Saturday, 8 February 2014


I have noticed that two of the most prolific fiction authors, Tom Clancy and James Patterson,
frequently write their books in conjunction with another person. Like that book shown on the right: TOM CLANCY with Mark Greaney.  I have often thought it something of a cop-out, to have a book published ostensibly as one's own when another person has contributed to a greater or lesser extent.  But to what extent did Mr Greaney contribute to Threat Vector?  Presumably it was a reasonably significant contribution he made or his name would not be seen on the front cover, even if it is in very much smaller print than Mr Clancy's name.  This matter of an author "with" another writer is something that has been puzzling me off and on for some time, possibly even years.  This week, though, my puzzlement reached greater heights still.  Or greater depths.  Whichever seems the more apt.

A friend whose taste in reading matter is not a million miles away from mine recommended an author of whom I had not heard, or perhaps whose books I had not really looked at when visiting the library.  Anyway, when I was at the library earlier this week, I borrowed a book by Nicci French.  Whether or not it is to my liking I cannot yet say as I have only just started it.  But I was surprised to find that Nicci French is not actually a person.  or rather, she is not just one person.  "She" is two people, husband-and-wife team Nicci Gerrard and Sean French.  And just how, I wondered, do they set about writing a book between them?  I had visions of them sitting side by side, fighting for control of the keyboard.  Or perhaps they take it in turns to write the chapters, a bit like the old party game of consequences.

And it turns out that that is exactly what they do, as they explain on their web site.


We had some blue sky again yesterday.  I decided that the grass of Stanmer Park would be the best place for walking the dog as the woodland paths are so squelchy and muddy.  I was surprised that so few others had made the same decision as I had.


joeh said...

I am a/was a big fan of James Patterson. I stay away from all his "also by" books. I believe they are not really his at all because they just do not have his style and often disappoint.

His name sells, but he is also selling out and ripping off.

(not necessarily your) Uncle Skip, said...

I'm with Joe...
The two writers have set up franchises and there are others who actually write the stories.

There is a couple whose books I read, Jonathan Kellerman and Faye Kellerman.
I don't believe they've collaborated on any particular book.
They write separately ...and fairly prolifically.

The Broad said...

I, too, agree with the above comments. Very much like your photo -- makes me think Spring might actually come!

Jenny Woolf said...

I can understand writing a book like in "consequences" because that can be quite inspiring. But the other example... I don't know. Perhaps Tom Clancy took it down from the other one's dictation, and it sells because he's the one with the big name. I'm sure that kind of thing happens!