View Full Version : Need help!
June 2nd, 2006, 01:52 AM
Hi my name is John, I hope that I am posting this in the right place.
I have been asked by the family of the late author Betty MacDonald (The Egg and I, and the Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle series) to write Betty's biography. I am very good with research, and they assume that because I am so adapt at research then I should be the one to write the book. I do agree that there would be a huge sales in a book on Betty MacDonald not only here but, in Europe where her books are still hugely popular even after 60 years. Betty's daughter, who is continuing her mothers Mrs Piggle Wiggle series, has intorduced me to her literay agenct who os also impressed with my research an would kike to see me write the book.
Now, what I am looking for is someone who can help me write the book. Like I said I am good with research but, writing is not my strong suite. Can any one give me some ideas or, maybe want to co-author a book?
June 6th, 2006, 07:00 PM
Talk to Ann Elizabeth to find out if her mom kept a diary, plus any special memories she had and any friend of their mother who may still be alive. Only Betty's sister Alison is still alive, see if you can talk to her as well. Check to see if Betty's brother and other sisters left any diaries. You'll also want to ask Joan's family, see if they remember any stories.
Read The Egg and I, Onions in the Stew and especially The Plague and I to get a feel for the author.
Visit the places she lived at. Get a feel for them. Look at family pictures.
How did she feel when she sold a milllion copies of her first book? How did she feel about the movie? Did she like it? How did she feel about losing her sister Sylvia?
Immerse yourself in Betty McDonald. Let it all soak in. Then you can start telling us who Betty McDonald was with your first rough draft.
June 6th, 2006, 07:30 PM
Thank you for your response. I have read all four of Betty's books, and I have spoken with her daughter Ann, sadly Joan passed away. It was Ann that encouraged me to write her mother's biography and intorduced me to her literary agent. There isn't too much I do not have on Betty (everything from her birth certificate, to her deathe certificate and everything humanly possible in between.), my biggest problem is trying to express all of this into words. I know what I want to say but when I go to type it is dosen't come out the same. If that makes any sense.
Ann, and many of betty's family members have been very helpful in my endevors.
June 6th, 2006, 07:40 PM
It makes complete sense :)
Try not to worry about how it looks right now. What's important is to get it all out on paper, a rough draft. Once you have that, you can then start editing and reworking all the stuff that doesn't seem right.
Sometimes the simplest words are the best.
June 7th, 2006, 02:03 AM
so true, and I do agree
June 7th, 2006, 01:14 PM
You need a collaborator, is what you're saying, and the best sort for this project would possibly be a children's non-fiction author, a number of whom do biographies. The daughter's literary agent may know such an author or even represent one, which would be ideal. If not, then you may want to try getting in touch with the Society of Children's Book Writers & Illustrators, the major professional group for children's writers and seeing if among their members is a likely candidate. Web searches couldn't hurt as well.
Does the book already have a publisher interested or are they planning to market it through the daughter's agent?
June 7th, 2006, 02:21 PM
we are looking at the possibility of Harper Collins picking it up, that is the publisher who owns the rights to Betty's books, and who is publishing Ann's "Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle" next year.
yes I am looking for a collaborator, I have checked with the Society of Children's Book Writers & Illustrators, but everyone has other contractual obligations and those who don't do not do collaborations . So, I guess I am going to have to do this all on my own:( . Oh well it is like Expendable said, "Try not to worry about how it looks right now. What's important is to get it all out on paper, a rough draft. Once you have that, you can then start editing and reworking all the stuff that doesn't seem right.
Sometimes the simplest words are the best.
June 7th, 2006, 02:30 PM
Depending on your budget (if there is a budget), you may want to post this on http://www.guru.com/. Its a job board for freelancers, including writers.
I've picked up a couple of freelance jobs there (tech writing), and I've seen similar situations.
June 7th, 2006, 09:46 PM
You might also want to check out The Authors Guild and the National Writers Union. And I also know of a person who might be able to help you or lead you to someone who can. I'll PM you.
June 24th, 2006, 11:23 PM
I, too, have thought about writing a biography about Betty McDonald and would love to help. I've been a professional writer for many years. If you are still looking for a collaborator, please let me know.
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