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Brief Candle (1996)
How does a novel come to life? is a tired question that people do still ask - as if authors aren't continually banging on about the creative process. So we're going to tell you.
First came a poem [The Dreaming City by A.L. Marshall], which RLC authors proceeded to plunder in search of titles. Out of that predation came two longish short stories on the same gloomy theme with the generic title In Nightmare Slumber Locked.
In the first story, by Robert Dorning, there is a mad author living in a library in a city de-populated by a world-wide plague and filling his days with the mammoth task of changing the title page and spine of every book in the library to read: Brief Candle by Frank Arion
Soon, people began to ask Mr. Arion when he was going to write this magnum opus. He responded by insisting that the person responsible for the title should write the book to go with it. And out of the speculation as to what might fit the title came a work of collaboration which, to the authors' joint amusement, was voted Self-help Volume of the Year by the European Federation of Small Businesses [in 1997].
So what's it all about? Hey, why not buy the book and read it and find out? You can check out what the critics had to say while taking a look at the jacket.