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Old 08-06-2019, 09:44 AM   #46
leebase
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I must confess I pretty much stopped reading Clancy books with Rainbow Six. The famous name/co-author thing has been around for a long, long time. Dumas was famous for using ghost writers/collaborators. Sometimes it can be well done and seamless, other times not so much. Baen does it a lot. It can be a useful tool for introducing a writer to an audience and helping a writer learn the craft.
I figure the author is taking responsibility for the quality of the work. So far, I haven’t been disappointed.
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Old 08-06-2019, 10:34 AM   #47
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I think it matters whether the B-N Authors name is on the book just for marketing or did they mold the work.

l-n author? may have a story idea, but not the craft to run with it. We all win this way.
I get to read a good, well done work. L-n gets the story told (and maybe some $), B-N has their name out front again (as well as making their Publisher $ )
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Old 08-06-2019, 01:26 PM   #48
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That is why I am afraid to touch any Patterson book. I can already see my confusion in deciding who to follow next. More of true Patterson books, more of the same "Patterson/co-author" combo or other books by the particular co-author that are not branded Patterson. Are Patterson books usually seamless or is each author distinguishable from the others?
That's always the question. I tend to break it out into several categories

Writing team - two writers who write together and are co-equals. An example would be Jerry Pournell and Larry Niven. Both very good and well known writers on the own who have written some very good books together.

Mentor team - one big name writer who is mentoring a younger or lesser known writer. Some of the early Drake/Stirling General and Pournelle/Stirling books might be an example, though Stirling had a few books before that. I think that helped Stirling smooth out some of his rough edges and understanding what appeals to readers (though it was pretty easy to see what parts Stirling wrote in the Pournelle/Stirling books).

Name team - big author slaps his name on it, while lesser known author does most of the writing, i.e. ghost writer.

Universe writer - Second author writes in the universe of the first author maybe from an outline, maybe just on his one. Examples might be some of the newer Bond books, the last three of the Robert Jordan series, John Ringo's Monster Hunter books.

The last two are the ones I'm most cautious about. I've read some very good books in these categories (I thought Sanderson's three books were better than the last three books that Jordan actually wrote and really liked Ringo's Monster Hunter books) and some very bad books in these categories.
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Old 08-06-2019, 01:38 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by pwalker8 View Post
That's always the question. I tend to break it out into several categories

Writing team - two writers who write together and are co-equals. An example would be Jerry Pournell and Larry Niven. Both very good and well known writers on the own who have written some very good books together.

Mentor team - one big name writer who is mentoring a younger or lesser known writer. Some of the early Drake/Stirling General and Pournelle/Stirling books might be an example, though Stirling had a few books before that. I think that helped Stirling smooth out some of his rough edges and understanding what appeals to readers (though it was pretty easy to see what parts Stirling wrote in the Pournelle/Stirling books).

Name team - big author slaps his name on it, while lesser known author does most of the writing, i.e. ghost writer.

Universe writer - Second author writes in the universe of the first author maybe from an outline, maybe just on his one. Examples might be some of the newer Bond books, the last three of the Robert Jordan series, John Ringo's Monster Hunter books.

The last two are the ones I'm most cautious about. I've read some very good books in these categories (I thought Sanderson's three books were better than the last three books that Jordan actually wrote and really liked Ringo's Monster Hunter books) and some very bad books in these categories.
Another Universe Series would be the 1632 Universe. Eric flint wrote the first book and has allowed other authors to write in his universe.
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Old 08-06-2019, 03:03 PM   #50
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That's always the question. I tend to break it out into several categories
Another category which is slightly different is house name, where there never was an original author with the given name, it was just an umbrella for different commissioned authors to indicate a shared style and universe. Seems common in the pulp/adventure genre.
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Old 08-07-2019, 08:09 AM   #51
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Another category which is slightly different is house name, where there never was an original author with the given name, it was just an umbrella for different commissioned authors to indicate a shared style and universe. Seems common in the pulp/adventure genre.
True enough, though it was also common is pulp/detective stories. Ellery Queen is an example.
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Old 08-07-2019, 08:17 AM   #52
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Another Universe Series would be the 1632 Universe. Eric flint wrote the first book and has allowed other authors to write in his universe.
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Yep, that is one example that I was thinking of where the results were a bit spotty. Some of the results have been quite good, others less good. One of the problems is that this particular universe shared a common story arc, so it could be a bit difficult to figure out what books where part of the main story arc and which were just stories set in the universe. I lost track/interest in that series a long time ago. I really liked the first 3 or 4 books though.
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