The big news in the publishing industry is that E.L. James, author of the best-selling Fifty Shades series of softcore porn books, will release Shades of Grey: Inner Goddess, a how-to book for writers, on May 1.
Although the contents of the book are still a secret, we here at The Saturday Morning Post have managed to get a sneak preview of a few sections of what promises to be an invaluable tool for people who have always wanted to write novels, but have never read one.
Never mind that James’s books have been panned by critics and writers alike as amateurish prose, and that the idea of someone who is essentially a fan fiction scribbler advising others on writing is an insult to the writing community. Writing, as the good folks at her publisher, Vintage, know, has nothing to do with years of study and work dedicated to producing works of depth and meaning—it’s about whatever we think will sell!
Here, according to our sources, is an excerpt from the book’s foreword:
Professional writing is easy, easy, easy! All you ned need is a computer and a few packs of gum. Sit down in front of the copmuter computer (don’t forget to turn it on!) and pop a stick or two into your mouth. Start chewing to get that brain working and right write away!
Oh, and it heps helps to be able to type!
And here’s a glimpse from the Glossary of Writing Terms:
Character: The people in your story. The more deviant the better!
Plot: I’ve heard this term, but I don’t really know what it means. You shouldn’t worry about it.
Foreshadowing: Something to get the reader ready for what’s coming next. Like when the character notices a jar of lubricant on the nightstand. (Thanks to that famous writer, Mr. Checkoff Chekkov Chekhov, for this one. I think he acted on the old Star Trek series too.)
Climax: Do I really need to explain this? Just know that there should be a lot of them in the book!
Resolution: Cleaning up after the climax.
And finally, from the Notes and Whatnot section:
Include a bunch of black blank pages at the end to make the book look bigger. You can tell the reader it’s so they can jot down notes for their own book, even though a real writer would already have some paper in the house… and a pen too!
There’s more, but the SMP staff doesn’t want to spoil the hours of fun wanna-be writers will have reading and learning from this important volume. And next week, for serious writers, we’ll have some tips on how to deal with depression and feelings of insignificance over the publishing industry’s devaluation of well-written novels.