Monday, April 5, 2010

the trials of fresh publication

The fact is that when she was at her peak, she was so prolific that she had a publishing backlog, and a lot of work got left behind. Once she had moved on, in theme and genre, she lost interest in the older manuscripts. But she carefully preserved the work, arranged for it to be lodged in archives, and she always had a literary executor named and primed to deal with it. She frequently mentioned that she had a generous store of unpublished work. She did draw up several tables of contents toward a collection of the new stories. We don’t know for sure why she never got around to publishing that volume, but I think there were multiple reasons. She didn’t relish her fame, and once she had enough money to live on from the reprints and translations of the twenty or so books she did publish, she seemed to have decided not to expose herself to any more of the trials of fresh publication, even though she never stopped writing.

Pamela Gordon interviews Janet Frame's literary executor at the New Yorker's Book Bench

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