New York Times  Bestselling Author

Archive for October 2008

Creating a Story

I’m working on the synopsis for a new book, so I thought I’d share the process with you. I hope this is especially helpful to you newbie writers, as well as of interest to readers who’d like a peek behind the scenes. First, a definition: a synopsis is generally a “selling tool” to show to an agent…

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Who Writes Like Me?

I’ve addressed this topic informally on my blog, but in the last few days, I’ve received four nearly identical emails from new readers, so I think it’s time to address the topic formally. Each reader spoke of discovering me with The Secret Life of CeeCee Wilkes, and each went on to read Before the Storm. A…

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Where There is No Doctor

I was surfing the web today (okay, I was reading political stuff. I’m addicted), when I saw a picture of two men reading a book. The cover of the book was familiar, and I zoomed in to see that they were reading one of the best friends a novelist could own: Where There is No…

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Beginning with the End

I started writing as a hobby when I was a hospital social worker a looong time ago (think typewriter and carbon paper. ugh). I thought that working on a novel, the idea for which I’d had in my mind from the time I was twelve years old, would be a fun pastime. After about six…

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Sex and the Teenaged Reader

It’s time to revisit the topic of sensual scenes in fiction, but not for the usual “one of my readers is offended by graphic sex in my books” reason.  A few days ago, I received a sincere and thoughtful email from a woman who recently discovered my books and is really enjoying them. She wishes she could share…

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All in the Family

My family’s pretty talented, if I do say so myself. My parents were not very artistic. . . or even “into” the arts, so I’m not sure where our various passions came from, but they certainly do exist. I wanted to write from the time I was a kid, as did my younger brother Rob.…

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Topsail Island, After the Storm

 One of my readers, Donna Moffett, just sent me these pictures taken by her husband Dick. They show the northern end of Topsail Island after the last spate of storms. This is the string of houses I wrote about in Before the Storm — fictionalizing them of course. It’s so scary to see how quickly…

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Missing the Reunion

Okay, the first thing I want to know is, how the heck did I ever get my hair so straight? I must have worked on it for hours and hours with the ol’ iron, ironing board, and soda can rollers. Last night was my high school reunion, and I couldn’t go. I really, really wanted to,…

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Two Tense

                        Hmmm. . .this happened when I was writing Before the Storm, and it’s happening again. As I wrote Before the Storm, the story unveiled itself to me in present tense.  I ended up changing it all to past tense (with the exception of…

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A Name for Every Day of the Year

Time to talk about names again! I mentioned a while back that my assistant was going through my books, creating a spreadsheet of all the names I’ve used so that I can exercise caution when naming new characters. She’s finished, just in time for me to start naming a new crop of folks for my…

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