SOPHOMORE SLUMP (06/24/2012)


I recently received an email from Helen Olsen of the Online Education Database. She enclosed an article about The Sophomore Slump for authors. In other words, the second novel fails to live up to the first. 
The following well known authors did just the opposite. Their second novels far exceeded their first.

SALMAN RUSHDIE'S first novel GRIMUS was a complete flop. His second novel, MIDNIGHT'S CHILDREN, a work of historical fiction earned the Booker Prize.

F. SCOTT FITZGERALD became famous for his first novel, THIS SIDE of PARADISE but his second novel, THE BEAUTIFUL and the DAMNED, based on his life was the more successful.

AUDREY NIFFENEGGER wrote THE TIME TRAVELER'S WIFE in 2003 and six years later wrote HER FEARFUL SYMMETRY, a literary success.

To read the entire article go to:


  1. This is a really interesting observation. Another example could be John Grisham. His first novel, A Time To Kill, had very poor initial sales. It was his second novel, The Firm, that shot him to fame and, incidentally, allowed for a reprint of his first.


  2. Thank you for your comment.. I was not aware of that...It's an interesting phenomenon..but not an unusual one judging by the authors mentioned in the article.
    Lots of pressure being an author!!