Crime fiction and literary punishment

Finishing “The Paris Review Interviews, Volume II” this week got me thinking about the separation—chasm really—that grew between literary and pop fiction in the middle of the last century. The thoughts bubbled up, in fact, after reading the interview with the late Philip Larkin, giant of 20th Century poetry. Larkin was asked what he read. […]

Music of the Times (and the spheres)

Most days, it’s pretty easy to guess what the New York Times will lead on. That’s because most days, it’s the Democrats yelling at the Republicans yelling at the Democrats… Well, you get the point. And if it’s not that, it’s the obvious big economic report of the day or the obvious major unrest in […]

‘…book paper catches fire, and burns’

I failed to do my job that night. Didn’t even try. I was supposed to be chasing scraps of gossip and bits of deal news that HBO executives might dole out to a neophyte reporter from a C-list trade publication. That was not my excuse for not trying. No, mine was three amazing hours spent […]

Cutting 20,000 words, the easy way

Here’s an observation on revising a manuscript. I finished a rewrite last week of my crime novel, cutting 20,000 words in the course of a two month front-to-back revision. This was so I could hand the draft—it’s either the fifth, or maybe the seventh; I’ve lost track—off to my agent Dawn Dowdle for her edit. […]

Bad blogger! Bad!

I have not been a good blogger. Here’s my fiction update. Writing is like erosion. It takes a really long time before it looks like you’ve made any progress. Two weeks ago, I finished a second-draft on the first third of my work-in-progress so I could set that aside and do the fifth (or is […]

I’m a writer. I am

Pretentious and preposterous. That’s how this line reads: I’m meeting my agent. It’s not so much name dropping, as noun dropping.  Like, did I mention my sports-car repairman stopped by? Hold on, the art dealer is calling. Oh, and I’m meeting my literary agent this afternoon. But I am. I’m going to spend this whole […]

Timers, the blurb

Below is the pitch for my work-in-progress, a YA science fiction adventure that Dawn Dowdle of Blue Ridge Literary Agency has just agreed to represent. In January, she signed to handle my historical mystery LAST WORDS. TIMERS: Samuel Tripp’s Adventures Across Time with Rip Van Winkle, the Connecticut Yankee and Ebenezer Scrooge (oh, and he […]