Richard Laymon is such an anomaly in so many ways. Over 20 books to his name, he's a bestseller in england, but lives in america, is from chicago, and rarely gets published in the us (though leisure is now reprinting some of his stuff in a very random way). so he does seem the perfect candidate to write a book on the highs and lows of being a writer -- he enjoys both success and obscurity AT THE SAME TIME.
I really enjoyed this book. It's about 1/3 pep-talk/how-to on writing fiction; 1/3 look at all of laymon's bibliography, reasons behind certian choices, kind of a 'director's commentary' on the books; 1/3 autobiography.
The problem is, its audience seems such a tiny select group, that I can't really recommend it to many (that's why the three stars -- thoroughly well-done but so unappealing to so many). I mean, I'm a horror fiction fan who loves Laymon's stuff and one day aspires to write something, so i dug it, but how many others out there really fit that bill?
still, an interesting point-by-point discussion of getting published, the politics of publishing, and the like.
if you like laymon, or want to become a writer, go ahead and pick this book up. laymon's 'aw shucks' but still slightly egotistical manner of writing have such an endearing quality you'll feel like you're ready to run out and pump out your first novel after reading this.