Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The Next Big Thing

My novelist-buddy Rachel Hauck tagged me for The Next Big Thing blog hop. Ten questions. Then I tag some authors, asking the same ten questions. Then they tag . . . and so on, and so on. 

Since I've got three projects going simultaneously, I'm choosing to talk about the book  flashing in the immediate foreground. And off we go:

What is the working title of your book? "Here Not Here."

Where did the idea come from for the book?  Readers of the Raleigh Harmon mystery series have often asked me to write about her early life, what it was like before her father was murdered. I was considering a prequel to "The Stones Cry Out," the first book in the series, but then my creative husband suggested something better: When did Raleigh get hooked on geology, and what if that hook came at a price?

What genre does your book fall under? Young adult mystery.

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition? As someone who doesn't watch much TV and whose movie library is still on VHS, I keep picking actresses who are now too old to play Raleigh. But. Still. I like them: Rene Russo in "Lethal Weapon 3" and Janine Turner in "Cliffhanger." 
     If only they could be cryogenically frozen.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
When 15-year-old Drew Levinson goes missing, everyone thinks she ran away - except her best friend Raleigh Harmon, who sets out to discover what really happened.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

That question feels like the cart is getting before the horse. Right now, I'm just enjoying the story.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript? Seven months. I tend to write-and-edit simultaneously, which slows down the sprint to the finish line.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
I'm inspired by some great mysteries from my youth, such as "The Wolves of Willoughby Chase," and more recent mysteries such as "The Silence of Murder" by Dandi Daley Mackall. 

Who or What inspired you to write this book?  Touch-stones. Road markers. Those elemental moments of youth where our pasts become braided with challenges and blessings and meaning. I'm fascinated by those things that happened to you that now make you, You.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest? Don't we all remember what it feels like to be fifteen, and nobody understands you? Now throw in a life-and-death situation that's going to define the rest of your days. 

Okay, that's my Ten. 

Now check out the next round of The Next Big Thing with these fabulous authors:


  1. Loved this! I'm very excited to hear about the progress of this next Raleigh book. And what an awesome idea to write about her as a teen. I love YA novels, and coming from you I know it's going to be good!

  2. CJ, that's so kind of you. Thanks so much. Hoping for a 2013 release.... Need to see a YA from you soon, too...