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Posts Tagged ‘contemporary romance’

This article appeared a few weeks before Wait a Lonely Lifetime, my debut novel, hit the libraries and online booksellers. Amazon Publishing had already purchased Avalon and my career as a published author was already on shaky ground.

March 23, 2012

Cover art for Wait a Lonely LifetimeThe forthcoming publication of my debut novel, Wait a Lonely Lifetime, with Avalon Books calls for some attention to the hero of this book:  U.S. Army officer, Eric E. Wasserman, who doesn’t feel comfortable in civilian clothes.

I admit, when I see a man in uniform, I look twice. I don’t know if this is a genetic anomaly or a primordial instinct but there is something about a human male impeccably dressed, starched, buttoned and tied that unleashes a basic response from me: instant & rarely unjustified trust, a sense of security and protection as well as a recognition of pride and courage.

Medal of Valor presented to US soldierThis could be because so many of the most trustworthy, dependable men I have known have been the uniformed kind. This could also be the reason I have made my hero, Eric Wasserman, uncomfortable out of uniform when he first meets the love of his life and why he chooses to wear only military garb when they next meet.

His choice to return to Army life after a brief stint as a civilian has as much to do with the story development as with my own military-philia, having a long, proud history of U.S. Army, Navy and Air Force family members. Eric came to life when I saw him as a gawky, ex-GI out of his element among art college students.

 Readers of Wait a Lonely Lifetime will recognize this scene.


Readers of Wait a Lonely Lifetime will recognize this scene.

Eric Wasserman is a fictional character who embodies all I can imagine of the best of the male of our species: characteristics I have observed throughout my life; characteristics that are embedded in their genetic coding. My first novel for Avalon is my way of saying thank to people who have been important in my life – both familiar and unknown.Feeling out of our element is something we all share at one time or another. Eric’s second-in-command, Lt. Cleonina Jones, forces him to face his desertion of the only woman he has ever loved, Sylviana Innocenti, and take responsibility for his part in the unhappy outcome.

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Rebecca Boschee’s interview with me has now been posted at Avalon Authors’ Blogspot. Hope you enjoy it. Rebecca asked some thought-provoking and searching questions. You may comment at the Avalon Authors’ blog or here. I will respond.

Thank you.

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As part of my Virtual Launch of Wait a Lonely Lifetime published by Avalon Books and now available on several online bookshops, Sandra Carey Cody posted an excerpt from the first chapter of the novel on her website: SandraCareyCody. Use the following link and click on the Guest Excerpt tab.

Sandra Carey Cody is one of my fellow writer colleagues at Avalon Books, writing in the Mystery genre. She has very generously offered to host this excerpt and I am happy to be able to share some of her books with you: Put Out the Light (2005); Consider the Lilly (2008); By Whose Hand (2009). Her most recent book for Avalon is Left at Oz (2011).

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As part of my Virtual Launch of Wait a Lonely Lifetime published by Avalon Books and now available on several online bookshops, Sandra Carey Cody has posted an excerpt from the first chapter of the novel on her website: SandraCareyCody. Use the following link and click on the Guest Excerpt tab.

Sandra Carey Cody is one of my fellow writer colleagues at Avalon Books, writing in the Mystery genre. She has very generously offered to host this excerpt and I am happy to be able to share some of her books with you: Put Out the Light (2005); Consider the Lilly (2008); By Whose Hand (2009). Her most recent book for Avalon is Left at Oz (2011).

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My journey home from work took a turn from the usual when I left the office a bit after 3PM and decided to take the first streetcar going toward the southwest of the city. I met one of my usual bus drivers, but going in the opposite direction, since I usually catch his route twenty minutes later going north. I walked into the apartment at 4PM. DR arrived at 4:30, mail in hand, including a pale salmon-colored card from the USPS.

The card said the postman  was sorry he missed me but had left a parcel in the office of the apartment complex. DR and I had planned to leave for the club for dinner at 5:45 so we had our New Mexican Piñon Coffee and I went to work on my next novel, Salsa Dancing with Pterodactyls. I had some emails to answer as well.

Once we got to the office, I handed my card over to one of the agents. Another resident also had a salmon card so she took his and returned with two parcels about the same size. Mine was on top and seemed to have been opened – the tape was loose but both ends were sound.

I took a look at the return address: RON PLACE. I didn’t have to read any further, even though I didn’t recognize the name. I KNEW! I gasped and started to rip at the tape. DR took his key to the tape and I pulled. It’s April, I thought, I haven’t ordered anything.

“It’s my book.”

Then the box was open and I dug the first copy out of the paper packing. Everyone in the office, the caterer at the club saw that first copy.

Every book I’ve seen from Avalon has been gorgeous. Mine is no exception.

It’s official. I have a book.

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Cover ImageForget blurbs. Forget synopses. Forget even writing a novel or composing the jacket cover biography. The hardest job is finding a title. You’ve written a book to be proud of. You’ve put years of experience, months of work, weeks of revision, days of anticipation into the masterpiece. What keeps you awake night after night? The title.

What comes to mind? Nothing as arresting, compelling, delightful, thrilling as the story. No. What do you do?

Sometimes I search the manuscript for phrases that catch the eye or the imagination. Funny thing. There never seems to be one that meets expectations. Does that mean…? Could that mean the book isn’t as great as I thought? I don’t entertain that thought for very long. That’s just “Title Search Paranoia” whittling down writer confidence.

What’s in a title, anyway? Just about everything, at least according to one of my college professors. Get that right and you’ve put a book in someone’s hands. Get it wrong and you’re overlooked for the catwalk creation sitting next to your wallflower. You need resonance. You need speaks to the heart/soul. What you get in the middle of the night is, well,… not much.

Sometimes, the best one comes to you as a flash of serendipity. Sometimes you agonize. Sometimes, you find a title before you know your characters’ names or written a word.I carry a notebook in my bag. When a title presents itself, I make a note. Too often, the moment of inspiration passes without recognition. Just as often, the recorded title has no meaning when I next open that notebook.

Once in a while, I find myself locked into a title that is exactly perfect. Much more often, the novel is written, the characters ready for their moment to be read but the book is “untitled” or has the first name of one of the characters to distinguish it from all the other works in progress in my computer filing system.

In the case of my first novel for Avalon Books (to be released in April) the title came to me as I was walking to meet my lift to work. I was singing in my head and there it was. Wait a Lonely Lifetime has two significant events or connections to recommend it to me.

You may know it from the Beatles’ song, “I Will”:

Will I wait a lonely lifetime?
If you want me to, I will.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JJ3-32OS-Vk&feature=related

 This was the song in my head and is actually a musical reference to a song that always breaks my heart when I hear it and one that both DR and I shared as a favorite when we first met – playing on the jukebox in a bar in Noe Valley – we were on our second date. The music and lyrics are by Stephen Bishop and the song’s title is “Looking for the Right One”:

Will I wait another lifetime,
Keep on looking for the right one?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mdUdsgG4ndM

 Art Garfunkel also recorded this song but I prefer Bishop’s original. You decide:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KVDv7RwmZic&feature=artistob&playnext=1&list=TLH28RLFJeT30

This line, these four words, were and are perfect for the story I tell in Wait a Lonely Lifetime, of two people who find “the right one” but are kept apart for a ‘lifetime’ by the calculated interference of someone they both thought of as a friend.

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Promotional Material for Wait a Lonely Lifetime

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