Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Truth and Lies

My need to blog was temporarily overshadowed by my need to earn a living. I know, I know. I need to get my priorities straight.

The biggest news is that I finished the third book! Well, that's not completely accurate. I wrote the ending, but now I need to go back to edit and fill in. There are some timeline issues that need to be addressed, which will take time to work out. I'm a long way from publishing. I'd say at least three months, but's pretty gosh darn exciting.

I still don't have a title for the damn thing. That could be a problem.

So, maybe you could stop sending voodoo dolls of the Prez of FKCC (although they are adorable and line the back of my desk) and start brainstorming titles. I realize that you don't know what the book is really about, but I have given a few clues. The setting is mostly Islamorada during mini season. It tells the story of several characters, some are locals who struggle to make a living and others are just passing through. Some are dangerous criminals, others are the salt of the earth. The novel is fiction, although as Stephen King once said, "fiction is the truth inside the lie".

I'll never be in the same league as King (Hello Captain Obvious!), but here's my take on what he meant. To write good fiction, you start with the truth and then build the lies around it. You know bad fiction when you read it. It's when the author doesn't do their research and things aren't believable because you recognize the inaccuracies. I've been guilty of this, especially when the characters in my books continue to insist that's how they want their stories written. I'm trying to get better at reining my characters in, rather than being a slave to their whisperings. It's not easy.

Back to the point. The third novel is fiction, which means there are snippets of truth woven through the lies to hold it all together. Maybe therein lies the title...Hmmm.

As always, your suggestions are most welcome. Until then, I have a lot of editing and cleaning up to do.

I plan to start a pool before the book is released. We'll bet on how many people will be pissed off about a fictional book that isn't about them.

About that - just this past weekend during our annual Halloween party, one of my ghoulishly-costumed guests began picking out characters from Fat Chance as they wandered through the buffet line or stood at the bar. It was so damn entertaining to watch the light bulb turn on and then she'd say, "Maude, right?" or "That's gotta be Donna!"

After all, fiction really is the truth inside the lie.

Saturday, October 4, 2014


I love when my books write themselves and that's exactly what's been happening over the past couple of days. I thought I knew where this thing was headed, but man was I wrong!

These characters have minds of their own. They do whatever they want. Apparently, I'm just along for the ride. I've lost all control and, while that may sound frightening, it's also exhilarating! Surprise!

I often wonder if some of what's unraveling in book number three is just too unrealistic to publish, but maybe that's the wrong attitude. Weird shit is happening and that's okay; it's fiction. Fortunately, there aren't hard and fast rules about what can and can't happen in a fictional story. I'm going to stick with my method of letting the book happen. I won't try to control or shape it. I'll just let the story unravel and then share it with you. Take the parts that you like and ignore the rest.

Two people died this week. (Relax. I'm referring to two fictional characters in the book.) I felt pretty bad about one of them and didn't feel like writing for about a day afterwards. Is that weird? The other one had it coming, but I may rewrite it to make that particular ending a bit more awful. Is that more weird?

Do you wonder where these stories come from? I do. What's going on in my grey matter? Honestly, I don't sit around contemplating murder, but it sure is happening frequently in my books as of late. One thing I know for sure; I always feel better after writing, whatever it is that comes out. Certainly, writing is cheaper than therapy. So is wine. Combine the two and BAM!

I've gotta get back to the madness. An idea just came to me and I want to see where it goes. The book is still without a title, but I hope that will resolve itself in the near future or it'll be published as "The Next One" and that just won't do.