A highly successful writer once told me, “I don’t start writing a story until I know the last sentence of the story.” It worked for her. I have never ever been able to do that. Well, not quite never: The one time I did was for the fourth book in the Crispin series. Except, while I had that last line, I never wrote the book.
A couple of days after 2020 Christmas I sent in two novel manuscripts to two different editors. No, this is not the result of being ambidextrous and working on two keyboards simultaneously. It comes about because of the complex ways of publishing. Let’s consider each book in turn.
The pandemic has touched everyone in 2020, and that includes writers and publishing. In my own writing life, I have been touched, influenced, and hampered in almost all the ways cited.
Every year around Christmas time— “this rolling time of the year”—I re-read Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. Part of this comes about because the reading has become my tradition, and traditions, I think, help measure one’s life. I also read it because I feel it’s a lesson to me, a lesson I should heed
I’m often asked about the research I do for my historical-fiction novels. That is determined, first, by the nature of the book I am writing. If I am trying to set a story within the context of real events, real people, in real places, that requires rather deep research. If I am only using a
I once read that the occupational disease of writers is depression. It’s not difficult to know why. Shall I suggest some reasons? The sheer all-but-impossibility of writing a perfect piece of work. The isolation. Low (if any) income. (The trend these days is ever lower,) Negative response to one’s work, which these days includes dismissive