I am delighted to announce that I have written my first novel - just like Naomi Campbell once did, and Proust - and will be publishing it myself thanks to the miracle of digital print technology. It is called Vicki Cochrane's Astral Chronicle and has been crafted so as to defy any categorisation whatsoever.
It has not been, nor shall it ever be, submitted or sold on to a mainstream publisher. It was written specifically to be free at birth from the pollution of editorial opinion. While most writers are doomed either to rejection or submission to the fascism of some know-all post-grad swot (who aspires to literary fame him- or herself), I happily veer to the future and how things shall be one day.
It astonishes me how potent still is the glamour of commercial publishing to writers of fiction, as if a freely hatched chicken would choose to live in a battery, behind its bars. How sad.
Far better to synchronise with technology's liberating applications and produce a book that matches or exceeds the production values of orthodox publishers. Readers can decide whether it was worth reading.
Book reviewers, of course, still deprecate self-published work, unless it's by some retired military autobiographer or specialist in steam engines. How happily the critics graze through the fields of publishing catalogues, chewing the cud of PR precis, before the noxious exhalation of a (usually) compromised opinion. Ripple-like, they respond on cue to the latest sensational, hyped plop. Later, the editors flog their review copies to bookshops for spare cash.
Meanwhile, 20-something shop managers with three GCSEs and a diploma in marketing science decide whether to sell a particular book and where to place it - can the publisher afford a window seat? Category? Price? Cut? Fuck off!
Vicki Cochrane's Astral Chronicle will be available on this site a bit later this year in all formats - hardback, soft, audio and electronic. I shall write more about the book - which maybe loosely described as satirical - another time.