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'An aura of publishedness'

18 April 2005

'Being an unpublished author is a bit like being an asylum seeker. You know this is where you belong - your Promised Land - but the gate is guarded. You're desperate to get in, but you don't know the rules. You try everything - different fonts, different noms de plume. You take out all the adverbs, then put them all back in again. You spend ours refining your synopsis. You know it must be possible, because you see the Published Ones walking around on the other side of the frontier, bathed in an aura of publishedness...'

Marina Lewycka, whose first novel is A Short History of Tractors, in the Observer