"This vivid trawl through a career misspent in New Grub Street offers hilariously candid anecdotes about (ever-present) failure and (far rarer) success in the writing profession...Berkmann's book is an affectionate and uproarious ode to an existence lived precariously by the pen." —Guardian
Marcus Berkmann has been a freelance writer since 1988, working for newspapers and magazines and occasionally writing a book, like this one. He reckons to have written literally millions of words in that time, several of them in the right order. This, his 13th or possibly 14th book, is about those years of writing: the triumphs (few), the heartbreaks (many), the sackings (more than you would expect), the biscuits (many, many more than you would expect). In it he somehow makes the act of staring out of a window wondering what to say next seem both fascinating and, in some strange way, enviable, whereas, like most writers, he rarely leaves the house other than to go to the pub or the off-licence. Often asked how you become a writer, his advice remains: Please do not. There's already enough competition out there and we don't need any more. His advance for this book was about enough to buy a packet of Jaffa Cakes.