It is a huge deal to write something and get it published but for some, it is a deal that comes with a curse. In this article, we are going to read about 6 times when famous authors hated their own book. Let me tell you these are not books that did not sell well or receive recognition, these are good books and some of them are considered classics of certain genres. There could be a lot of reasons involved – the realization that they could have done better, the way the audience perceives it after getting published which hits the author in a way it does not before publishing, and more.
6 Times When Famous Authors Hated Their Own Book:
In journal and personal correspondences, Kafka expressed disdain for several of his works which also includes one of his popular works Metamorphosis. Even according to the New York Times, Kafka destroyed about 90% of his work with the help of fire during his lifetime. Even on his deathbed, he requested Max Brod, his best friend to burn the unread writings. But he did not fulfil his wish and posthumously published a collection of his unpublished novels two months after his death.
In the year 1977, Stephen King published Rage under the pen name of Richard Bachman. The story of Rage is about a high school student who went to school with a gun and holds his classmates and teacher captive. After some copies came in front of a school shooting from 1988-97 Stephen King started isolating himself from the novel and tried to take it out of print entirely.
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Doyle is popular for creating the legendary character of the detective genre Sherlock Holmes. Would you be surprised if I tell you that he did not always have the same admiration and adoration towards this character? He considered himself as a historical novelist so after creating the series and writing which he thought was enough he wanted to put an end to writing crime fiction and how was he going to do that? By killing the character of Sherlock Holmes.
After years of creating and writing James Bond Fleming thought of writing something new and shifts to a new project and The Spy of Loved Me is the product of that project. The story is presented from the female heroine’s point of view. The experiment did not mold into the result Fleming expected. After publishing, it received quite a negative review from critics and readers and he wanted to make the books disappear. But the text got reprinted by his family after his demise.
The works of Kurt Vonnegut are taught highly in colleges and schools but he was not proud of his novels. In Palm Sunday, a collection of his essays, he degraded some of his published works. Most of his works earned an average grade other than Slaughterhouse-Five which received an A+ and Slapstick and Happy Birthday, Wanda June both received a D grade.
Burgess was reportedly distressed and frustrated that all of his reputation and fame became connected only to A Clockwork Orange, about which he said that he ‘knocked off for money in three weeks.