Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Return from New York City

James D. Best
We had a great visit to the Big Apple. Father/daughter cruise around Manhattan, grandson playing a double header on Randall's Island, a bowling outing on Chelsea Pier, plus monopoly, XBox Madden Football, and myriad other games. I don't know how many times we made the trip between the West and East side. Whew! I'm tired and happy to be sitting quietly in Omaha. Except, not so quietly. My daughter reminded me we have a formal event this evening and her kids are anxious to see us after school today. If it wasn't so much fun, I'd run for cover.

One of the things I need to figure out is a new writing schedule. Since moving for Arizona to Omaha, my schedule has been erratic. The grandchildren have been the easiest. After all, they go to school during the week. The big problem is that I had forgotten how much work it was to change a legal residence. A new mortgage, cars, licenses, insurance, address changes, utilities, voter registration, etc, etc all demand personal attention. Then we have this new house we intend to wreck, then refurbish and re-skin. This is a big change for someone used to spending five or six hours a day sitting in a chair writing about his friends' adventures.

That's what my characters are: friends. I miss them. Besides, it takes nearly a year to get a book written and published. I've begun the research, which means I’m reading about the historical location and plot points. It’s all good prep work, but it’s also an easy way to procrastinate. I need to get seriously committed to writing. That’s when I get excited and can’t wait to get back to the keyboard.

Until now, I wrote an entirely different book between each of the Steve Dancy Tales. I wanted my approach to Steve and his friends to remain fresh, and I thought regular breaks from the series would do the trick. I believe the tactic has helped, but also has hurt building a stronger following. Two years between books causes some readers to wander off to another place and time. Besides, the Dancy books sell very well and the series has built an ardent fan base. So … my next book will be the fifth in the series.

Where I go from there, I’ll decide next year.

James D. Best
Steve Dancy Tales

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