Wednesday, 14 May 2008

On Being a Nosy Writer

I was on the train home tonight and, after standing for part of the journey, finally got a seat at a table. The woman opposite me had a big pile of papers and a pen in front of her and, being the nosy cow I am, I glanced at them.

OOoh, I thought as I spotted double spacing, the formatting and a title*, surname** and page number in the top right hand corner, it's a novel manuscript!

I glanced at the woman. Was she an agent, an editor or a writer?

If she's an agent or an editor, I thought, trying to assess her age, maybe I'll get a little sneaky peek into the way they work.

Well she looked too young to be an agent or an editor (mid twenties tops) so I figured she was either an agent's assistant, an editor's assistant or a writer reading through her draft on the train home from work.

I'll know as soon as she starts making marks on the manuscript, I thought and pretended to read my magazine.

A couple of minutes later I snuck a peak at her from over the top of my copy of Grazia.

She was fast asleep!

And she slept all the way back to Brighton, only moving to gather up the manuscript as the train pulled into the station.

Foiled!

* The title didn't give anything away
** Or the surname

6 comments:

A. Writer said...

How annoying! You should have given her a little kick under the table to wake her-using the train's movement as an excuse of course! ;)

B said...

Oh how frustrating! I would have tried to start up a conversation myself to see if I could wangle the info out of her (and probably would've failed miserably...!), but if she fell asleep so quickly maybe it just wasn't meant to be.

Google her name in a year's time, see if you find anything out then? In the meantime, keep an eye out for her.

HelenMH said...

How intriguing!

Fiona said...

You'll have to make sure you have an obviously writerly notebook - or your own m/s - on you at all times so you have a reason to start up a conversation.

KAREN said...

Ooh, how annoying! You should have sneaked a peek while she was asleep. Mind you, if she'd opened her eyes you'd have had some explaining to do!

Lucy Diamond said...

Very intriguing! Have you Googled the name on the manuscript?