New York Times  Bestselling Author

Archive for August 2009

To Write or Not to Write? Controversial Topics in Fiction

I belong to Novelists, Inc, and we’ve been having an interesting discussion on our email loop recently.  A member asked about the pros and cons of addressing controversial topics in our fiction. As you can imagine, the comments of the authors have varied just as much as their opinions on the topics themselves. I am…

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The Schizophrenic Life of a Techno-Reader

My reading life is out of control. With the advent of ebooks, I worried that authors would lose income because they make less on an ebook than they do on a “paper” book, but if most readers are anything like me, authors have nothing to worry about. Take for example, the book I’m reading right…

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The Great Blog Experiment

My webmaster has changed my blog to a WordPress blog, so I have a bit of a learning curve going on here! Let’s see how it works out. For those of you who comment frequently, let me know if you run into any snags. I hope not. Change is always a challenge, but I hope…

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The Joy and Sorrow of Reader Reviews

Let me say one thing right up front: I think it’s wonderful that there are so many opportunities on the Internet for readers to review novels they’ve read. I absolutely love being able to check out what other readers think about a book I want to buy. If most of the reviews of a certain book are glowing,…

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Unexpected Gifts

Sometimes you find the prize when you’re not looking for it. John and I were traveling the backroads of eastern North Carolina recently as I researched the setting for my work-in-progress, The Lies We Told. We stopped for an ice cream cone at an out-of-the-way restaurant, and we sat on the restaurant’s tiny porch, licking our yummy…

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You Can't Always Get What You Want

 I’ve been thinking lately about something Alex Sokoloff says in her screenwriting tips for novelists workshops (and in her blog). She talks about how characters in both books and movies) often start out wanting something that they never get, but end up getting what they need instead. If you think about your favorite movies or…

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Dogged by Research

Dang, Shelties are cute, aren’t they? My two furry babies, who are sitting next to me on the sofa as I type this, certainly think so.  But to the topic of this post. I love research. My favorite teacher in high school, Mrs. Westphal (who seemed about 100 years old to me, but was probably about…

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The Final Draft (sort of)

I’m often asked how many drafts I write when I’m working on a book. The answer: a lot. I finished my next novel, tentatively titled The Lies We Told, last week, and thought I’d show you the stack of drafts the writing generated. In my left hand, of course, I’m holding the nice, neat perfectly…

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Name that Newsletter!

I’m getting ready to create my next online newsletter, since some of you have told me you’d like to hear from me more than once or twice a year. Yes, I’ve been a little slow getting the news out! Now that many of my older books are being reissued, I agree that I need to communicate with…

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