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My Writer's Journal

Let's Blog!

I've been doing a Writer's Journal for years, but with this new website there is a way for readers to respond. Occasionally somebody actually does send in a comment, but so far none of those have had anything to do with the subject I want to discuss. For instance, in my last post I wrote about the "truth" of my novels. So what do I get in response? Questions about which is my favorite book and why, or a friend who writes about her gardening.

Hey, guys! The idea is to respond to the subject at hand. Otherwise, if you want to ask a question, or just get in touch with me, click on CONTACT above and send me an e-mail. I love hearing from you, and I will respond!

Incidentally, the response to TOO MANY BOOKS, posted a month ago, has been fantastic. The shelves are mostly empty now, and my books have gone out to fans in all parts of the country. Thank you, thank you! Read More 
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Making Stuff Up

I'm often asked if my books are true--meaning, I guess, if I've made up the "facts" or if things actually happened as I've described them. The truth is that I do a lot of research and have a rule: I don't rewrite history. But a lot of imagination goes into presenting the facts in an interesting way--through dialogue, for instance.

Sometimes the "facts" I find in books or on line don't agree. For instance, in MARY QUEEN OF SCOTS, my current project, I work with three excellent biographies, and I find that authors interpret events differently. Drives me crazy! So what do I do?

I choose the interpretation that makes the most sense to me--and also makes the best story. Read More 
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Why I Like Bad Weather

It's getting much harder to stay focused on writing. Other parts of the country may be flood-drenched and miserable, but New Mexico is sunny, the skies are sapphire blue, and although it's still cold when I take off for my walk at 6:30 AM, by noon it's warm. Fruit trees are blossoming around the neighborhood, the pots in my yard overflow with brilliant color. So who feels like working?

Not that I'm wishing for downpours or snowstorms, but a dose of bad weather once in a while is not a bad thing. I'm slogging away on MARY, QUEEN OF SCOTS, on Chapter 12 in fact, but for now it's a slow go. A little rain might help. Read More 
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