don't like crime-novel cover copy that brags that the author is a lawyer for the same reason that I don't like covers that identify the author as So-and-so, Ph.D
. Such braggart branding plays on the intellectual insecurity of readers. It's a not so subtle effort to bully shoppers into thinking that the author must be smarter than they are, so they will either improve themselves by buying the book or else get a dirty little insider's glimpse at a world they would never know without the author's help.
Me, I don't give a crap what authors are or what degrees they have; I want to know what they can do.
I was thinking about this while reading the following this evening on the back cover of a trade paperback edition of Easy Money
by Jens Lapidus when something else caught my attention:
"From one of Sweden's most successful defense lawyer(sic) comes an unflinching look at Stockholm's underworld."
Someone's not paying to have cover copy proofread carefully.
And note the o with a slash in the cover's rendering of the book's title. Jens Lapidus is Swedish, and he wrote the book in Swedish. Ø is a letter in Danish, Norwegian, and Faroese — but not Swedish.
n recognition of professional reality, I have taken a number of the posts I'd previously classified as "Things that drive me nuts" and reindexed them under the heading "Who needs copy editors?
" Read them and weep. Just don't expect to be paid for your tears.
© Peter Rozovsky 2013
Labels: Jens Lapidus, Nordic crime fiction, publishing, Scandinavian crime fiction, Sweden crime fiction, things that drive me nuts, Who needs copy editors?