Former Arcatiste Susan Hill (famed novelist, publisher, playwright, opinionist spewer of words) now writes a blog for The Spectator, the magazine that's hosting an Aids-denialist movie screening on Oct 28 - and my thanks to the loyal, all-weather Arcastiste who brought the blog to my attention. I did say elsewhere that I would not bother to read it, but being a double Gemini I succumbed to curiosity and had a look. Oh dear.
Susan's latest post is a nattery onslaught on ghost written celebrity novels such as those by Katie Price (aka Jordan). In Mail-style fulminant mode she writes of these books: "To pretend to pen a novel, to appear and sign the book for long queues of people and never to acknowledge the ‘real’ author, is simple deceit and the many people who buy a novel believing that it really was written by Jordan or Katie Price, are being cynically manipulated."
I don't think so, dearie. If Susan did her homework, instead of wallowing in upper middleclass oblivion of lower-order cultural realities - a condition encouraged by the infantile, belle epoque mindset of the Spectator - she would know it's no secret that Katie is not the author of the novels that bear her name. As Katie herself said in a Mail interview - among others! - last year to push Angel Uncovered: "I'm not going to sit here and say I write it word by word because I'd be lying. I actually say how I want the story and that's how it happens." Her non-authorship is a truth universally acknowledged. Her books are brand-stamped productions and promoted as such.
I bet Susan a modest £50 - to be donated to an Aids charity - that she will not find one Katie Price fan chosen at random who imagines Katie has written any of her books. Susan would do better to get back to writing a properly earthed indie blog and not try to pander to the delusional and out-of-touch soaks of the Spectator readership.
On other matters, I've always been fascinated by spiders ...