Rutherfurd on Rutherfurd


Turned Down

Q. Yet despite that success, your publishers didn't want your next book. They turned your new proposal down.

A. They didn't absolutely refuse to publish, but they were so negative that it was useless to proceed.

Q. Why was that?

A. Publishers are very good at knowing what sold before - and that's highly valuable information. So they want more of the same - and that's usually good business. The movie business is similar. When large owner corporations put relentless demands upon editors, it makes them even more timid and you can't blame them. But in my opinion, an editor needs to think like an automobile manufacturer. Keep improving your existing models and redesign them from time to time. Anyway, in this case I proposed a book that was similar, but also somewhat different to what had gone before, and they were horrified. They wanted no change in treatment at all, and they hated the subject.

Q. Can you tell me the subject?

A. I'd prefer not, because I still hope one day in the future to write the book. I think it's quite an ingenious tale.

Did You Know?
Hard to believe, but this month of April is the 50th anniversary of the 'official' break-up of the Beatles. This author was a very timid young student at Cambridge then. But the far more worldly and talented guy who had the room across the corridor from me had a lovely girlfriend who worked for John Lennon; and one day they scooped me up and took me to Lennon's house at Ascot. The white house with the white piano. Lennon himself wasn't there, but all the same . . . Fifty years later, that day is still so vivid




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