*Not really, your favourite author is probably still somewhere
As a voracious reader, I have a LOT of authors to keep track of! Lots of authors with new books ever year, or even two a year, or in Isabelle Broom’s case three in 18 months which makes me squeal with excitement. However, what happens when your favourite author just vanishes? For example: Where has Suzanne Collins gone? Has she retired with her millions, since The Hunger Games was just so epically loved?
WHAT HAPPENED TO SARAH MASON? Now a lot of you will have no idea who Sarah Mason is. Sarah Mason is the author of such gems like Playing James – which is, by far, one of the funniest books I have ever read, The Party Season and High Society. I loved them all. She also wrote one called Sea Fever, but it was based around sailing so I didn’t read that one, and after that? She just vanished! And it’s the same story for a lot of Chick Lit authors – Liz Young is another. Her books are amazing, but she hasn’t had a new release for yonks. It seems like Chick Lit books are hit and miss – either you’re universally loved like Sophie Kinsella, and can write tons of books, or you publish one or two, less than five, and then you’re never heard from again. Perhaps Liz and Sarah are writing under pseudonyms, as that is the fashion, too.
I understand why publishers use pseudonyms, but I also kind of don’t, because if Sarah Mason or Liz Young are still writing books, I WANT TO KNOW. I want to be able to buy them, to devour them. Of all the books I’ve read, here are all the authors I’ve loved who have gone MIA: Liz Young, Sarah Mason, Deborah Wright, Kirsty Greenwood (which makes me sob, I AM EAGERLY AWAITING A NEW BOOK FROM KIRSTY GIMME GIMME GIMME!!!!), Sarah Webb, Sasha Wagstaff (although she became Ella Harper, but in a different genre!), Gemma Townley (Sophie Kinsella’s SISTER!!!!), Bernadette Strachan (who became Juliet Ashton), Allie Spencer, Robyn Sisman, Priscille Sibley (one and done – although that one was AMAZING), Nicky Schmidt (her first two books were just RIDICULOUSLY good), Annie Sanders (a writing duo who are no more), Melanie Rose (where did she go? her magical books were so fantastic), Lucy Robinson (hasn’t technically gone MIA, has become Rosie Walsh, new genre but I weep for the Lucy books!), Carmen Reid (where did she go?), Kerry Reichs (Kathy Reichs’ daughter), Hazel Osmond, Clodagh Murphy, Elizabeth Noble, Susy Mcphee, Gil McNeil, Marisa Mackle, Lucy Lord, Allie Larkin (I LOVE her books), Christina Jones (one of my earlier favourite authors), Belinda Jones (this hurts me the most – her books literally took me to the destinations she was writing about, how can she not be publishing books still???), Molly Hopkins (I loved her first book, but then she kinda ruined it with the *ridiculous* sequel), Donna Hay (another fantastic author, now writes historical fiction), Jemma Forte… The list is, apparently, endless.
There are more up there than I even thought! I am horrified! Where have all these fantastic authors gone? Obviously I know the answer – publishing is a numbers game, so if you don’t sell books, you don’t get a new book contract (which also makes me sad, because some authors just need that breakout book, the way Me Before You absolutely transformed Jojo Moyes) but in a world where self-publishing is all the rage, why don’t all these authors self-publish. I will always read authors who I love whether they’re traditionally published or self-published. Ruth Saberton does it, at terrifying speeds, and I still LOVE her books so much!
It’s honestly devastating to me as a reader. When you read a book and love it so much, and find out the author doesn’t have any new books for you to read. It must be hard for them, too, obviously, but I’ll always champion them. If all those authors above brought out a new book today I would go buy them all right away (and apologise to my bank balance). Here’s hoping they’re still writing away, some way, some how. Because that amount of talent is sad to be wasted, to not be read by readers.