What the Living Hell is THIS???
This, my friends, is what I’m up to nowadays:
Yes, I’m back in the saddle, as it were.
This photo before you are my current projects. They are (in no particular order, or… um, odor?)
–A Mark Mallen short story. My first short story for Mallen. I have high hopes for it, but, um… I might be high. 😉
–The screenplay to Untold Damage (STILL can’t get used to the fact that my book has an official title and pub date! 040813. Memorize it, lol!)
–The next book in the Mark Mallen series (title as yet unknown, ha!)
Yeah… it’s a lot. Especially given what last month shoved my way. However, the work is the salvation, as they say.
I’m excited about ALL of these projects, thankfully. That’s not always the case, naturally.
Am I worried, or bothered, about any of them? Do any of them… give me pause? Well, if any of them seem daunting, then I would say that, probably naturally, it’s the next Mallen book. The first one won’t be out until April of next year, but I have to turn in THIS guy ahead of that. I think this is pretty normal in the publishing world, though maybe not. But yeah… that sorta scares me, a little.
Second books are a whole topic in themselves, of course. I, since I wrote scripts for so long, tend to think of them like movie sequels. You know… how does The Empire Strikes Back build on and improve what was Star Wars? Why does Aliens work the way it does? Is it because of Alien, or in spite of it?
Regarding books, how does an author build and expand on what he set down in book one, but still keep the fans of that book happy? Readers (of series books especially) have expectations. We all do. I know I do. When I sit down to read an 87th Precinct novel, you know damn sure I have expectations. But, Ed McBain, aka Evan Hunter, managed to keep it fresh and keep us happy. And for a really long, f’n time, too. How do you think he did it? How do you think any novelist can pull off a successful sequel?
I am VERY much enjoying taking Mallen and putting him in a short story that takes place at another point in his life. It’s a helluva lot of fun! It’s almost like writing the history of Mallen! I’m hoping this short pleases people, for sure. It’s an early draft, but I think there’s something in all that dung that will eventually shine, after copious drafts, natch.
The screenplay is something that I’m really crossing fingers will come into play at some point. The jury’s out on that, however it was a total BLAST to write that first draft, man. Writing the first screenplay I’ve written in like seven years really brought back to me all the joy I used to have writing movies. I really urge EVERY writer to attempt at least ONE screenplay. An adaption of your recent novel. An adaption of your “pet project” (You know you have one. We ALL do). Even a completely NEW idea. Whatever it is, write it as a movie. It really takes you out of your head and shows you story and pacing and character and dialog in an ENTIRELY new way. A way that will REALLY, REALLY HELP YOU as a novelist.
Trust me on that one.
See you soon!
Oh, um…. yeah. That thing I keep dropping hints about? Unfortunately, I was told it will be soon(ish) before I can share it with you. And YES, it’s for real, this is not me trying to hook my readers. It’ll pay off, I assure you.
Trust me. 🙂