Monday, April 16, 2007

A slight deviation from the norm

Note: I know that this is ostensibly about my running life, but the name of the blog is run GIRLIE run, so I reserve the right to write about issues affecting girlies, too.
Due to my work in publishing, I tend to get my hands on galleys or advance reading copies of books months, and sometimes a year or more before they're actually published.
About a year-and-a-half ago, while in the middle of a massive break-up, I laid my hands on a bound galley of a book called "The Feminine Mistake."
Something you need to know about me: I'm a reverse trend-spotter. I'll be offered free tickets to Hairspray the musical, or The Producers before they open or a free copy of Cooking with Fernet Branca and I'll say: Oh, I am SO happy that this piece of art has been made. Unfortunately, I have such weird taste that I'm the only one who will appreciate it, so I will not bother to take the tickets, as I will probably be able to access this art any time.
10 milliseconds pass, and the shows are sold out and Cooking with Fernet Branca (which I panned to my writing group) is longlisted for the Man Booker prize.
Something similar happened with The Feminine Mistake. I picked it up, related to it, read it, and then stuck it underneath the pile of half-finished science books that usually covers my coffee table.
Then, of course, it gets published and blows up into a phenomenon.
As one of the (seemingly) few people who has actually read this book, I feel that I can say authoritatively to Stay-at-Home-Moms: this book should not be your problem. I thought that it just provided information to the legions of single women who might undervalue their independence.
As for the title that so many take umbrage to: Hello! We live in an era of marketing. Wake up, controversy sells. If Leslie Bennetts gave her book a boring title, she wouldn't get the talk-show gigs.

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