Tuesday, September 24, 2013


I got a chance to think about my writing while I was in Albany this past weekend for Bouchercon. In the past year or two, I've put some energy into preparing some works for Kindle. That's hard for me. I'm not tech savvy, have had to learn how to code the files properly and then edit, make covers as best I could, etc. Then what? No one buys the books unless they stumble upon them by accident.

So I've given a lot of thought the past year or so to leaving the writing business. It's not that hard to do. I have no contracts that need fulfilling, no legion of fans clamoring for my next novel. Of course, I'd continue writing. It would be the business side of things I'd leave behind. But without the prospect of a possible payday, I'd restrict myself to short stories, maybe the occasional novella. Maybe I'd send them out to magazines, maybe I'd put them up as Kindle files, maybe I wouldn't. I'd be the guy who used to write.

But that's not what I want for myself. Not usually anyway. I have to admit, sometimes it's tempting. But I don't actually have the Quitter gene in me. Any halfway decent lasagna platter I've come across can testify to that.

So I took inventory of the things I've been working on the past year or so. A novella, 18,000 words. Completed in May. just trying to find a lull for minor editing and Kindle-izing.

Two novels: one at about 89,000 words out of a projected 90,000. Obviously too close to completion to scrap, and I actually like it so far. Rereading might ruin that good will. The other is at 63,000 out of a projected 80,000. Also quite close.  I'll certainly see those through to the end.

A half dozen short stories left at the halfway mark including a comedy called "Morty Birnbaum Joins the KKK." A couple of novels (including a Lucy Cruz and a Precinct Puerto Rico) at about 6,000 out of 60,000. I started those only a few weeks ago.

Another novel is started (five chapters in) where most of the action takes place in an English manor during a (currently illegal) fox hunt.

And plenty of other projects in various stages of completion.

Over the next few days and weeks I'll bring more details about these along with things I'm reading.


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