Friday, October 7, 2016

Coming in for a Landing…But Where’s the Rest of the Squadron?

I once told a fellow author I was going to take flying lessons as research for a book (that was never written, as it happens, because my agent didn’t find the idea glamorous enough). The fellow author’s response: “Just when we thought it was safe to go back in the air.”

I should probably point out that this comment was made in the early ’90s, when air travel was still fun.

Anyway, I’m not flying now. Not even as a passenger. By “landing,” I was referring to Creativia’s landing pages for my books. So far, only two are up and running. I’m guessing they’re doing this in alphabetical order, as the first one up was Alexander’s Empire and now we have Angels at Midnight. To check them out, just click on the links. And while you’re at it, check out my author page at their site. (They haven’t yet added my latest release, Ms. Maxwell and Son, to my bibliography.)

Angels at Midnight Complete
7

When I decided to reissue my backlist books, I had a choice to make. These books, with the exception of Chasing the Wind and Final Hours, had all been written and published in the late 1980s-early 1990s. That was a time when the most popular fiction was either historical romance (not my cup of tea) or glamorous, suspenseful contemporary romance. Today, the market is decidedly different. On one hand, I really wanted the old books to be available on a permanent basis, even if they didn’t gain many new readers. Om the other, I felt an urge to rewrite all of the old stuff, not just to make it more relevant to today’s readers, but in the case of Alexander’s Empire to satisfy my need to finally publish the story I’d wanted to write from the start.

If I were writing them today? Alexander’s Empire would still involve wealth and power–to a degree. But it would be, at its heart, the story of a man who discovers he’s not who he’s always believed himself to be, that his present life was created out of a tragedy that destroyed several lives. It would focus on his inability to trust, to love, and his search for answers.

As for Angels at Midnight, again, there would be less glamour and more of a modern “MacGuyver meets Robin Hood” story. Ashley might still be a celebrated artist, but Collin wouldn’t be an oilman’s heir. He’d be someone who was one of many cheated by a ruthless employer. He’d be more high tech than he was back in the ’80s. And there would be more fencing. Those were my favorite parts of the original.

That’s what might have been….

9 comments:

  1. That's the thing with writers- we look at the could have years later. Though we balance that of with the do I really want to rewrite this impulse.

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    1. Back then, I was working with traditional publishers, and they paid enough to insist on certain things--or so they kept telling me!

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  2. Too late Norma, it's out there now 😊 and I'm enjoying, few chapters left!

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    1. Thank you, Grace! I keep telling myself there's no going back, once the books are out there.

      Though I might update the screenplay version....

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  3. You can't go back and redo. Look what happened to the Star Wars movies.
    When you wrote them it was right for the time. But I like your new ideas.

    cheers, parsnip

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    1. It would confuse the readers and probably make my publisher rethink working with me (not that I haven't already driven more than one to run when they see me coming)!

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  4. So much has changed since then. You can't even keep up if your book is only a decade old. Love the covers, Norma. Just knowing those books are out there again must bee a nice feeling for you!

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    1. Yes, it is. Traditional publishers usually don't keep books in print for more than a limited time--four weeks for most paperback originals. I like that with Amazon, they can always be available.

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  5. The covers are great. Interesting how we change and things change. I like that you have worked with traditional and self-pub.

    I was listening to someone talk about self-pub vs traditional and he said for the one book, he made more with the self-pub because Amazon only took 30 percent, where his publisher took more.

    Fasinates me.

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