Friday, May 29, 2009

Deep Thought

For an industry teetering on the edge of oblivion, there sure were a lot of people at Book Expo America on Friday ....

If You Give Out Free Books ....

.... the world will beat a path to your door. That's what I found out today at Book Expo America. Toby Press, which published BLOOD ALLEY, sent me two cartons of books. I figure there were 50 to 60 copies altogether. I had a half-hour to sign them and EVERY LAST ONE DISAPPPEARED.

Margery Flax of the Mystery Writers of America, who did a terrific job organizing the MWA booth, told me that the MWA was one of the few exhibitors at the Expo that was giving away books, so the line in front of the writers was pretty much constant.

For further proof of Margery's thesis, consider what happened when my stint was over. I joined my friend Tim Wendel, who was signing copies of his book RED RAIN at a table in the basement of the Javits Center. Tim signed every copy he had, and had to turn away some people. At one point he had signed every copy he had, and word was put out to get more. People waited patiently for book swag, in surprisingly good humor.

My thanks to Shari and Matthew at Toby Press for providing copies of BLOOD ALLEY, to Margery and her colleagues at MWA for running a smooth operation, and to everyone who showed up to chat and get a copy of BLOOD ALLEY. It was a wonderful event, and I have to add one more thing:


Thursday, May 28, 2009

Neptune (I Think)

Just completed the revisions to my next novel, still tentatively titled NEPTUNE. I sent the ms. to my agent, Bill Contardi at Brandt & Hochman ... and we'll take it from there.

I slashed the first draft version, which exceeded 160,000 words, down to about 87,000 by the time I sent the ms. to Bill. And I have to say, the revised version is a lot better.

I'll be signing copies of BLOOD ALLEY at Book Expo America at the Javits Center tomorrow at 3 p.m. at the Mystery Writers of America booth. Let me give a special shout-out to my friend and colleague Tim Wendel, who'll be appearing at 3:30 to sign copies of his book RED RAIN. (It's a good read! Buy it! Tim's daughter is attending a really expensive private university!)

I want to give another shout-out to my friend and colleague Lew Serviss, who recently ordered a copy of BLOOD ALLEY and sent its sales rank on Amazon up by about 800,000 places.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Two Things Worth Mentioning

Haven't done this for a while. Let's see if I remember how ...

For the first time in a while, I have a gig promoting BLOOD ALLEY. (The book came out about a year ago. To show you how swiftly and dramatically things can change, Dick Cheney was still influential back then.)

On Friday, May 29, I will be signing copies of BLOOD ALLEY at the Mystery Writers of America booth at Book Expo America. The expo is at the Javits Center in Manhattan. My gig begins at 3 p.m. and will last about a half-hour. I hope to see lots of people there, and to hand out lots of books. The cheerful and cooperative folks at my publisher, Toby Press, are sending me two cartons.

The second bit of news concerns my new novel, still tentatively titled NEPTUNE. I completed the third draft today, and will now enter the dreaded Finishing Touches phase. I still hope to have the book completed by Memorial Day.