Rules from Steve Hely's "How I Became a Famous Novelist"

This has to be No. 1 in some weird category of Books I Like But Have Not Read. I’ve mentioned it before: Steve Hely’s satiric/comic novel, How I Became a Famous Novelist, which came out this summer, and it sounds funny. Here are two of the rules that touch on issues I’ve written about recently:
“Rule #1: Abandon Truth: People will believe thousands of different lies in succession rather than confront a single scintilla of truth. People like love that crosses the years, funny workplaces, goofy dads who save Christmas, laser battles, whiny hags who marry charming Italians, and stylish detectives. But try telling somebody a single true thing about human experience and they’ll turn on the TV or adjust their Netflix queue while you starve to death in the rain.
“Rule #4: Must Include a Murder: Not including a murder is like insisting on playing tennis with a wooden racket. Noble perhaps in some stubborn way, but why handicap yourself?”
I recently blogged about That Murder Problem. As convenient as the murder plotline is for novels/storytelling, how much of life are we avoiding to follow that old killer song and dance? While promoting my novel Goodnight, Texas I got some laughs at a bookseller event (an industry thing where you meet and greet with bookstore owners/buyers) when I confessed that there was no murder in my book, “But maybe I should have killed someone?” I asked. This followed a dozen novelists who described their books as about 1) a recently divorced Manhattan D.A. 2) who stumbles on a plot to assassinate the president, while investigating the murder of a call girl linked to her ex-husband, 3) who has joint custody of their mutt, a scruffy beagle/dachsund/airedale mix who is the most lovable perp-biter since McGruff the Crime Dog—who has a blog, by the way:

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