Thursday, April 26, 2012

Update From the Hill

In case anyone is interested (and I’m beginning to doubt that anyone is), the sequel to “Purity” is completed and on the market. The plan was to finish the book before my granddaughters’ first birthday so, right on schedule, I got ‘er done a matter of weeks before their second.

Apparently, I had no concept of what it was going to be like finishing a novel while simultaneously working a day job as an insurance adjuster and a night job as a publisher of books for other people.

Another complication, albeit a happy one, is that “Purity” is currently in the hands of a Hollywood executive producer who is interested in turning it into a pilot movie for a 13-episode TV series. He asked me if I could convert it to a screenplay and, of course, I said “sure!”

Now, understand, before that telephone conversation I had never even seen a TV or movie script. So I got online and downloaded scripts from movies I had seen and went to work on it – thinking that it needed to be done quickly to impress the producer. I got the whole thing completed in a week or so, and emailed it back to him. He called and told me it was “the best adaptation I have seen in a long time.” So, I had that going for me, which was nice. It seemed then that I was going to be watching my story on a big screen in no time flat.

It doesn’t work that way.

The wheels of Hollywood turn very slowly, I’ve learned. Friday, four or five months after I started packing up my flip-flops and shorts, the dude (a fantastically friendly “regular guy” by the way) called me with his verbal “notes.” There’s work to be done, particularly, cutting the script down by about 12 pages to make it the optimum length. He told me to not get in a hurry, and do it right. Time now to actually read those scripts I downloaded, it appears.

Meanwhile, I finished this sequel and put it up on the market and am wondering if I made a poor choice in naming it “unrighteous god.” Some people I’ve spoken with about it seem reluctant to read the book, perhaps fearing that as a result of doing so they’ll be cast into the fires of Hell or, at the very least, struck by lightning. I have to explain to them that the title is not an editorial, but rather a quote from the antagonist in the book. That doesn’t seem to make them feel any more at ease. They still step back a few feet while we’re talking and I catch them, every once-in-a-while, glancing up toward the clear blue sky…nervously.

In short, the story isn’t an indoctrination into some unholy cult, as some have apparently gleaned from the title. It’s about a northwest Arkansas private investigator, trying to catch a serial killer who is, like most serial killers, just a little on the whacky side.

If it’s any comfort, there have been a few people who have already read the book and, as far as I know, none of them have burst into flames. For those not afraid to live on the edge, the paperback is available at, and other links are provided on my website:

Next up: We’re gonna try our hand at stage plays. Got an idea after seeing “Book of Days” at the Arts Center of the Ozarks, and anxious to get started on it. So, if you’re a community theater director, gimme a call!

Meantime, Fan, keep those beach clothes handy.