It's a fantasy, alright! Two 21-year-old gals who met online in a discussion about the fantasy genre have authored a 400-page novel together ("Online collaboration lands young authors book deal," by Murray Langdon, http://www.globeandmail.com/, June 26, 2008). Right across the U.S. border, no visas or passports required. Danielle Bennett, from Victoria, B.C., and Jaida Jones from New York have written a novel called Havemercy that features flying metal dragons, magicians, and warring rivals. Their methodology was to write seven pages or so and email it to the other who picked up the thread. They finished the novel in an incredible 18 days. With the time difference, one author could sleep while the other wrote. And guess what? After multiple rejections from other publishers, Havemercy enchanted an editor at Random House. She fell in with the book and the way they wrote it. It is being released as I write this blog. Fantastic!
I think the publisher could have done a little better than an advance of $30,000 split between the two of them (they have to write a sequel by the beginning of August!), but apparently a book deal has been landed with a Russian distributor and foreign translations lie ahead. So the collaborators should do very well financially in the future.
Collaborative novels (a greatly expanded form of the letter writing of past centuries -- think of all the great people whose back-and-forth letters have been saved and published as collections many years later) have definitely entered our world of literary innovation. Meanwhile blogs have become so commonplace a means of communication that journalists from major newspapers are flocking to join the diverse world of bloggery. L.A. Times columnist Patrick Goldstein writes, "It's a world of change, and I'm going to blog with it (Los Angeles Times, June 24, 2008, E1)." Like most of us, he confesses he has a lot to learn as he becomes a blogger (www.latimes.com/thebigpicture), but, to be on the safe side, he'll keep his newspaper column going too.
As a fellow blogger, welcome to you, Patrick! Wanna collaborate on the big picture? LOL, Corinne