My Writing

I announced a few weeks ago that I have set for myself an ambitious publishing program for this year, and that it was going to start with the publication of two of my books, Lost Mothers and Every New Beginning. I set the publication date for March 21, 2016, but a production issue has slowed …

Change the DateRead More »

When I used to work for Bantam Books, back in the day, I occasionally was tasked with writing back cover copy for books that I had edited. I should say, rewriting. Bantam did have copywriters, but my boss, Carolyn, was a perfectionist when it came to back cover copy. After all, along with a book’s …

Writing Back Cover CopyRead More »

I decided late in 2015 to do a complete overhaul of the books I’ve published. Along with my two e-books, Lost Mothers and Every New Beginning, I wanted to republish my five romances and my novel, Free Fall. So my wonderful agent, Paige Wheeler, her assistant, Ana-Maria Bonner, and I put our heads together and …

My Books Are Back!Read More »

A few months ago, I posted that I was going to write a mystery. I had decided to take the rather unwieldly general-fiction novel I was writing and recast it as a mystery. I did some research, since the book would deal in part with spies during World War II and the Cold War, and …

Writing a Different MysteryRead More »

I have always loved mysteries. Maybe it’s because my favorite book when I was ten or so was Harriet the Spy. Actually, Mary Stewart’s romantic suspense novels, which a friend of my mother’s introduced me to when I was in my teens, were what really hooked me. I clearly recall walking to my local bookstore …

Writing a MysteryRead More »

A writer I know complained to me about the editing on her latest book. “Too much!” she said. “The editor changed my style!” I commiserated. As H. G. Wells noted, the urge to rewrite someone else’s words can be irresistible. I always remember the advice my first boss in publishing, the woman who taught me …

Editors and AuthorsRead More »

Several writers I know have employed a style of revising that I call the living-room-floor technique for revisions. It’s simple enough—take your printed manuscript and spread it out on the living room floor (or any room with enough space) and start rearranging. Move chapter five to the beginning; take a slow-moving scene and put it …

The Living-Room-Floor Technique for RevisionsRead More »

I grew up with the New York Times. Even though we lived in Philadelphia, my parents both read the Sunday Times. Naturally, when I lived in New York after college, the Sunday Times was sacrosanct. When I moved to New Hampshire, I would stroll up to the local corner store early Sunday mornings to buy …

While Working for a Publishing Company…Read More »

A few years ago, I started the novel that became As the Crow Flies. Two basic things I knew were that much of the novel would be set in a fictional town I had created in my previous book, and that part would be set in Edinburgh in the late 1990s. I also knew that …

The Essential and Fun Task of ResearchRead More »

I recently read The Art of Slow Writing by Louise DeSalvo. The author is a professor at Hunter College, where she began the college’s MFA in Memoir program, and has also published numerous books. In this particular book she assures writers that it’s perfectly all right to take a long time to complete a writing …

Keeping a Process JournalRead More »

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