Above is pictured one of the critters encountered by Helki the Rod in Lintum Forest: it plays an important role in Behold!, Book No.14 in my Bell Mountain series. I lost a lot of time to illness, but today I’ve finished the first round of editing–and contacted our cover artist, Kirk DuoPonce. Let’s see what he can come up with.
What would happen if a piece of advanced technology from an extinct civilization fell into the hands of people living 1,000 years later? What if the finders wished to use it–although they have no understanding of such things?
And then there are those ships, the first to cross the ocean from the west since Obann’s Empire was destroyed. Will they bring some new disaster with them?
I hope we can get this book on the market in time for Christmas. Next year, maybe The Witch Box will be ready, double climax and all. And I’m looking forward to warmer weather so I can start writing the life of King Ozias. If you like these books, there’s a lot of fun in store for you.
We have no plans to add Oy, Rodney to our schedule. My wife would like to see the adventures of Abombalbap in book form, but I think that might be beyond my powers.
I can’t take any more nooze today. It makes me feel like crying. I just want to get back to work editing Behold!
But first another hymn: Gloria in excelsus Deo, sung by the Libera Boys’ Choir.
“Glory to God in the highest…” Amen.
Okay, it wasn’t quite that cold yesterday. But it was cold enough.
Last year I finished writing Behold! on literally the last day I could have finished it–no more good weather until the spring.
Looks like I’m in the same boat this year.
Yesterday it threatened rain all day and was just too cold. Under 50 degrees, the ink just won’t come out of the pen. Today it’s under 50, but maybe I can find a sunny spot.
Some of you wonder why I have to write outdoors. Well, there are too many distractions indoors. The worst are those nuisance phone calls: “Hello! [in thick Indian accent you could cut with a knife] This is Brian O’Shaughnessy from Acme Spindulators…” Those just wipe out my concentration. Conversely, I find the trees and the sky and the birds good for my concentration. They help me see the scenes I’m writing about.
But I am definitely running short of days, so one more blog post and then maybe the sun will be high enough to create a warm spot for me somewhere. I’m dealing with a ship that’s been at sea for 40 years and I have to do something about it.
Well, saddle up, we’ve got a ways to go…
Okay! I’ve written the first few pages of my new book, as yet untitled–although I do have a chapter title: “The Blow Will Fall on Durmurot,” the most indefensible city in all Obann.
I do need a book title, but that, I pray, will come. I worked outside until it got too hot: indoors, we get too many nuisance robo-calls. I will soon know how many times I can say “Bite me” to a robot. Not much point to that, although I do need to vent from time to time.
Poor Durmurot. All they want to do is produce enough copies of the Scriptures to distribute all throughout Obann–and across the mountains, too, if possible. General Born refuses to send any more military aid to Durmurot, and he may be acting wisely. We shall see.
But what’s going on in Lintum Forest might be an even bigger danger. Wish I knew exactly what it was! But that’ll come, too.
Meanwhile, Chalcedon’s crack editorial staff has begun work on Book No. 14, Behold!, and No. 13, The Wind from Heaven, is being printed and will go on sale any day now.
How many books will there be in the series?
As many as God gives me. That’s all I know about it.
Ah! I’ve finished that book review. And The Wind from Heaven, I’m told, is at the printer’s–so it’ll go on sale any day now.
Now I want to start a new book! Patty says, “There’s nothing that says you have to write a book a year.” But I want to write one. I love writing these books. Such a welcome break from the nooze! Besides which, I want to know what happens next.
But I need a title, and I need some kind of opening scene to link the new book to Behold! I am waiting for the Lord to give me these blessings.
No, I won’t mark time by writing “The” Calecktid Wizdumb of Joe Collidge… Don’t want to drive myself bonkers, do I?
Well, I just can’t handle any more nooze today. I’m going back to re-reading Behold!–because I want to start writing another book soon, and I need to find a hook to hitch it onto the last one. It’s back to Obann for me, as soon as I can swing it.
In addition to a plotline trailer hitch, I also need a title. Years ago, when I was writing horror novels–and I got four of them published–I could never come up with a decent title. The publisher always had to change whatever title I submitted, and I have to admit that their titles were better than mine. Anybody’s titles were better than mine.
I thought, back then, that a title could just be tacked on after I’d finished writing the book. How wrong I was. A good title helps the writer steer the plot. It’s sort of what the book’s supposed to be about. You wouldn’t believe how easy it is to go off on tangents, once you lose sight of your theme.
But live and learn. I want a title and I want a hook, and I know I have to wait until the Lord provides guidance.
Because He’s a much better writer than I am.
After a night of torrential rains, it’s a cool and sunny day. But I’m indoors because I have to write my weekly Newswithviews column–not as easy as it looks.
I was reluctant to come inside. Not just because the weather’s so nice today, but also because I was out there re-reading Behold!–and if I do say so myself, it’s a very cool book and I wanted to just go on reading it. I should point out that authors don’t always feel that way about their own books, especially when they’re still scrawled over a stack of legal pads.
Maybe I can finish the column in time to get back outside.
Meanwhile, I haven’t yet found a way to bring the blog’s view numbers back up to where they were. More quokkas, anyone? Would that do it?
The Wind from Heaven is almost ready for publication. Typesetting is all done, and final proofreading is in progress. And after that comes Behold! That should be ready sometime next year.
Ah! But spring is almost here, which means it’s almost time to start writing another one. I’m happy to say I’ve already been given two key pieces of it–one of which has solved a major problem with the plot. There’s stuff going on in Durmurot, and in Lintum Forest, that has to be addressed.
In writing a series of any kind, the writer has to beware of repeating himself. Edgar Rice Burroughs got bogged down with Tarzan and ran off a dozen or more books featuring lost cities. People enjoyed them anyway, but sheesh! You couldn’t throw a brick in Africa without breaking a window in a lost city. I don’t want to do anything like that.
But the new stuff excites me, and I hope it excites my readers, too. Meanwhile, I’m waiting for a catchy title. Sometimes I get badly stuck for a title.
What new stuff? Well, I can’t tell you that, can I?
My writer’s chair is buried under snow and ice, it’s dead cold outside, and there’s more snow in the forecast–
But spring is in the air.
I know this because I’ve received an inspiration for my next Bell Mountain book, which I can’t even begin to write until spring is really here. Suddenly a really thorny plot problem has been bulldozed out of the way. Thank you, Lord!
For those of you who are new here, this blog was originally set up to generate interest in my books, and that’s still part of its mission. (If you’re really new, click “Books” and see all the covers.) This unwritten, untitled book will be the 15th in the series. We are expecting No. 13, The Wind from Heaven, to be published sometime this spring. After that comes No. 14, Behold!
Some readers have complained that this series has gone on too long. Others have said they hope it never ends. What can I say? I love writing these books, and I’ll never live long enough to match the number of books in series by my favorite authors. Did Edgar Rice Burroughs write too many Tarzan books? He thought so, but a lot of readers disagreed. Did Agatha Christie write too many books featuring Hercule Poirot? She thought so, but a lot of readers disagreed.
Whatever the case, there is now a really cool miracle waiting to become the centerpiece of No. 15, and it will truly be a pleasure to start the work.
Working at a furious pace, I finished writing Behold! yesterday, just before the weather turned nasty. Yup, got it all done.
So that night I sat down to relax with a popsicle. As you can see above, they print riddles on the popsicle sticks. You have to eat the popsicle to see the answer. But for me–for this guy who had just that day finished writing a book–get a load of this question:
“What did the author say about his novel when it was finished?” (Answer: “It’s a complete mystery.”)
Whoa! How did this happen? Is that a bodacious coincidence or what? How unlikely was it that this particular popsicle stick would wind up in my hands on that particular day?
I wonder if I ought to write to the Popsicle Company. It might make a good commercial. Can I ask for Denzel Washington to play me?