Actor To Writer: Will It Really Work?

Tuesday 30 September 2014

I’m generally not a fan of actors who decide to pitch publishing companies for a publishing contract, using their fame to get a leg up in an industry where ‘ordinary’, ‘regular’, ‘normal’, ‘not famous’ people bust their hump to get a look in. I’m also dark on actors who decide to get into music by using their film or TV status to get ahead. It’s a personal opinion I have, and I could rant on about it all day, but that’s not really the point of this post.

In fairness, I do like to get my hot lil hands on each new literary release by David Walliams, and he’s a comedian. Technically, I guess it’s also fair to categorise him as an actor as well. After all, he has had quite a few roles in TV shows and movies, excluding the Little Britain, Rock Files, and Come Fly With Me sketch-based comedy shows he created with Matt Lucas. And yes, Walliams’ books are targeted at kids, but they are a good read, especially if you quite enjoy his sense of humour.

So, what leads me to write about this topic today? I’ve just discovered that one of my favourite actors, Gillian Anderson (of The X Files and The Fall and heaps-of-other-TV-shows-and-movies fame), has embarked upon a writing career. Her debut effort, A Vision Of Fire: Book One Of The Earthend Saga, is a co-creation with New York Times bestselling author, Jeff Rovin. It’s being marketed as a science fiction thriller of epic proportions, and apparently, it’s a gripping and well-written thriller according to a reviewer or two. And I’ve pre-ordered it on iTunes. *Insert sigh here, along with a slap on the forehead* Well, I’ve got to check it out before I make a rash generalisation about actors becoming writers, haven’t I?

I’m not sure what I really expect from this novel. Obviously there’s going to be a level of expertise in the writing because Anderson has co-authored the book. With that in mind, I’m interested to know exactly how much of the book she actually wrote – just for my own curiosity, that is. I wonder, if I sent her a copy of the novel, do you think she’d go through and highlight her work? Again, just my curiosity at work. Oh, my curiosity would also like to know if the publishing company approached Gillian to write a book, or did she call up a pal in publishing and hit ‘em up for a writing gig. I know, I know: curiosity killed the cat. Good thing I’m not a cat . . .

Now, Gillian Anderson might just be a real literary talent. Anything is possible. She does have a certain grounding in paranormal thrillers due to her role as F.B.I. Special Agent Dana Scully in The X Files, and I always thought she did a cracker of a job as that character. I think she does a cracker of a job with every acting role I’ve seen her in. Yep, bit of a fan. That, however, does not mean that I’ll instantly be a fan of her writing. And seeing as though I’m not really into science fiction novels, I don’t have a predisposition to liking the work. That’s a bit of a weird thing, now that I think of it: I quite like science fiction TV shows, and the odd sci-fi flick, but I really haven’t even got into science fiction literary works. Give me a good crime novel or thriller any day.

So, I sort of eagerly await October 9 when A Vision Of Fire arrives on my iPad. I’m sure I’ll let you know if it’s any good. And I’ll definitely let you know if it’s cr@p.

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About Danielle

I like to write. What more is there to know?
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