I like traditional book signings or an event where I talk to a crowd for a half hour or so, explaining the characters in my series and why I write about them.
Many times, aspiring authors attend and are interested in learning how to get published. Their questions provide a chance for good dialogue.
But there are only so many brick and mortar bookshops or other venues within a reasonable distance to make these ventures economically sound.
I also like virtual book tours because they’re almost as interactive. I’m sure I shouldn’t say this, but I hate Internet marketing and self-promotion on Facebook, Twitter, and similar sites. I’m not a computer guy. Before I bought a PC, I hadn’t worked on a computer since they were seven feet tall.
What is a typical writing day like for you?
I begin all my books or stories the old-fashioned way—with a lined pad and a purloined motel ballpoint pen. After spending time in a wingback chair writing, I’ll do a first edit and red-line any corrections, deletions or additions. Then I transpose everything to a Word document and proofread it again. My wife and sister are my second echelon editors, so I print a copy and let them go at it.
People ask if I outline a story before I begin writing. I haven’t yet. All that preliminary organization is too much like work.
Most of my stuff is based on incidents I’m familiar with from my years in the police department. I get an idea and just go with it. The only time I keep notes is if a timeline is crucial to the story. Then, I’ll keep track of the days and the hours.
What are some ways that you like to relax?
The quickest infusion of relaxation comes with my absence on the Internet. All the Facebook writer’s/reader’s group emails and Twitter business takes up lots of time and creates pressure. When my wife and I travel, I sometimes take a laptop, but rarely do any usual business.
Travel is our prominent form of entertainment, but we’re not “lay on the beach and read” kind of people. Occasionally, we need a few days rest after a typical vacation.