A Couple of More Questions on Writing

Editorial assistant Sophie

Here are some more questions from readers, with the same caveat at last week: my answers describe my process, which may be totally different from yours. Neither is “right”; what matters is what works for you. From Donald Kirby: When you have two openings that appeal equally, how do you choose? That actually happened to me on Long Black Curl. I wanted … Read More

Talk like a pirate, win a book

So this Friday, September 19th, is International Talk Like a Pirate Day. Now that’s something I can really get behind. I love pirates. From The Black Swan to The Sea Hawk, from Raphael Sabatini to William Goldman, from Errol Flynn to Johnny Depp, I dig them all. And not just the fictional ones: I’ve seen Blackbeard’s cannon and Black Sam … Read More

7 Questions About My Most Recent Novel


Okay, I was supposed to do this on Monday, but it got away from me. Thanks to Lucy Jane Bledsoe for tagging me in this, and to Melissa Olson and Deborah Blake for agreeing to be tagged for next Monday. Here are seven questions about my most recent book:   1. What is the name of your character? Eddie LaCrosse. 2. … Read More

The Secrets of Writing Action Scenes

Back in 1991, Timothy Zahn rejuvenated the Star Wars franchise with Heir to the Empire, the first new, non-comic Star Wars tale since the end of the first trilogy. Like every SW fan, I devoured it, but I remember thinking that although Zahn nailed the characters, he totally blew the battle scenes. The reason was simple: what takes seconds to … Read More

How Long Should a Series Run?


My friend (and fan) Richard Garrison asked me, “Kevin Smith of Clerks fame has stopped making movies, claiming the ‘tank was empty.’ A lot of writers continue a series well past it’s arc in some cases to meet reader demands, in some cases to pay the bills. When you start a series, do you see the end of the arc, … Read More

Hearing Voices

A while back, Facebook friend Diana May-Waldman asked me, “When you write, do you ever get stuck in character for a little while?” My initial response was an instantaneous, “no,” but then I got to thinking about it. I write two series in first person: my Eddie LaCrosse novels, and the Firefly Witch short stories. When you write in first … Read More

Another ARC of He Drank, and Saw the Spider

So it’s time for another visual clue to some of the things you’ll find in He Drank, and Saw the Spider, the upcoming fifth Eddie LaCrosse novel.  Since I gave away two ARCs last time (due to a tie), for this caption contest I’ll give away two more.  Leave your comment by midnight Sunday, September 22 for a chance to … Read More

Second hint, and a chance to win an ARC


As I said last week, the advance reader copies (ARCs) of He Drank, and Saw the Spider are available, and they do me no good sitting in the box in my study. So below you’ll find another photographic hint about the book. And here’s the contest: the best caption (as determined by me) wins a signed ARC! So leave a … Read More

First hint for the new Eddie LaCrosse

16 years later

Since the next Eddie LaCrosse novel, He Drank, and Saw the Spider, doesn’t come out until this winter, I thought I’d start dropping some little visual hints about it.  This picture contains a pretty obvious one: there is a sixteen-year-jump in the story. But if you can place the rest of the picture, you might also discern a few more … Read More

No More Heroines


I don’t like heroines. If you’re familiar with my work, you should immediately know I mean the word heroine, not the concept of the female protagonist. I’ve written one fantasy novel (The Hum and the Shiver) and a series of short stories (The Firefly Witch) with strong, tough female main characters, and I try to make the women in my Eddie … Read More