Sunday, January 16, 2011

'About the Author'

As an occasional book reviewer, Apprentice Writer once participated in a survey that asked, among many other things, whether she read the author information page' never', 'sometimes', 'most of the time', or 'always'.

She wished there had been another category: 'before anything else'.

AW adores the author information section. She believes it gives a tiny but true taste of the author's personality and creativity. If the book is supposed to be funny, for example, but she sees no reflection of that in the author blurb, she develops strong doubts as to the veracity of humor content.

Here some entertaining examples.
Dia Reeves, YA author: "I was born. I did some stuff. I haven't died yet. What do you want from me?" (@ Goodreads)

Gail Carriger, light paranormal author:
"Ms. Carriger began writing in order to cope with being raised in obscurity by an expatriate Brit and an incurable curmudgeon. She escaped small town life and inadvertently acquired several degrees in Higher Learning. Ms. Carriger then traveled the historic cities of Europe, subsisting entirely on biscuits secreted in her handbag..." (@ Goodreads)

Anna Dean, historical mystery author: "....her interests include...cream teas and canoeing on very flat water." (back cover)

Diana Holquist, contemporary romance author: "
I love to write. That’s pretty much all I do. Ask my family about the undone laundry, the un-bought groceries, and the fact that I rarely find time to get dressed in the morning. Actually, if you train your family right, they won’t notice any of these things..." (@ Goodreads)

Laura Kinsale, historical romance author: "
...become a romance writer after six years as a geologist--a career which consisted of getting out of bed in the middle of the night and driving hundreds of miles alone across west Texas to sit drilling rigs, wear a hard hat, and attempt to boss around oil-covered males considerably larger than herself. This, she decided, was pushing her luck. So she gave all that up to sit in a chair and stare into space for long periods of time, attempting to figure out What-Happens-Next." (@ Goodreads)

Jill Mansell, contemporary fiction author: "
....writes full time. Actually that’s not true; she watches TV, eats fruit gums, admires the rugby players training in the sports field behind her house, and spends hours on the internet marvelling at how many other writers have blogs. Only when she’s completely run out of displacement activities does she write." (@ Goodreads)

Janet Mullany, historical & paranormal author: "
Janet Mullany was raised in England by half of an amateur string quartet..." (back cover)

Jasper Fforde, alternate reality author: "
Jasper the son of...the 24th Chief Cashier for the Bank of England, whose signature used to appear on sterling banknotes..." (@ Goodreads)

It goes, perhaps, without saying that AW was not disappointed in the entertainment value of these authors' works after the high expectations raised by their self-descriptive snippets.

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