Depression is a Bastard: How Scott Lynch Faced His Demons and Became a Bestseller

Andy Cowley:

Great piece

Originally posted on Relentless Reading:

“I realized that as of this moment I had to be totally honest, or I would be dancing around this question for the rest of my natural life.”

Scott Lynch (third from left) at Tucson Festival of Books. With Beth Cato, Brian Keene and Jeff Marriotte (L-R). Scott Lynch (third from left) at the Tucson Festival of Books. With Beth Cato, Brian Keene and Jeff Mariotte (L-R).

Scott Lynch is an inspiration. In 2006 he was the hot young voice in fantasy, riding high on the success of his novel The Lies of Locke Lamora. Its sequel, Red Seas Under Red Skies seemed to fulfill the promise of the series, about a pair of thieves known as the “Gentlemen Bastards.” But death, divorce and depression derailed his career.

But Lynch didn’t hide his problems — since 2010 he has been forthright with his readers, sharing the harrowing experiences that nearly destroyed his career, and as a result he has become an ambassador for victims of depression. And his…

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Would You Read This?

I’m nearly there I think, with my manuscript almost ready to pitch to agents. I’m just polishing the turds and flogging the dead horses. I’ve also been working on a synopsis and a query pitch. After about thirty iterations, I’ve boiled it down to the blurb below. Would you read this novel?

Rorick of Iverley, braggart, heretic and master thief, has been offered a job too good to be true — complete a series of simple cons for an elusive noble in the shivering wastes of the south. It sounds pretty bloody miserable actually, but then he’ll be paid enough money to retire and escape the dangerous life he leads. You see, Rorick is Gifted, able to manipulate the world around him through Song. However, those Gifted folk without noble blood are hunted down by the Choir of Justice and dealt with fatally.

He soon finds himself burdened with an elderly priest, a mute boy, and a beautiful but homicidal smuggler. Painful memories, long buried, are unearthed as he inadvertently helps rekindle an ancient family feud that will trample over the lives of everyone in the Twin Cities.

A prudent thief would drop this job like a hot rock. A prudent thief would run away, as far and as fast as possible. A prudent thief, Rorick is not.



I am stuck.

Need a big piece of paper and some crayons. I think I can work it out then. Sadly, being at work, that’s not an option right now.

Ho hum, I await my train journey with anxious excitement.

[Review] Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer

Annihilation (Southern Reach Trilogy, #1)Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The mystery and fear of Lovecraft meets the excitement and scientific discovery of Arthur C. Clarke’s Rendezvous with Rama.

It sounds a strange thing to say, especially given the nationality of the author, but the novel is very American. The blind acceptance of arming everyone to go on a scientific mission I guess is a little jarring for a Brit. It’s not a criticism by any means, just an interesting discussion point on the point that arming civilians is de rigeur in fiction.

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[Review] The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss

The Name of the Wind (The Kingkiller Chronicle, #1)The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Absolutely sublime writing. One of my favourite books of all time now. The characters are handled with such care and attention, I felt myself in some severe anxiety at points for their safety.

The world is beautifully realised, and yet almost fades into the background as it becomes so comfortable and familiar, giving you more time to spend with these complex and nuanced people.

I was dragged through the book, almost without noticing, thus is the skill of Mr. Rothfuss. Bought the sequel today…

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What happens when you sit an infinite number of gibbons behind an infinite number of typewriters? Who knows, but one is bad enough. My toil with writing fiction from scratch…


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