naipaul, in particular, had not been talent spotted. Doris Lessing, the author who was once rejected by her own publishers when she submitted a novel under a pseudonym, said: “I’m astounded as Naipaul is an absolutely wonderful writer.”

Andrew Motion, the poet laureate, who teaches creative writing, said: “It is surprising that the people who read it (Naipaul’s book) didn’t recognise it. He is certainly up there as one of our greatest living writers.”

While arguing that the best books would still always find a publisher, he added: “We need to keep the publishers on their toes as good books are as rare as hens’ teeth.”

Middleton, 86, whose books have a devoted following, wasn’t surprised. “People don’t seem to know what a good novel is nowadays,” he said. Naipaul, 73, said the “world had moved on” since he wrote the novel. He added: “To see that something is well written and appetisingly written takes a lot of talent and there is not a great deal of that around.”

“With all the other forms of entertainment today there are very few people around who would understand what a good paragraph is.”

 

LostLibrarian

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Publishers toss Booker winners into the reject pile
I know it is meant to argue against "But XY did it" (which is an important point if one wants to get traditionally published), but this reads more like a plea to stop listening to stuck up their ass major house editors and go self-publishing :blobrofl:
 
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