Why Dolly Parton’s book with James Patterson was written the old fashioned way

Dolly Parton has revealed why she wrote her first novel, Run, Rose, Run, on paper instead of a computer

Why Dolly Parton’s book with James Patterson was written longhand
(Image credit: Getty)

Dolly Parton has revealed the old-fashioned way she wrote her first novel with James Patterson—and we can't help but adore her all the more for it. 

The American country singer released her debut book on Monday, 7 March, much to the delight of her loyal fanbase. 

Co-written by bestselling author, James Patterson, and inspired by Dolly’s own experiences in the music industry, 'Run, Rose, Run' tells the thrilling story of a young woman determined to escape abuse and ‘make it’ as a singer-songwriter in Nashville. The novel graced the No. 1 spot on the Amazon bestseller list before it was even published, and has already received rave reviews online. (On that note, if you're looking for a good page-turner to start your spring reading, check out our list of the best books 2022). 

Dolly has also released an accompaniment album of the same name, which consists of 12 songs based on the characters of the book. 


James Patterson and Dolly Parton have teamed up to release 'Run, Rose, Run' 

(Image credit: Getty)

Dolly’s obviously no stranger to writing, having reportedly penned over 3,000 songs throughout her incredible career in entertainment. The 76-year-old is the mastermind behind the bulk of her most iconic tunes, including the 1980 bop ‘9 -5’ and the 1973 hit ‘Jolene’, and has even written material for the likes of Whitney Houston and Elvis Presley. She’s also won countless accolades for her lyrical genius, including 11 Grammy awards and 13 Academy of Country Music awards. 

With most authors typing their work these days, it might come as a surprise to learn that Dolly hasn't updated her writing tool in over seven decades. Speaking to the BBC this week, she admitted that she prefers to use a pen because it's easier to read than font on a screen. 

Dolly Parton

(Image credit: Getty)

"I still write longhand," she said. "I've got these big legal yellow pads and I just write, just scribble it out with my Sharpie pen so I can read it now." This echoes her previous statements from 2016, in which she shared with her Facebook followers that she can't be creative on a laptop or computer. 

"I can't think unless I've got a pen or a pencil in my hand, with a big old yellow legal pad," she said. "I think my writing is as good as it ever was." 

Emma Dooney
Lifestyle News Writer

Hailing from the lovely city of Dublin, Emma mainly covers the Royal Family and the entertainment world, as well as the occasional health and wellness feature. Always up for a good conversation, she has a passion for interviewing everyone from A-list celebrities to the local GP - or just about anyone who will chat to her, really.

Emma holds an MA in International Journalism from City, University of London, and a BA in English Literature from Trinity College Dublin.