Alison Clement

observations from a novelist who sometimes wants to say something small and see it published immediately

if I knew how to take advice

I’ve been writing all my life and sometimes I’ve felt bad for doing it too much, and other times I’ve felt bad for doing it too little. Sometimes I’ve felt that my writing is exactly what it needs to be. I mean not that it’s perfect, but it’s mine. When my second novel was published, my agent then told me to next write something like Jennifer Weiner’s GOOD IN BED, an international bestselling chick lit novel that is written by Jennifer Weiner who is the best at writing Jennifer Weiner because she is Jennifer Weiner. Maybe if I’d taken my agent’s advice, I’d be more successful, whatever that is. Have more money.  Instead, I started writing a novel about eugenics.
zoe book cover

Categories: art, belief, books, eugenics, gender, memoir, publishing, writing

Tags: , , ,

4 replies

  1. You are great at being you, keep on doing it! I recently was going through a bookshelf, throwing away things that I had already read and was running out of room for. I ran a crossed pretty is as pretty does. I started reading it again, totally hooked after the first page! I’ll be reading the whole thing again. Mostly because I don’t remember what I read the first time. I really like that the first time, but it seems a lot better now.

    • Thank you, drumdude, for your kind words. It’s hard to write without self-consciousness after you get published. At least it has been for me. PRETTY may not be as technically as good as other stories I’ve written, but there’s a freedom in it I can’t ever quite get back to.

  2. If you had taken her advice you would be Jennifer Weiner, not Alison Clement! Does that mean I should be painting like Picasso ?? Shame on your agent – your creative ‘art’ is You, not some other author’s. This is one piece of advice that deserves ignoring – maybe the query should be, do you need a new agent? We love your writing for the stories you tell!

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