March 31st, 2013

What I’m Working on. And How.

Hey all. Gerry Boyle here. A quick post this week because I’m headed for the finish line on THE DEAD SAMARITAN, a crime novel set in Ireland. This is the collaboration I’ve mentioned before. I’m here in America (most of the time). Freelance writer and blogger Emily Westbrooks (also my daughter), is on the ground in Dublin. It’s a good team. I think it’s a good book. Hope you all get to judge sometime soon.

More on the details when it’s done (I’m superstitious about talking too much about works in progress). Today’s post is about process and this one is coming together differently than any of my other mystery novels.

Every book is different, of course. I’ve written novels in one draft, one shot, no revision at all (DAMAGED GOODS). I’ve written novels where I’ve changed villains in the rewrite (DEADLINE). I’ve written novels where a third of the original ms. has been left on the cutting room floor (BORDERLINE).

But I’ve never done one like this one, which is being written in layers. I’ve been doing some video work in my magazine job, some voice over, script writing. I’ve also been watching the video editor work his magic, weaving sound and video, splicing and dicing. It’s fascinating and fun.

photo1 e1364548697432 225x300 What Im Working on. And How.I’ve also been reading about painters and their process, layering on of paint, a final addition of light and color bringing the work to life.

And maybe some of that rubbed off because SAMARITAN is being written in a long burst of dialogue. Very little expository anything. Always moving. The dialogue and action driving the book along.

That’s layer one. Then comes blog posts and text messages (key to this one). Then some more Irish-izing of the dialogue (lots of Irish friends ready to help out there. Hello, Dublin northsiders!). Then some fleshing out of the landscape.

And voila. The complete story, hopefully seamless and smooth.

Will I write the next one like this? Apply this process to the next Jack McMorrow or Brandon Blake? Probably not. But we aren’t stamping out cookies here folks. And has this one been fun? It’s been grand.

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2 Responses to “What I’m Working on. And How.”

  1. Gerry,
    I just finished reading Damaged Goods, which I think was one of your best. I loved it, and so did my husband, who grabbed it away from me and read it first. We don’t tell each other anything about the books after we’ve read them. Okay, so now I am really looking forward to your new books because I have read all of the Jack McMorrow and Brandon Blake books. I’ve read them from cover to cover, and you never cease to amaze, with your incredible descriptions, plot twists, and great dialogue. Glad to see you posted just now. It’s a coincidence because I haven’t checked the blog in awhile but here you are. Seriously, we (as in the whole family) will be looking forward to more of your mysteries. I have to tell you I was disappointed that I was finished with Damaged Goods. That’s always the sign of a great book. Now what am I going to read? I guess I’ll have to do some writing and then wait till your new books come out. Looking forward to them.
    Ronna Lambiasi DeLoe

  2. bill says:

    Hi Gerry – can you shed some light onto what changes went into Deadline and the reasoning behind it?


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