January 6th, 2012

My big week!

My week started with a big family gathering, where I took the opportunity to tell my dad and my brother, both pilots, about how I had crashed an airplane in Such a Rush, just to make sure I'd gotten my facts straight, and they both said, "You can't do that." My dad proceeded to look up exactly why I couldn't do that and show it to me. My brother, on the other hand, said, "Here is what you could do instead." My dad wants to help, but my brother is someone I can always count on not just to give me information for writing a book but to help me get where I need to go in a book. I can say, "The crash needs to last longer than that," and my dad will say, "Sorry, but the crash won't last that long," and my brother will say, "Here is what could happen that would make it longer." The difference, plain and simple, is that my brother has always been a voracious reader of fiction, and my dad does not read fiction because it's not real and is therefore a waste of time.

They are still helping me work out the details. However, I can tell my brother is way overdue for writing his own book. First he was trying to get me to crash the plane by having the advertising banner towed by one plane wrap around the engine of another. I told him THIS IS NOT A ROMANTIC COMEDY and we are trying to crash the plane in a dramatic way. I really work hard to keep the comedy quirkiness out of my dramas so they don't lapse into silliness, ruining the tension. I learned this lesson when I reluctantly took all the llamas out of Forget You. I thought my brother understood me on this point, but then he tried to get me to crash the plane into an alligator farm that houses the world's longest alligator in captivity. I just smiled because he had been helping me a few minutes before, but I wanted to tell him that he was on crack.

After the family visit, my husband and I got away for a few days in Puerto Rico! The island was beautiful, the culture was fascinating, and the people were nothing but nice. There is definitely a return trip and a novel set in Puerto Rico at some point in my future.

While I was gone, Winter's Kiss appeared in stores, and Smitten With Reading posted a very kind review. I am still tired from my whirlwind mailing of copies to book bloggers, but I'm trying to get my second wind, because I expect copies of The One That I Want any day now in advance of the publication of the paperback on February 7. Stuck in YA Books has published a lovely review of the e-book version.

I got back to work yesterday and hit the ground running. I'm writing a proposal, I'm taking over as webmistress for Southern Magic from the lovely and brilliant Carla Swafford, and I had a conference call with my editor and the art director about the cover of Such a Rush. This is my hardcover debut on July 10 and it's a huge honking book, so we are trying to get the cover exactly right. It's going to be beautiful. I will be able to show you soon. And in the next few days, I'll be concentrating on the copyedit of the book, changing the Grumman to a Stearman that hits a tree instead of power line (I think), and very purposefully avoiding all mentions of alligators.