While Glenn Beck's name appears on the cover of the remarkably awful upcoming novel, The Overton Window, the title page lists "contributions from" Kevin Balfe, Emily Bestler, and Jack Henderson. According to a profile of Beck in today's USA Today, these "contributions" include writing the actual book [emphasis added]:
Which is why he takes a team approach to writing his own books, including his first political thriller, The Overton Window (Threshold, $25), on sale Tuesday.
On the title page, Beck shares credit with three contributors. He calls the conspiracy novel "my story," but he says Jack Henderson, one of his contributors, "went in and he put the words down."
Others novelists might not acknowledge such help, but Beck, a self-described "fiscal conservative and common-sense libertarian," says, "I'm a team kind of guy."
Later in the profile, Beck explains that there was "no way" he was going to sit down and actually write The Overton Window. What a silly concept, writing the book with your name on it:
As for his team approach to writing, Beck says, "There's clearly no way that I'm sitting behind a typewriter or word program and pounding this out. ... I have my vision and need someone to make sure that vision stays there."
Balfe offers this explanation: "Glenn has a three-hour radio show every morning. That's obviously 100% Glenn. But if you wanted to translate that into a book, you could take those transcripts. But then, someone has to go in and make it sound good to read in that format. And that's the way I describe the writing. It's all Glenn, but you've got to have the right thriller technique," which is where the contributors come in.
With romantic scenes involving lines like "don't tease the panther," it's understandable that nobody appears to want the credit for writing The Overton Window.
The profile also indicates a sequel may be in the works:
Beck calls his 321-page novel "half the book I wrote. They didn't think an 800-page book, which would have become a 1,200-page book, would be flying off the shelves. So this is only the first half."
Considering that not much actually happens in The Overton Window, a sequel might make sense.