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Author Archive: "Courtney Maum"

In Praise of Rejections: Why I’m Glad It Took Me 10 Years to Publish This Darn Book

When I see my name in print next to the phrase "debut novel," I can't help but picture my hardcover yanking at an ill-fitting cotillion dress that keeps falling off its shoulder. The descriptor seems off somehow — it's right, but not quite that. I Am Having So Much Fun Here Without You is my first novel, but I wrote it 10 years ago, in 2003, and in 2013, I completely rewrote it again. In this 10-year span, there have been other works of writing — bound manuscripts too sprawling to deserve any other moniker than "mess," short story collections, unwieldy essays — but none of them ever showed as much promise as my first book, which, instead of "debut novel," I like to think of as "born again."

When I first wrote I Am Having So Much Fun Here Without You, I was 24 and living in Paris, and I hadn't been writing for some time. Mired in a bad relationship with a Frenchman who had a penchant for drama (he once launched all of my belongings out of our fifth-story apartment, and when he remembered I ...

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