Friday, October 31, 2008

Ready, Set, Go!

Well, I finally finished the revisions on SUCKER PUNCH, and the book has gone into production, so now it's time to ask myself what's next. My other professional obligations are finally a thing of the past, which means I'll have a lot more time to write than I've had in the past two years. This is a really good thing, and I feel almost giddy with excitement when I contemplate all the time I'll have to devote to writing and research. My term officially ends at midnight tonight, and I feel like a runner standing on the starting block, waiting for the starter's pistol to go off. Endless possibilities and (finally!) enough energy to pursue them have me feeling like a kid before Christmas. Turning in SUCKER PUNCH completes my current contract with my publisher, so I'm crossing fingers that we'll go to contract on another book or two in the series. These are the first books I've ever written for which I've needed to know the title before I can write. I've heard of authors who work this way, but I've never been one of them -- until now. Both CANDY APPLE DEAD and GOODY GOODY GUNSHOTS popped into my head without much effort at all. CHOCOLATE DIPPED DEATH and PEPPERMINT TWISTED were both suggested by my publisher, and it took me for-flippin'-ever to come up with SUCKER PUNCH. So far, I've had no bursts of creative genius on a title for the prospective #6, but I guess that should be my first step. I've also been mulling over a few ideas for a possible second mystery series, but I don't have anything concrete yet. That's okay. Now that I know the phone won't ring and interrupt me mid-thought with some crisis that needs to be solved, and now that I have no valid reason to check my e-mail 100 times a day, I should be able to concentrate. At least, that's what I'm telling myself! I'll ... uh ... keep you posted.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

The Last Lecture

The Last Lecture The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch

My review

rating: 3 of 5 stars I really wanted to be bowled over by this book. I knew other people had been, and I knew other people would be. All the way through it, I tried to let it grab me in some way, but it never did. Don't get me wrong. My heart aches for this man and his family. It aches for his children, especially, because my own kids lost their dad a few years ago, and I know how deeply such a loss can affect children. But the book just didn't do what it felt designed to do. Maybe I'd feel differently if I'd seen the video or watched Pausch talking about his life, his death, and his family. But I haven't. I've only read the book, which felt dry and lifeless and, frankly, manipulative. All the way through, I felt like someone was trying to manipulate my emotions, and I did what I always do when I feel someone trying to manipulate me. I shut down. I backed off. I put up fences. I resisted. The concept is intriguing, the reality is heartbreaking, but the book was merely all right. I wouldn't tell anyone it was a "must read." I'd suggest you try the video on YouTube instead. View all my reviews.