If the Old Could

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9780394537573: If the Old Could

"I won't comment on the literary worthiness of Doris Lessing's novels, but when I heard the announcement of her Nobel Prize this morning I was reminded of the worthiness of a fantastic Doris Lessing stunt some years back (1984, to be precise.) To demonstrate the struggles that unknown writers face in the brand-name obsessed publishing Coliseum, Ms. Lessing submitted two novels for publication under the name of Jane Somers: "Diary of a Good Neighbor" and "If the Old Could..." Ms. Lessing was quoted in the New York Times as saying ''I wanted to highlight that whole dreadful process in book publishing that 'nothing succeeds like success.' If the books had come out in my name, they would have sold a lot of copies and reviewers would have said, 'Oh, Doris Lessing, how wonderful.'" But there were definitely not any how wonderfuls being uttered. Jonathan Cape, her longtime publisher in the U.K., turned the books down. They were published here by Knopf and in the U.K. by Michael Joseph under the pseudonym, and achieved instant remainder status, selling around 3,000 and 1,500 copies respectively. (Curiously, Amazon catalogs both "Diary of a Good Neighbor" by Jane Somers (sales rank 2,434,345) and "The Diaries of Jane Somers" by Doris Lessing (sales rank 23,323.) The clever Wikipedians have posted no Jane Somers entry yet.) ..." Adam Hanft, Political Columnist, CEO of Hanft Unlimited

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Jane Somers (Doris Lessing)
Published by Alfred A. Knopf (1984)
ISBN 10: 0394537572 ISBN 13: 9780394537573
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Book Description Alfred A. Knopf, 1984. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110394537572

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Somers, Jane & Doris Lessing
Published by Alfred A. Knopf, Bj-65 (1984)
ISBN 10: 0394537572 ISBN 13: 9780394537573
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Book Description Alfred A. Knopf, Bj-65, 1984. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. First american. Fast shipping with a tracking #. Ships from the US. International shipping may take longer due to customs. ; 8.50 X 5.80 X 1.20 inches; 249 pages; new Comes with a jacket cover ; Signed by Author. Bookseller Inventory # 505481

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Jane Somers, Doris Lessing
Published by Alfred A. Knopf (1984)
ISBN 10: 0394537572 ISBN 13: 9780394537573
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Ergodebooks
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Book Description Alfred A. Knopf, 1984. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0394537572

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