Researching Dreams

Friday, April 5, 2019

  I have to admit, the research for The Dream Peddler wasn’t particularly intense, and that’s probably just because I chose not to do tons of research. Despite the historical setting, I had read enough books from the time and learned enough in school to at least sketch out what the world of my characters would be like. I stopped writing now and then to google things like images of…

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Love Story, Perfect Day

Friday, March 29, 2019

  If you’ve never seen Love Story starring Ryan O’Neal and Ali MacGraw, then you many not know that yes, it’s a love story but spoiler, she dies at the end. When I started thinking about my “perfect” day for this week’s post, for some reason my mind went to that movie, because there’s a scene near the end that I’ve always found interesting. I can’t remember exactly what Ali…

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The World of THE DREAM PEDDLER

Friday, March 15, 2019

    When I was in the stage of getting feedback on early drafts of this book, more than one reader told me they wished I would just come out and say precisely when and where the story takes place. “It’s obviously American,” they said. “Why not just name the town? And why not just say what year it is? Why do we have to guess?” Well, because I said…

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Attacus Atlas & Other Inventions: IRL, 1966-2010

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

In my novel, The Atlas of Reds and Blues, I tried to capture the real world — the nonfiction world of the main character — from her earliest memories to the day she is shot by police and lays bleeding in her driveway. It’s a short novel. I tried to capture what she remembered, what she lived through — it was a pleasure to include such iconic moments as Woodstock…

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When Shy Writes A Book

Friday, March 8, 2019

  In some ways, I really had to overcome my personality in order to write a book. I’m a hopeless introvert, so I’m still marveling at how an introvert who doesn’t really want to talk to anyone was ever able to write an entire book full of reasonably believable characters. Especially since I had to come up with a lot of things for them to say. This is a tough…

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Casting The Dream Peddler

    I’ve been planning the movie of The Dream Peddler for a long, long time. I believe I’ve even mentioned Bradley Cooper a couple of times on this very blog. So I have a pretty good idea of which actors I would ideally cast for each role. The best part about this week’s blog is that I have full control. Every actor I’ve ever loved is not only available…

Friday, February 22, 2019
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Dear Lucy Maude

    In many ways, The Dream Peddler is a love letter to L. M. Montgomery. I can’t think of any author whose work I spent more time reading during my adolescence. Eventually I collected every novel she ever wrote, and read many of them over and over. Back then I never gave any thought to the opportunities to read something new that I was squandering every time I picked…

Friday, February 15, 2019
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The Comp I Kept

Friday, January 25, 2019

    I know you’ll all be shocked when I announce that I did not use comp titles in my query. I did not. I don’t think I was taking any particular stance in this; it’s just that I had a very hard time to come up with any, and very few agents actually required them. I described my book and sent my query off without them, and that seemed…

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Interview with Barbara Ridley + WHEN IT’S OVER giveaway

Saturday, January 12, 2019

We are so excited to welcome Barbara Ridley to the Debutante Ball this week! Barbara was born in England but has lived in California for more than 35 years. After a successful career as a nurse practitioner, which included publication of academic articles in peer-reviewed journals, she is now focused on creative writing. Her work has appeared in journals such as Writers Workshop Review, ArsMedica, The Copperfield Review, Blood and Thunder and Stoneboat.  WHEN IT’S…

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2018 Hit List

Friday, December 28, 2018

    An American Marriage by Tayari Jones** From the publisher: Newlyweds Celestial and Roy are the embodiment of both the American Dream and the New South. He is a young executive, and she is an artist on the brink of an exciting career. But as they settle into the routine of their life together, they are ripped apart by circumstances neither could have imagined. In this deft exploration of…

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