Writers, the reason you can’t get published is all down to Remainers…

TRYING to get a book published is a wearying business, but it seems that those of us who struggle to find a deal have got it all wrong. We need to blame Remainers, which in my case involves blaming myself.

Thanks to the bumptious Tory MP Mark Francois for this useful insight into how publishing is a plot against brave Brexiteers such as himself.

In case you need educating, if that’s the word here, Francois is the small and belligerent, Brexit-loving MP for somewhere or other. I could look it up, but those wasted seconds don’t grow on trees.

He is known for his shortness and the tottering height of his right-wing opinions. Enter his name into Google, and one of the first options is a question about his height.

Hilariously, a celebrity height site (honestly, I am not making this up) says the following, which has been copied verbatim: “At 55 years old, Mark Francois height not available right now. We will update Mark Francois’s height soon as possible.”

Perhaps he is updating his own height as we speak by trying on different shoes or something. Happy to recommend the High Dudgeon Shoe Lifts I have just invented, designed to give a boost to small, shouty men everywhere. As a smallish, non-shouty man, I am happy to donate this invention to those whose ego needs a wedge.

Anyway, here is what Mark Francois has to say about publishing, as told to the Daily Telegraph, whose ear is always open to right-wing, Brexit-addled politicians with a very small axe to grind, or possibly a pair of nail scissors.

He has written a book about the ‘battle for Brexit’ and is having to self-publish as no publisher would touch it, apparently, as they’re all Remainers. These Remainers get everywhere, plotting against a hard-working small man whose height has yet to be made publicly available. And to those of you putting up your hands to say, “Ahem, perhaps it was a just another shit boring book”, well, yes.

The likes of Francois always want someone to blame; there’s a plot going on; someone’s got it in for them.

Francois told a Telegraph politics podcast: “In a nutshell, the problem was that the orthodoxy within the publishing industry is very, very much Remain. I got some nice compliments about the book and the writing, but it became fairly evident after a while that no publisher wanted to publish.”

And if the book was written as Francois speaks, those Remainer publishers may just have done us a favour.

Apparently, Francois’s agent touted the book “to a staggering 24 publishers who all refused”, according to the Daily Express website. I have always hated that usage of ‘staggering’, which is dropped into newspaper copy like a soggy firework that never goes off. But I’ll make an exception here: perhaps they were staggering after reading a few pages of Spartan Victory: The Inside Story of the Battle for Brexit. Or perhaps they were staggered after reading the title alone.

Being rejected is what happens to writers – good writers, poor writers and puffed-up politicians jumping up as they try to see over the wall.

My main deal was with an American publisher about ten years ago, for two York-based crime novels featuring the Rounder Brothers. They did all right; and then they faded away, which is what happens.

I have two novels on the go now, almost ready to be sent out. I am off to look for one of those Remainer publishers.

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