I often hear about authors’ critique groups. Some authors hire beta readers. Some rely on random readers and some have a trusted circle. Ian McEwan falls into the latter group. His first readers are poet Craig Raine, historian Timothy Garton Ash and philosopher Galen Strawson.
Ian McEwan, it turns out, has a triumvirate of friends whom he entrusts with his novels before anyone else, with the poet Craig Raine scolding him whenever his writing becomes too formulaic (the pair will mark FLF, “flickering log fire”, in the margins of each other’s work whenever it falls into cliche). McEwan won’t even let his friend and fellow novelist Martin Amis near his books before completion, preferring to trust it to Raine, Oxford historian Timothy Garton Ash and philosopher Galen Strawson.
The Guardian via ShelfAwareness.