Republic Of Writers

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Writers are known to live in their own worlds, so giving them a country of their own seems a modest enough proposal. Indeed, as they have created so many worlds for the benefit of others, it is the least society can do to repay them. The location of this Republic will require consideration. A corner of Belize would be ideal, that country permitting, but other venues may be proposed.

As for the laws and mores that will govern such a Republic, I will have to group-source that project; the concept is too large for one writer’s brain. But here, in no particular order, are a few opening suggestions:

1. Official currency: ChocolateChocolate

2. Time-honored tradition: Upon finishing final edits, writers send every writer they know a box of said currency.

3. Safety: Crossing guards at all intersections for writers lost in thought or reading as they walk. (Foreign crossing guards, naturally. Natives would be useless.)

4. Border patrol: Literary agents.

5. Firing squads: Critics.

6. Gun laws: Imaginary weapons only, but no limit on those.

7. Sustenance: A chicken in every plot.

Your proposals, please.


Delighted to inform you all that A DANGEROUS FICTION is now out in Penguin paperback: perfect for book clubs, if you belong to one–I’ll even skype-bomb the discussion if I can. You can read the opening here.

About Barbara Rogan

I am the author of nine novels, including A DANGEROUS FICTION, published by Viking and Penguin. I'm also a former editor and literary agent. Currently I teach fiction writing on my online school,
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26 Responses to Republic Of Writers

  1. Jo Murphey says:

    I love #1 there must be chocolate. Lots and lots of chocolate!A corner of Belize love it. I’m in.

  2. S.P.Bowers says:

    I’m in! My hubby who happens to be an engineer would probably have some issues though. Hmmm, maybe he could just visit.

  3. Add wine to the currency list and I’m in! 😀

    • The engineer spouse could run lines for the chocolate taps and so earn his keep. But there’s so much more we need! National bird, flower, and tree; national holidays; laws and penal system…It’s not just hanging curtains!

  4. An intereting proposition, Barbara. But does this place not already exist in the imagination of all writers? It certainly is a country I visit regularly in my dreams.

  5. deniz says:

    Fascinating! How do we design our homes? Can we create whatever we like? Will there be lessons – say I want to learn archery and sword fighting?
    I certainly hope all the food and clothing is organic 🙂
    The library must be endless! Can we have our favourite authors come give talks? Like, oh, I don’t know, Mr Neil Gaiman, perhaps?
    And do we host a Banish Self Doubt Festival every time one of us is feeling low?

    • Love the idea of lessons. We’d have to bring in all sorts of experts on temporary visas, as needed. All houses will be idiosyncratically designed but all must have plenty of bookshelves—we’ll put that in the building code.

  6. Ella Quinn says:

    We must have cafes with wireless and wine. Some with music and some without. Grand views. I think I’m in. I’ll volunteer my husband for protection against foreign invasion.

  7. Becky Morgan says:

    There must be pizza, and might the fountain in the center of Endlessly Interestingville be rigged with diet peach Snapple?

  8. Zan Marie says:

    Hmmm…Chocolate curency would be in danger of “disappearing.” ; )
    What do you suggest for those, heaven forbid, who are allergic to chocolate?
    (I had to ask since I live with one of those unfortunates.)

  9. Lara Lacombe says:

    Don’t forget pets. I need my cats, but I hear other people like to write with their dogs… [g]

  10. Jen Donohue says:

    Belize sounds nice, I think. I would also accept one of those nice little islands off the coast of Africa. Blue skies, crystal waters, sandy beaches. Perhaps nice little white painted cabins?

    I agree with the above commenter that pets are necessary. Don’t worry, my dog will not purloin any of the chocolate.

    • Pets definitely allowed. The only thing worrying me is that all the writers who’ve replied so far are women. We need male writers too, to propogate the next generation of writers, AND to do their hard-boiled detective or horror thingy.

  11. Jen Donohue says:

    Hey, don’t impost your gender roles on my hard boiled horror 😉

    I can see your point, though. Some testosterone is necessary. Maybe cabana boys?

  12. Jen Donohue says:

    Hey, all work and no play, right? 😉

    Aw, thanks so much for visiting! I’ve been getting back into the writing blog; dog blogging is so much “easier”! Using Dragon to transcribe must be great, as it gives you a concrete sense of the way everything sounds.

  13. This sounds wonderful… although as a child I lived in Belize for a year and it might be a little too hot/humid for me year round. I’ll come during the cooler months 😉 And I will not say no to chocolate–ever!

  14. Jan Moran says:

    And coffee running hot and icy from every tap, please!

  15. David Dinner says:

    Capital idea, Barbara. I can’t dispel the fear, though, that after all the work of setting it up and creating an idyllic society, we would be “annexed” by the United States and our Queen thrown in jail.

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