The Arithmetic of Fame

  • SHARES

By Kathryn Comment

blackhole.jpg

To the reader who wrote, in response to my last post, “Actually, Koren Zailckas, the author of Smashed, is 24 years old (almost 25). Do your research!”: Ask any fame-obsessed young writer and he’ll tell you, the mid-20s are crucial years. Publish a novel in your early 20s and you’re a phenom, shining bright; publish a novel in your late 20s, and you’re simply a writer, another black hole on the media landscape. But, unfortunately, publishing — much like coal mines, or cancer — skims years off your life. By the time you’re 23, you’re 25 in book-years — which most likely puts Koren’s age, counting backwards from her book-age to when she first met her agent, between 21 and 23.

Or, to introduce Research to this blog, here’s the PM deal blurb, from January 27, 2003:

22-year-old Koren Zalickas’ memoir SMASHED, detailing seven years of alcohol abuse and an investigative look at the phenomenon of binge drinking among young women, to Molly Stern at Viking, in a pre-empt, by Erin Hosier at the Gernert Company.

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