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Another first

I mentioned in my last blog post about The spring of Kasper Meier by Ben Fergusson, that it was a multiple award winner. One of the more prestigious prizes that it won was the Betty Trask prize for a first novel. Fergusson is charmingly modest about his first novel. The book I read immediately after that was also (unknown to me at the time) a first novel, this time by the well known American novelist, Fannie Flagg (winner of an Oscar for the adaptation of her book, Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistlestop Cafe). Daisy Fay and the miracle man (first published as Coming attractions) was Fannie Flagg's first book.

In 1978 Flagg, who was then working primarily as an actress (she had a small role in Grease!), attended a writer's conference, and rather to her own surprise won a writing contest - a collection of journal entries in the hand of a fictional 11 year old girl, badly spelled to cover Flagg's own issues with spelling (she has a form of dyslexia). She was then approached …

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