Tallis Steelyard presents a guide for writers. Inculcating a sense of urgency

Tallis Steelyard

1) A sense of urgency

Elene Spindleshaft is probably one of the finest and most poetic romantic novelists I have ever read. She could take two pages to describe the way the sunlight fell upon her heroine’s hair. Her delicate mastery of words could reduce poets to tears. The problem is that whilst she had an assured command of her genre, who reads poetic romance nowadays? Even more worrying who buys it? Even her erotic passages were so poetic that I’ve seen them read out to audiences who barely stopped gossiping to listen!
Elene faced a dilemma. Had she merely written romance, she would doubtless have earned a steady income. But of course she would have been forced to project herself as the lady her heroines were based on. Forty years before she could probably have done that but after a tough life and several children, she no longer boasted the lissom figure or waist-length…

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