The Ottumwa Courier

January 5, 2013

No longer reading books by ghost writers


ELDON — “Oh boy,” I exclaimed on my last trip to the library to pick up some holiday reading, a new novel by Tom Clancy.


Another book with a famous author’s name in huge type, but the actual writer’s name in small type at the bottom of the cover.

I wonder how long its been since Tom Clancy, James Patterson, Bill O’Reilly, Stephen King and it seems like almost countless others, have actually sat down at their typewriter or word processing program and actually written a novel all on their own?

So many of these popular writers seem to have tired of the labor of actually producing a novel, and now they just pitch the outline and the publisher hires a writer to actually write the book. He gets his name, in small print, on the cover, and a share of the profits, which, considering the large type name on the cover, will be significant.

I for one no longer read these novels purportedly by the big time authors. If there’s a name on the cover other than the writer I have always admired, I give it a pass.

Hey, big-time writers: Your name became an instant best seller because you were producing terrific books! Now you seem content to rest on your laurels and gull the public into paying for a cover with your name, but none of your actual creative juice on the pages inside.

Stop it. Your fans don't like or appreciate it.

Don Howard