I’m just in what I hope are the final editing stages of the second book in the Alafair Tucker series. I’ll be sending the (please God) final rewrite to the editor next week, and if she likes it and has no more suggestions, the book will be out late next summer or early fall. The book is entitled Hornswoggled, which wonderful title my husband Don literally dreamed up for me. In this book, Alafair’s daughter Alice falls for a man Alafair doesn’t like. She’s the only one in town who doesn’t, though, because Walter Kelley is wealthy, handsome and popular. But there’s something about him that Alafair finds off-putting. She thinks he’s thoughtless, self-involved, and phony. Not to mention that his first wife was stabbed in the heart and her body thrown in Cane Creek a few months earlier, and the murderer has never been caught.
So here we go again. Just as with The Old Buzzard Had It Coming, I loved writing Hornswoggled. While I was living in that world with those people, I felt peaceful and inspired, and greatly enjoyed trying my hardest to do the best job I could to tell their story. When I finished, I had a story that I found fun to read. But now, it’s going to be in the hands of my editor, whose opinion I respect and trust, and if she doesn’t like it, well… that’s all she wrote. So am I a little nervous? You bet I am.
I don’t want to sound too bummed here, though, because when it comes to one’s writing, or any art, for that matter, all you can do is your best. And to write these books is such a joyful thing — I would imagine a marathoner understands the experience. You have to train for ages, then it’s almost impossibly tough to do. You get the occasional transcendent high along the way, and when and IF you finish, the feeling is indescribable. Then you’re brain dead and exhausted for weeks, and wonder if you’ll ever be up to doing it again.
I did do the event with Barbara Levy and Nancy Turner on November 30 at Changing Hands Bookstore in Tempe, and it was a wonderful experience. There was a great crowd, very engaged and enthusiastic. I think most of the audience came to see the other two authors, expecially Nancy, whose These Is My Words and Sarah’s Quilt are both best sellers. However, I did sell a number of my books after my portion of the talk, and a lot of people heard about me for the first time. So I’m more than happy to ride on anybody’s coattails at any time.