Thursday, May 24, 2007

Two big books on the horizon...

I’ve been listening to Christmas music all week. Eartha Kitt cooing Santa Baby, Bony M singing Feliz Navidad, Dolly Parton doing her version of I’ll be Home for Christmas. You see, I’m writing, and that means everything (and everyone) takes a back seat to the creative side of my brain. I’m currently working on a chapter with an 80 year old man who listens to Christmas music all year long and it helps when I actually listen to Christmas music, as does the space heater at my feet, because this chapter is set during the month of August.

It sometimes worries me, though, this tendency to lean towards eccentricity when I'm writing (see above) and being reclusive (I haven’t left the house in days) and asking my family to deal with my *cough* mildly temperamental nature (do NOT touch the chapters spread out across the floor, or the charts pinned to the wall, or the notes littering my desk outlining my characters and which one should get sick and/or possibly die to give the story the best possible impact).

As an author running on little sleep,
I’ve been wondering lately if these tendencies will get better or worse
with age, if they lean toward what’s considered ‘normal’ for the creative process, or if I'm genetically predisposed to some sort of mental madness I’m not aware of that runs in my family?

Then, the other day, I read a post on John Elder Robison’s blog titled 'A history of madness in the family' that made me feel much better (just poking a little fun, John).

Look Me in the Eye, John’s debut, will be out in September. Even more interesting, my friend Patricia Wood’s debut Lottery is scheduled for release in August. John’s book is about his life with Asperger’s. Pat’s is a moving story about a cognitively challenged man with an IQ of 76 who wins $14 million in the lottery. John posted a spot-on review for Lottery on his blog titled 'Life at the other end of the IQ range' and Pat did the same for Look Me in the Eye with a post titled 'Look Me in the Eye got me in the heart'.

Better yet, both of these books are creating almost tsunami-like waves in the publishing industry (look out BEA) and have done so from the first day they were respectively purchased. They are being talked about as two of the fall’s 'big books' and I think everyone's right -- they're both going to be huge bestsellers, so if you haven’t already, pre-order a copy of each right now. You won't want to miss either one!

P.S. I have NO IDEA why my links aren't working on this post!! Blogger is making me crazy so I've given up trying to fix them. Here's Pat's URL for her blog - - and here's John's - (Sorry everyone!)


N-Dillon from Colorado said...

I normally lurk but had to comment when I read this post.

I found each of these book covers intriguing and after visiting the author's blogs I now wish I had their books in hand. How wonderful that you have pointed them out to your blog lurkers and commenters. Thank you.

Norma Dillon (Colorado)

ORION said...

Much god dag and aloha Holly!
We have such an amazing cyberspace writing community!

Kyla-dale said...

I'm going to go broke buying all the books yer recommending (just kidding).

These sound great.
I'm assuming 'big book' means NYT list big and not big in size?
*tee hee*

Therese said...

I love "Santa Baby." :)

I've been writing a scene that's set in Chicago in February, so it's a relief to look up and discover lush green leaves outside my window.

And a relief that my debut isn't competing with these terrific books. Maybe I'll have late winter's book buyers all to myself! :)

wordman17 said...

I have read some advance blog reviews for Lottery -- followed commenters from your blog over to Ms. Woods' and from there on to others. Sounds interesting.

It will also be interesting to see if you're right (that both of them become best selling books)

leanne in chicago said...

I'm a big reader (I read 4-5 books/week) and plan to add these to my late summer and early fall list. Thanx for posting about them!*smile*

Leanne D.

Holly Kennedy said...

Norma -- Welcome from those dark lurking shadows! I hope you come visit again :)

ORION -- Don't we, though?

Kyla-dale -- Yup, you got it right. BIG as in making a massive impact on bestselling lists everywhere :)

Therese -- Santa Baby is one of my all time favorites, too. And I agree. I wouldn't want to compete with either of these books. When's your US pub date for Souvenir again?

Wordman17 -- Let's revisit this post before Christmas and see how they do, ok?

Leanne -- 4-5 books per week? Wow. I wish I could fit in reading that many. My TBR pile has grown into THREE TBR piles that are leaning against one another!!

Demon Hunter said...

Thanks, Holly. I cannot wait to read both books. I work with the Mentally Challenged/Autistic populations, plus I was a counselor at Mental Health.

Melissa Marsh said...

Those books both look excellent.

No, you're not suffering from some weird mental illness. I do the same thing at my house. The only problem is that when my husband cleans, he'll sweep all my notes and paperwork into one pile and place it all on my desk. I can never FIND anything after that. Drives me mad! The kids, however, have learned not to touch any of it. Now I just have to train hubby. ;-)

I have to get out of the house once in awhile or I go mad - but there have been some weekends where I barely step foot outside (usually during the winter).

Have a great weekend, Holly!

Georgia D said...

My brother's son was diagnosed with Asperger's 6 yrs ago. He's the sweetest kid who's had a really really tough time fitting in at school, etc.

Thank you for telling me about this book from John. I plan to buy it the moment it comes out :-)

Mia King said...

I think this the perfect pairing, truly - and I also think these are the perfect books to uplevel the publishing community just a notch - intelligent, poignant, well-written books (fiction and nonfiction - how perfect is that) that tap into our humanity.

Great post, Holly - have a terrific weekend!

Heidi the Hick said...

Holly, I don't know if I've ever mentioned this, but your work ethic inspires me! I have two of your novels now and I'm sure I couldn't have whipped out two (excellent!) novels that close together! My first one took 7 years and it's garbage!

I'm glad you described your writing process because now I feel much better about my messy desk and my playing over and over of the Guns N Roses album and the pulling of faces in the mirror. It's like Method writing. OK!

And To Be Read pile is going to be huge in a few months...

John Elder Robison said...

I am always touched by other people's response to my writing efforts. This online community is a remarkable thing, indeed.

Stop by my blog, where I have reported upon the recent attack at my sister-in-law's house.

Vicki-in-Phoenix said...

I'm so backwards *lol*
I read Penny Tree two weeks ago and THEN went back and read your first novel, Tin Box.

That Heidi girl is right. You turned out 2 fantastic stories in a relatively short time!! And although I loved Tin Box I saw some definite growth in your overall writing in Penny Tree (no offense intended).

I cannot wait for Silver Compass, and now that I've found out you have a blog *SMILE* I'll be paying close attention to the books your recomending (thanks :--)

Kim Stagliano said...

Tell me you don't write murder mysteries, OK? LOL! "So I'm holding this knife over my husbands head while he sleeps..." I gather you're a "method actor" writer? I think that's a very cool way to get inside your characters.

Pat and John - yes, two great books. From this I know. August and September will be fun months!

Larramie said...

Ever since Pat wrote a guest post at The Debuante Ball, I've been counting the days until Lottery debuts. Her post alone left me wordless, whatever will be the novel's effect?

Absolutely amazing the talent that surrounds us....*sigh*

Patry Francis said...

It always makes me feel so much better to hear that I'm not the only eccentric writer out there.

I mainly stopped by to tell you how much I LOVED The Penny Tree. Annie is such a marvelous character I hated to say goodbye to her.

So write on. Sing Santa Baby and bask in that August heat--whatever it takes. Your fans are waiting.

Holly Kennedy said...

Demon hunter - what a challenge you must face every day. I have great respect for people who work in your profession :)

Wow, Melissa, I'd choke my husband if he messed up my desk. Matter of fact, he usually walks a WIDE circle around any mess he finds down there!

Georgia d - until recently, I had no idea how many children are diagnosed with Asperger's. Sad stuff.

Mia - I couldn't agree more!

Heidi -- you're a sweetheart. Yup, the creative process often involves the oddest processes, doesn't it? Music is a must, though!!

Holly Kennedy said...

John -- I loved your racoon story!

Vicki -- nice to have you pop by. I hope you'll do so again.

Kim -- Amazing what a writer does for authenticity, huh?

Larramie - It really is a great book. You will love it.

Patry -- What a nice comment!
Thank you. You made my day :)