THE CALM BEFORE THE STORM...
Well, if ever I wanted an easy life, I know now that I'm not going to get it!
I have worked like a dog these past few weeks to get 'The Saints of New York' completed. That was done and dusted a week or so ago. Prior to that I completed the first draft of the screenplay for 'A Quiet Belief In Angels', and proof-read the pages for 'The Anniversary Man', due out here in September. I also had to proof-read the American version of 'Quiet Belief' in readiness for its release, also in September. There have been the usual endless procession of interviews, meetings, events and publishers' obligations, and I did all this with the underlying awareness that once we reached June things would start to get crazy. Well, they have.
Next week I am doing three libraries a day for four days in Cumbria; tack on a day travelling at each end and it's a week's tour. I come home for three days, and then I am off to Paris for four days - interviews with Nouvel Observateur, Paris Match, radio stations, events at bookstores etc., some of it further promotion for the French 'Quiet Belief', some of it preparatory promotion for the September release of 'Vendetta'. I am then home for four days or so, and then it's Filey on the 2nd of July, Whitby on the 3rd, home on the the 4th for four days and then out to New York on the 9th. I'm away for six days and will be doing Thrillerfest and numerous interviews and meetings with US bookbuyers and booksellers. A week after that it's 'Bodies In The Bookshop' in Cambridge, then Harrogate on the 25th and 26th...
August looks like I'm home, but you never know.
September we have the UK release of 'The Anniversary Man' on the 3rd, the US release of 'A Quiet Belief In Angels' on the 8th, the French release of 'A Quiet Vendetta' (called simply 'Vendetta'), and Lord knows what else. The release months are always mad-busy, and it looks like we might be doing the UK launch party at Cactus TV in London. Now that would be something special!
The really exciting trip is October. An eight city US tour which will take me back to New York, also to Washington DC, Chicago, Indianapolis (for Bouchercon 2009), Phoenix, Atlanta, Nashville and Boston. That's going to run from the 9th the the 19th.
Oh, and the first print run for the US release is 100,000 (yes, one hundred thousand!) hardbacks. The publisher (Overlook Press) has sent out many, many galley proofs and has secured VERY positive and complimentary comments from the likes of Clive Cussler, Ken Bruen, Alan Furst, David Stone, Otto Penzler, Val McDermid and James Patterson. Overlook have worked extraordinarily hard, and I am indebted to them for their amazing enthusiasm and dedication to this project.
So, as you can see, things have been busy, but it seems they are going to get one hell of a lot busier.
I am looking forward to responses to the screenplay, also the reception for 'The Anniversary Man', and - perhaps most interestingly - the US response to 'A Quiet Belief In Angels'. It has been a hectic six months, but hard work is like heroin to me, and I am in my element when there are deadlines, pressures, impossible demands and more to do than is really possible. As they say, heat and pressure makes diamonds.
One thing I am doing is more reading. I have been reading Cormac McCarthy, Daniel Woodrell, Salinger, McCullers, and have now embarked upon 'The Executioner's Song' by Normal Mailer. And I have started making notes and undertaking research for the next book (which, if they publish the ones I have already written, will be released in 2012). It's working title is 'Bad Signs', and though it more than likely will not keep that title I find it is always better to have something than nothing. Though it will tie into events on the West Coast, also Nevada, it will be placed predominantly in the Deep South. I am not in a desperate hurry to get started on it as I have 'The Anniversary Man' yet to be released, and another two books complete beyond that, but - as is always the case with me - if I am not working on something, even indirectly, then I tend to get restless. If not sat in front of a typewriter I tend to slouch around in a bathrobe, never shaving, always drinking, yelling at kids in the street and taking pot shots at the neighbour's dogs with a BB gun. Oh well, someone's gotta do it, right?
So I trust all is well with you. I believe we are in for a long, hot summer, and for those of you who like that sort of thing...well, go ahead and enjoy it. And for those of you that don't, just find somewhere cool and shadowed, take a pile of books with you, and don't come out until September.
Take care my friends. Best wishes, as always,