I just read “An Age of Innocence” by Edith Wharton for the third time and discovered that it is listed as a romance. Daniel Day-Lewis is the protagonist. What? A romance from a man’s viewpoint!
I wrote an unpublished romance from a man’s viewpoint: THE PIANO PLAYER. First I wrote it as a short story, then a novel, then a screenplay with the keen eye of Trai Cartwright—screenwriting instructor at my side, then again as an improved novel, and finally as a novella. I believe in this novel: it is plot heavy, character heavy, full of subplots, surprises, and redemptions. I have shopped it around for years, this orphan that is so bountiful. I take it out from the drawer, from time to time, and shop it around. It may be fated like Jane Austen’s novels. Did you know that Janie shopped her works around for 17 years before “Pride and Prejudice” was finally published!!!
In today’s commercial book market, Austen’s romances would be shunned. She did not write hardboiled sweaty passionate sex scenes demanded by the romance market today. She wrote elegantly and with much wit (as did Edith Wharton), without resorting to “steamy” scenes. Ironically, Jane Austen's synopses would be rejected today by the arcane “literary” world” just as they were in her day.
I may publish it under Piper Press, as I did my other novels. But wouldn't it be grand if one of the Big Five publishing houses would undertake it?
So, you ask me, what is the status of your writing today?
1. I’m shopping a collection of short stories titled, AFTER TWENTY YEARS (a teaser, four stories, and a novella). They all reflect the title theme.
2. I’ve re-opened the drawer housing THE PIANO PLAYER, for another airing and am shopping it as a novella in an almost invisible market calling for novellas. Hoohah!
3. I am happy to say that my six published novels are continuing to sell at a brisk rate “to the older and wiser gal” (as Robert Preston sang it in “The Music Man”).
4. I just read in the Wall Street Journal, in the “Mansions” section, about a house previously listed in 2016 at $175 million. It’s on the market again with a drop of $55 million. Whew! The article said of the house, “It has been empty for nearly 30 years.” That line grabbed me. I am excited about playing with it as A WORK IN PROGRESS.
Happy July, everyone. Our daughter was born in July. The happiest month of my life.
My Mother, of THE PROVIDER fame, said of our daughter, “You only have one but you got a good one.” True. True. True. Happy Birthday, Hillary.
By the way, here's another romantic novel/film from a male point of view: