Summertime news

Other than social media posts, including my daily Rules for Successful Living, I haven't written anything in more than a month. And I'm okay with that.

All the writing advice says you should write every day, and that's good practice when you're starting out. But veteran writers -- I've been trying to write fiction for 30 years -- occasionally need a break to recharge the mental and physical batteries. Also, life intrudes. Sometimes, you've got to stop dreaming about your next story and deal with leaky roofs and family traumas.

My wife and I have reached that age where our parents are dying or making end-of-life decisions about assisted living. Our days revolve around their care and the required government and medical paperwork. I've driven to Arkansas, where my mom lives in a nursing home, seven times in the past year and a half.

Summer is often when I write a new novel. I disappear into the book for a month or two, and come out with a first draft that I polish during the school year, when part of my time and attention is devoted to teaching at the Honors College at the University of New Mexico.

Not this summer, though. Not only am I not writing a new book, I'm not even thinking about a new book. I wrote a couple of short stories last spring, but my head is pretty much empty of story at the moment. And that's okay. Because I've been doing this so long, I'm confident the next story will show up when it's ready.

My latest crime novel, COLD CUTS, is still fresh on the market, but I've been too distracted to give it the full promotional push it deserves. It did get its first Amazon review: Five stars!

Speaking of Amazon, I'm running regular sales on my backlist on Kindle. I try to keep at least one of my Kindle books on sale for 99 cents. Currently on sale is BANK JOB, which is in development in Hollywood. Give it a read and visualize who should play the roles in a movie version!

I should note that it's not all grief and drudgery at our house. 'Tis the season of the cookout, and we have wonderful friends. Our younger son is getting married next month, and the outdoor wedding should be an occasion of great joy.

The summer monsoons have arrived in Albuquerque, which reminds me of the climactic scene in COLD CUTS. But you'll have to read it for yourself.

Until next time, happy reading!

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