The Secret Author

The Secret Author is a former Professor of English and Creative Writing at a leading British university

The bright young things of publishing want to be involved in every line of every new book

Literature is the only art in which, it seems, every neophyte is convinced they can succeed

Even Booker Prize-winning novelists struggle to make a living from writing

The “golden years” of publishing were characterised by booze, bullying and amateurishness

Few things are more tedious than books moralising about the deficiencies of yesteryear

With scant audiences and paltry remuneration, author’s tours can be far from glamorous

Publishing professionals often speak in code, but our man on the inside is a cryptographer

The best agents are unobtrusive and make sure attention is focused on their writers

Why have we never heard of most of the young writers on the latest “Best of …” list?

The use of author testimonials to sell books is a performative exercise in gilding the lily