Fiction My timeline is collapsing.

My timeline is collapsing.

Yesterday’s New York Times headline read, nay, screamed: Cyberattacks Put Russian Fingers on the Switch at Power Plants, U.S. Says  (NYT, 3/15/18) … And blew my fictional timeline to bits. The first Joe Mayfield/Louise Napolitani novel, Fatal Score, turned on the idea that a good technological development (gene sequencing and analysis) is borrowed to shore …

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Fiction Reorganizing

Reorganizing

I’ve changed the site around a bit. I am approaching completion on novel number three (Fail Deadly) and am sketching out number four.  There’s a new page on this site (Novels) with the blurbs for the first three stories.  Those of you who have had to go through the difficult process of creating a blurbs, …

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Fiction Google and Real Places

Google and Real Places

Google is wonderful.  For a person writing thrillers, it’s a critical resource.  Need a Russian phrase?  No problem. An overhead view of a village like Hainburg an der Donau in Austria (my second novel)?  Google Maps has you covered. The uniform of a Florida state trooper?  Google images. But … there is no substitute to actually having been …

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Fiction Genre, Storytelling, Literary Fiction

Genre, Storytelling, Literary Fiction

I recently applied to a contest that asked, as part of the upload, what the genre of my novel is.  I answered dutifully, Thriller. Yes, I know that the judges have to have some way to classify submissions, and I have just read a bit about plot, timing of events, when backstory is best introduced, …

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Fiction Plot Complexity and the Value of Regularity

Plot Complexity and the Value of Regularity

A fine Minnesota writer, William Kent Krueger, plans his mystery novels out in detail, I’m told.  He is well known for going to a diner each morning and writing.  His stories are detailed and coherent, and his prose is clear and finely balanced.  His Ordinary Grace won the 2014 Edgar for best novel.  Clearly, he …

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Fiction Cyberwar

Cyberwar

Not long ago, a writer friend said, “You’d better get published quickly, or your concept will be part of history.” He’s right. Back when I got the idea for my first novel, Fatal Score, I thought there would be a future war in cyberspace. I guessed at the time (2011) that it would start with …

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Fiction Art, Wisdom, and the Comics

Art, Wisdom, and the Comics

I must admit that I glance at the front page of the paper, scan the news of the day and go to the comics page for wisdom. So, here you have it.  We writers often miss this truth, vainly trying to lock the reader into our own special vision. (from www.sallyforth.com)

Fiction Fiction and reality

Fiction and reality

I have just returned from a trip to reality. In my second novel, a main character is drugged and pushed off a Danube river boat. She ends up in a little town at the eastern edge of Austria called Hainburg an der Donau. With my Internet resources, I was able to see a Google World …

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Fiction Best Mysteries/Thrillers — Fall and Winter Reading List

Best Mysteries/Thrillers — Fall and Winter Reading List

I am reading through a list of 15 36 48 books that I believe define the genre I’m writing in, Mystery/thriller.  I’ve attached my list as a separate page. When I began writing, I didn’t choose a type of fiction or a genre. I just started  telling stories. To my surprise, I found I was …

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Fiction Putting an Edge on Writing

Putting an Edge on Writing

My wife, Beverly, can’t stand the sound of knives being sharpened. Clever person that she is, she gave me a professional knife sharpener several years ago. It’s big and electric, so she has plenty of warning when the urge to sharpen takes me.  The device has three sharpening positions. The first one comes with a …

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