Sunday, November 11, 2012

Revision Hell, Delays, and Final Successes

revision For over a year I have been announcing, postponing, and struggling with the release of the first novel written under my own name. If readers have been frustrated, I apologize from the bottom of my heart. You have no idea how frustrating it has been for ME. But I’m really happy to FINALLY announce that it will be available in both print and ebook in time for Christmas.

The book was written over a year and a half ago, and nearly went live a year ago. The first delay was due to a serious illness striking the wonderful woman I had hired to do my editing and formatting. The second was due to my own health concerns, and then it all went to hell in a handbasket. CRY UNCLE is book 1 in a series that has a minimum of 3, but will most likely keep going as long as I’m still breathing to write it.  My protagonist, Maggie Gallagher, is a special agent for the FBI who returns home to solve a murder mystery she’s been obsessed with since childhood. It’s a very dark story with very light—or, at least, heavily humorous—elements. Unfortunately the first book sets up those to follow,  and changes in the Catholic church in my area—where the book is set—made a very careful re-write absolutely vital to avoid problems in future books. Maggie has a brother who is a priest, and the third book involves a mystery with Father Jordan, so my church facts had to line up.

The changes made in the past few years by the Boston Archdiocese actually gave me BETTER plot movement. The re-writes actually helped me, having been away from the manuscript for a long time, notice other issues that I wanted to tweak. CRY UNCLE (and the books to come) has a strong first person perspective that breaks the fourth wall, and I think this requires a delicate hand. Done well, it builds intimacy between narrator and reader. Done poorly, it strips away the willing suspension of disbelief, becomes campy, and leaves the book in rubble.

So, with apologies to those of you who have been SO KIND to email me, show support and interest, and give me your patience, we’re getting our baby! A much better book is coming your way, just in time for the holidays.

Thank you so much for bearing with me.

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