Over the years, and on several occasions, I've mentioned how in 1971 when I was 23-years-old I wrote an early draft of the novel Middle Passage that I set aside because I considered it to be unsuccessful. That naturally raises the question, why did I feel it failed? Allow me to use today's E-Channel post to provide a full reply to that question.
But you have to remember, in 1971, I'd been seriously writing fiction for just a year. This was the period (1970-72) when I trained myself to produce 10 pages of fiction a day, five days a week, and completed the draft for a novel every 10 weeks (or every academic quarter), which resulted in six novels finished by the fall of 1972 when I began the seventh one, Faith and the Good Thing, with writer John Gardner looking over my shoulder.