Pony up

I have just realised I may have been horrifically naive in my earlier statements about Heather Mills's stated intention to write children's books. I was thinking that she meant write in the sense of write, but perhaps she was thinking more along the lines of Katie Price (Jordan) and her Perfect Ponies book.

I was reminded of this by a link over at Bookninja that takes you to a Times Online article about the recent nomination of Price's best-selling book for the WH Smith Children's Book of the Year prize and the ensuing disbelief:

According to her publishers, Price, one of the most commercially successful writers in the country, is a “brand” and it is impossible to quantify how much of the book she wrote.

The Society of Authors has been inundated with complaints from concerned members. Tracy Chevalier, author of Girl with a Pearl Earring, who chairs the organisation, said: “I’m shocked. I’m amazed the publishers even put the book up. If it’s ghost-written then it’s inappropriate that it should be shortlisted. I am disappointed by the judges.”

Joanne Harris, who wrote Chocolat and is now writing for children, said that it would be “depressing beyond anything” if Price wins on April 9. “If this is an award for people who write books then it should be open only to people who write books, not to somebody who lends their name to a book, or who would have written a book if they had time but didn’t.”

I don't think all this is exactly what Dorothy Parker had in mind when she said that she "hated writing; loved having written."


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