Bless Marilyn Marlowe

Posted by Ann Evans in Being a writer | 2 comments

A long time ago, while I was married to my first husband, Ernest Coates, I mixed up being married to a writer with being a writer myself. Ernest churned out thousands of pages of writing but never got around to submitting them anywhere, while I supported the family. Not a good plan, and for that and other reasons we divorced.

I was resentful of all the years spent typing his manuscripts, and thought to myself, “I can write a book.”  So I sat down and wrote one.

On the bus one day I met a friend who had just had a book about a disabled skier published, and her agent was Marilyn Marlowe, the Executive Vice President of Curtis Brown. She gave me Ms. Marlowe’s information and I sent off my book to her. That was in 1983.

Below is her response to me.  She read my book! Wow! She didn’t take me on as a client, but she thought I wrote “very well indeed, with unusual sensitivity.”  She thought the book was “good enough, however, that I do think you should get some other opinions.”

After that, I sent her everything I wrote, she read it, didn’t take me on, but gave me comments and encouragement.  By the time I had written something that was worth her attention, she had died, and I was so sad.

The funny thing about this is that Ms. Marlowe represented authors of children’s books. I don’t know why she bothered reading mine, but without her encouragement, my writing might have been a resentful flash in the pan.

I keep her letter in my drawer at all times, and every once in a while I take it out and look at it, and bless this person whom I never met. She continues to be a turning point in my life every time I look at her letter.

Screen Shot 2013-02-03 at 4.08.00 PM

 

Tags: , ,
Comments (2)
  1. Joli says:

    Very poignant, Ann. Do you think young writers have these kinds of relationships with agents today, in the age of email?

    • Ann Evans says:

      Yes, I do. I have had several warm and productive correspondences with agents, one of whom I met at a pitch slam at a writer’s conference. None of these, so far, has led to representation, but it has led to great improvement in my work, and until I do link up with an agent, this is very satisfying.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Life went on

Life went on again after Daring to Date Again: A Memoir ended, so I began this wide-ranging blog about life as a writer and as a woman in the early 21st century, especially as an older woman.

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Categories

Archives

Your-bookstore

book-reviews