Author’s Wives – Silently In The Shadows

Aren’t These Guys Married?

So many millions of authors, some men, some married. Simple math, right? I just assumed that there had to be some wives out there but they’re hard to locate or talk to.

I’m an author’s wife. I hear that Stephen King has a wife. A data technology author that I know has a wife. It’s not like it’s our identity but being married to an author impacts us in ways that other people don’t experience. Some authors:

  • are temperamental
  • highly intelligent
  • creative
  • just got lucky with a publisher once or twice or are Best Sellers
  • spend a lot of time alone
  • neglect their wife
  • forgot they had one
  • have one personality when writing, a different one once the book is finished
  • drink too much
  • have weird dreams
  • keep weird hours
  • tell very weird stories
  • are in their own world
  • are wanna-be authors
  • are fun & quirky
  • are talented
  • work with their wives

I Googled “Author’s Wives”

  • Nothing of significance there.
  • I Tweeted things about Author’s Wives; nothing
  • I started an Author’s Wives list on Twitter. Zero.
  • I asked married authors about their wives. They said stuff like, “She said she’ll get involved when I write my next book” or “she helps out with the bookkeeping.”
  • I went to GoDaddy to see if was available. It was!

What Happens to You If He Makes it Big

It depends on the guy, of course but think about this. Look at Marilyn Stephano. Her late husband was the screenwriter for Psycho. He’s not around to interview so who did they call? That’s right; the Mrs.

Let’s say that’s you or me, another few years down the road, assuming our author/husband makes it big. What are we gonna say, “Gosh, I don’t know what he was doing in there. I just brought him his lunch” or “he was a pain in the butt to live with” or “I loved being married to a writer. We collaborated on a lot of his works.”

What if you did things like Tabitha King did, by rescuing an early draft of the novel, Carrie, that Stephen threw into the trash after becoming discouraged with his progress? Isn’t that worth mentioning? My author/husband thinks so. He’s the first guy to give me credit. He says he would not be where he is today without me. He has written over 20 books and has dedicated nearly all of them to me. It’s an honor but on the other hand, I earned it. I made sure the house was quiet so he could write. I brought coffee. I read manuscripts and made suggestions. I took photos for his books. I helped build his author platform. I became his Business Manager and Publicist. His success was a team effort but not everybody does it this way.

What Role Do You Play?

I’m older. I don’t have little children running around drawing crayon murals on the living room walls or painting with the contents of their diapers (true story, I won’t say which kid did it). Laundry alone would seriously inhibit my ability to participate in my husband’s writing career. How would I feel about it if I was still raising little ones while he was locked away writing for hours at a time? Would I resent it or would I see it as our “distribution of labor”?

You’re reading this either because you’re an author’s wife, or you know one, or you wish you had one. How does it work for you, or not work? Let me know. I realize that not all couples can or even want to work together but the payoff has been huge for us. I wish more couples would do it.

I Have Proof That Helping Your Author Helps

Doing What The Writer Doesn’t Have Time To Do

If you visit the Peter H. Gregory Wikipedia bio page, you will find a list of publications and corresponding dates. We started working together in 2005. Here are the numbers:

  • 7 books prior to 2005
  • 25+ books after 2005

There’s a long list of things authors are encouraged to do in order to build their platform, build their tribe, promote their books….whatever you want to call it. I haven’t met a single author who has told me they found plenty of time to do this. This is where the partner/wife can come in.

It’s true that there’s not much glory in it but by helping Peter increase his productivity, it increased his writing income, I mean our writing income, and who doesn’t want that?!

Posted on October 15, 2013, in Blog and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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