More than a century before Fifty Shades of Grey, an Otago lawyer proved a self-published novel could become a global phenomenon.
BY CRAIG SISTERSON
Never sell your copyright!” There are many things we can learn from the fascinating tale of Fergus Hume, but for author and “literary archaeologist” Lucy Sussex, that lesson clangs loudest. Hume studied law at the University of Otago, but desperately wanted to be a playwright. Moving to Melbourne in 1885, he decided to write a novel as a calling card for theatre directors, a stepping stone to a career in writing for the stage. It proved a momentous decision, not just for him, but for the literary history of a country and the development of a popular genre. “Hume consulted booksellers, ... [contd]
Published in the 27 June 2015 issue of the New Zealand Listener (available this past week). Listener subscribers can read the full article online here, or you can purchase a digital version of the issue here.