Friday, 16 January 2009

Mixed links and opinions

Monix of Random Distractions has posted this amusing video about useless female junk in lofts and useless macho stuff in drawers. Do watch it. Trouble is, I'm the one with boxes full of mysterious electric leads, keys and stuff that Cannot Be Thrown Away in Case..

Jean McLeod is 101 and still writing for Mills & Boon - see Daily Mail. 'I never use the word 'sex' in my novels - that is not what romance is about. It's about love and emotion.
'Michael Boon, the original proprietor's son, ....told me never to write anything a mother wouldn't want her daughter to read.'
Mrs MacLeod was a member of the Romantic Novelists' Association and as a result, knew famed romance novelist Barbara Cartland. 'Mills & Boon always had a champagne tent on Ladies' Day at Ascot for their authors. One year, Barbara sauntered over and dismissively asked, "Wearing the same outfit twice, Jean? Are things really that hard?"
'I didn't dignify it with a response - she was known for her sharp remarks.'

According to Libby Purves, Philip Larkin reckoned there were three tests of a novel. 'Do I believe in it? Do I care? Will I go on caring?' That's spot on. My own test is, 'If I left this novel on a train by accident, would I buy another copy?', but have to say P.Larkin puts it more elegantly. Today during an otherwise balanced Times article Libby denounces chick lit, which seems a bit harsh, considering how many women are cheered while harmlessly dreaming about Prince Charming. All young women like shopping. They mostly grow out of it. To my mind, drop-in plastic surgery progs on TV do far more potential harm.

1 comment:

JJ said...

Larkin may have put it more elegantly, but the truth is in the train example. Would I part with more cash to finish the book?

Yes, it's wonderful to find a book that you believe in and continue to think about and care for ... but buying the book again? That's what it comes down to for me.