Saturday, October 6, 2007

Kevin Anderson & Rebecca Moesta's "Rough Draft": "Fear of failure" syndrome

This is a readable but very average motivational story about a kind of phobia - great success early on can sometimes make a person lose motivation for further ventures - for fear they would be compared with original one & found wanting.

sf touch is provided by a bit on parallel universes - something that often puts me off.

Download full story text here.

Story summary.
Mitchell Coren's first published work was an extremely successful novel called "Divergent Lines". Fear that any further works will be compared with it & found wanting makes him drop writing as a career.

Years later, he gets a parcel from one Jeremy Cardiff. Parcel contains a book - "Infernities" by Mitchell Coren, author of Divergent Lines! Of course, he had never written this book!

We learn later that Jeremy works for Alternitech, a company that has built a gateway to parallel universes! These guys hunts for works of famous artists in other universes - the works that were never published in this universe! No copyright owner has ever succeeded in stopping them from using his name.

Turns out, Jeremy is a great fan of Mitchell. On advise from his lawyer, Mitchell meets Jeremy to dissuade him. He succeeds, & gets the only other copy of "Infernities" from him. But he also gets a bug into his head - that will eventually make him return to fiction writing.

Fact sheet.
"Rough Draft", short story, review
First published: Analog, January 2005
Rating: B


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