This year I took a pass on winter. In more ways than one, you might be thinking. I have been absent from this blog, not particularly active on my “author” Facebook page. What the heck was I doing?
Writing, mainly. I finished a book at the end of January, which allowed me to celebrate my birthday in great style, revised it in February, then enjoyed another respite that was perfectly timed to coincide with Mardi Gras. (Although I did write a short story in that lull, for Laurie King and Leslie Klinger’s anthology of Sherlock-Holmes-related stories. Link tk.) On Monday, I will send the copy-edited pages back to my editor; I also just finished an essay on MILDRED PIECE, which I will promote once it’s been posted on line.
And now I have to start another book. For those keeping score at home, I started my 16th novel, THE MOST DANGEROUS THING, in February ’10 and finished it in less than twelve months. My next novel is due in January ’12. Uh-oh. Doesn’t bode well for the old blog, does it? But I will try. Here I am, on a Saturday, when I’m supposed to be on Internet Sabbath, but my household is as quiet as Sleeping Beauty’s kingdom during the spell, everyone else napping after a trip to a small festival thrown by a French school. Frites, croque monsieur, bierre and zydeco. It was a very nice festival.
This year also marks the first time in my life I have been an accidental snowbird. I always have — and always will be — a little vague about my whereabouts, but I can tell you now that I spent most of the winter in warm climes, New Orleans primarily, with my usual annual trip to St. Petersburg. And every time I showed up in Baltimore, it was freakishly warm.
I can’t say I missed winter, yet — I missed winter. I don’t feel I’ve earned spring, yet here it is. A few things of note.
I’D KNOW YOU ANYWHERE is nominated for the Edgar (r), The Los Angeles Times Book Award and the Spinetingler “Best Novel (by a legend) award. I am happy. The Edgar shortlist includes three people I consider good friends (Harlan Coben, Tom Franklin, Steve Hamilton). Tom is also nominated for the LA Times award. We asked our mutual publisher, Morrow, to let us fly together from NYC to LA. Is is possible to want someone else to win an award over you? I think it might be and I hope to have that theory tested.
Baltimore Blues became an ebook bestseller fourteen years after its initial release, thanks to a Barnes & Noble program that dropped the price to 99 cents for a month.
The Girl in the Green Raincoat, which was once available for free, also hit the Times list when it was published in trade paperback.
I am on the verge of re-signing with Harpercollins for three more books. I’ve already written sixteen novels and one book of short stories, all for the same editor.
And how was your winter?