Monday, January 25, 2010

Describe Your Work In Progress

Right now I've got two works in progress. One's a children's lesson book about my deaf dog, Rascal. The other is a thriller on aging targeted for the Boomer generation.

What about you? Tell us briefly about your work or works in progress in the comment section.



  1. Right now I'm halfway thru the second book in my Peri Minneopa mystery series. In Freezer Burn, she had to figure out how a severed hand got into her client's freezer. In the new one, she's dealing with a group of rich, bored women who may or may not have an Assassins R Us business on the side. And, of course, every Wednesday, I must come up with 600 witty words about my family, my home, and/or my life for the newspaper column.
    Words - I can't get away from 'em.

  2. I'm about to embark on a WIP - a teen version to my Overcoming Obstacles with SPUNK! So first will be a bit of research...

  3. Rewriting an ms. i cannot find. It's the story of one of my minor characters from my forthcoming book Incendiary.

  4. Writing the second book in the Haunted Guesthouse Mystery series (the first, NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEED, is due June 1 from Berkley Prime Crime). About 75 pages, and it's going well. I think.

  5. Chris,
    That's terrible you lost your ms and have to start over. I hope you weren't too far along with it.

    Morgan Mandel

  6. I have several works in progress. I am putting finishing touches on a novel entitled TANGLED about weird relationships. I am also going on edit number two for THE SNARE OF A STRANGE WOMAN about the trap of infidelity and the lie that it is. Lastly, I'm working on ALWAYS THE BRIDE, which is more of my testimony.

  7. Ouch, Chris. The worst I've lost is 10 chapters of a book, and that hurt.

    What am I working on? As usual, a bunch at once...

    Mating Season (book two of Xxan series for LooseId)- When a futuristic military man picks up a woman at the base club, he doesn't know she's a Xxan-human crossbred...or that she's the fleet admiral's goddaughter. Yeah, that gets interesting, before the end.

    Hunter's Tales (book 4 of Night Warriors series for Phaze)- In between the two sections of the first Night Warriors book, there was 24 years of silence with just hints of what happened in Hunter range. Stephen and Colin married. Laura joined the household as their personal doctor. But what really happened during the years they were searching for Erin? Hunter range is stock full of surprising secrets and lies.

    Double Image (book 4 of Kegin series for Phaze)- There are two sets of identical adult re-breds on Kegin. When an enemy kidnaps the wrong Keen princess, they get one of the twin Braedens in the bargain. In the meantime, the other Braeden brother has found and lost the woman of his dreams in a single night...and said enemies aren't done with the princess they're after. Sometimes, being identical is not all it's cracked up to be.

    Another Man's Mate (book 3 of Kielan series for Logical-Lust)- All it takes is close quarters and high emotions to find a mate or bond on Kielan. Unfortunately, Vahlree has given up hopes of any man willingly choosing to mate with her...which means the "high emotions" Biryn finds her with amount to her in a sordid little affair with another man. Oops.

    Playing With Fire (book 2 of Grellan War series for Under The Moon)- When Julien went to Earth, Jason/Firebrand was left behind, but someone else's need to escape Suraden is stronger than his. Worse even than losing his place in line is ending up captured by the Calante and charged as a traitor to the state. Ironically, his interrogator may prove his only hope.


  8. Anonymous8:15 AM

    My current WIP is about a female sheriff's deputy in a rural community trying to solve the death of her father's lifelong best friend. Complications include an attractive out-of-town researcher, higher ups and community leaders who seem to be obstructing the investigation.

    It's a departure for me as it is a mystery (my first two novels were genre romances). I'm determined though to not make it a police procedural but rather make it more about the relationships and complications of policing friends and neighbors in small tight-knit communities.

  9. I have 3 -- a sequel to Geography of Murder which is about 50K in, a dragon shapeshifter fantasy that is about 10K and I'm researching a novel about a female impersonator who works in the underground speakeasies of 1920s Los Angeles. That would be my first ever historical novel.

  10. I'm sorry to hear about your need to rewrite, Chris. There's nothing worse than losing your work.

    I'm working on a middle grade novel about a young orphan girl who goes to live with her spinister aunt. The girl decides she must figure out why the aunt is so unhappy and fix it.


  11. Finishing another rewrite on Red SKY, my International Sailing Thriller set in the fabulous British Virgin Islands--smugglers-film makers--drugs--murder--kidnapping!!

    Also, if you've seen the film Rape of Europa or read Monumnents Men, you can deduce what my new PI novel is about.

  12. Wow, we are busy! I'm not the only one with more than one project. Let's hear from more writers.

    Morgan Mandel

  13. Finishing and reworking "A Rum Mystery." It's a Golden Age mystery set on the island of Antigua with amateur sleuth Alice Winthrope. It's taken me more than month of Sundays to do this with health and family issues. And, yes, I've been to Antigua many times (and I'm Soooo lucky). Even done a mystery writing workshop at the local (and only) bookstore in St. John's, the capitol of Antigua. Also interviewed a former deputy police commissioner, who came on the force when it was called the Leeward Island Royal Police Force.

    He told me that he was the first "coloured" constable to be promoted in the Leewards.

    Best part of all this has been the research, listening and learning from locals.

    Pat Harrington, with
    Amateur sleuths Bridget O'Hern, and Alice Winthrope.
    Short Mystery Fiction Society
    Derringer Recipient for "Secondhand Shoe".

  14. Right now I'm working on a story about a couple who used to be brother-and-sister-in-law who fall in love. The family is not pleased! It makes for some interesting external conflict.

  15. Debra,

    Sounds a little like one I released in Dec. The heroine falls for her dead fiancee's brother. He's been dead 2 years, by that point.


  16. Being that I became a victim of this sad economy yesterday and my job of 12 years was eliminated, I'm revamping my website and looking for some potential writing jobs.

  17. To avoid writer's block, I have at this moment no less than 6 (yes, SIX!) WiPs 'on the back boiler: every time I run into an obstacle, I switch yarn ... so far, so good, it seems to be working LOL!! :)
    One childrens' story (pirate-themed, sequel to an earlier book, part of a projected series)
    Political thriller. Eco-disaster. Historical fantasy. WW2 naval story. Irish myth/mystery/family saga/romance (yes, a real "cross-genre" offering!)Another political thriller (theme: uncontrolled immigration, UK setting.) Couple of plays, one in the form of a 'rock opera' with original music & lyrics also penned by yours truly ...

  18. I didn't know you had a dog. He's so cute!

    I have 3 novels in progress but I'm concentrating on one.

    I also have a few picture books in progress.

    My hands are full!

  19. I'm writing a nonfiction on a teacher whose philosophy of teaching is changing the way teachers teach. And thinking about and researching a novel.

    Straight From Hel

  20. I'm always amazed by writers who can work on more than one book at once! Here's there's such a range of projects, too. Really impressive.

    I never say a word about a WIP until 'the end' is written on a first draft--like try not to even give away the title--but my *submission* in progress is about a suicide in a small town and a crime that's been concealed for more than two decades...

  21. My WIP is about a young woman who remembers nothing about her previous life, but knows she's dead and inhabiting a body originally not her own. She's a Traveler, a psychic vampire with bigger issues than even that, though she's not sure what they are. Travelers are the guardians of the realm between the living and the afterlife in the world known as The Dark.

    Something's coming to challenge everything the dead and undead think they know, to challenge the Dark Law itself and risk exposure of this hidden world to human society. It's the heroine and her hero sidekick's job to maintain the status quo, even though she herself is uncertain that she should.

  22. I just finished the first draft of a humorous memoir,A Dead Tomato Plant and a Paycheck. I describe it as The Devil Wears Prada meets Erma Bombeck. The basis of the book is a collection of columns I wrote for a newspaper when my children were young and our house was a lot like Comedy Central.

  23. I'm working on the third book in my Roman mystery series, featuring Pliny the Younger. The second book, The Blood of Caesar, was named one of the 5 Best Mysteries of 2008 by Library Journal, so my publisher wants the next book ASAP.

  24. I am working on a historical fantasy about a Viking in the tenth century. Gunther is the son of weapon maker who worships the famous Eric the Red and signs up to become of his crew. He has many adventures which include falling in love with Aine, a Celtic woman, going to the New World (America) and going on a dragon hunt These are just a few of his adventures.

  25. I'm drafting the sequel to my mystery BLEEDER. The story features a minor character from the first book, Latina insurance agent Selena de la Cruz, as the protagonist. Haunted by her brother's death from drugs and the abrupt end of her DEA career, Selena is compelled to join former DEA colleagues in the hunt for a dealer she helped imprison who is out of jail and systematically killing everyone who ever crossed him. Her name appears last on his 'hit list', written in a Catholic church's All Souls' Day "Book of the Deceased." It is tentatively called "Viper."

  26. I'm about two-thirds of the way through A SPORTING MURDER, the fifth Greg McKenzie mystery. It's about an effort by supporters of the Nashville Predators NHL hockey team out to discourage a group that wants to bring NBA basketball to town. There are unsavory doings going on.

  27. I'm a little over 1/3 done with the second Rabbi Aviva Cohen mystery, UNLEAVENED DEAD. In the first, CHANUKAH GUILT, Aviva looks into the circumstances surrounding the apparent suicide of a young woman she had been counseling. In the second, she is suspicious that a rabbi she knows is responsible for the seemingly accidental deaths of a couple who had information that could have lost him his new job. At the same time, she is looking for evidence that will exonerate her niece's partner from allegations she was involved in the hit-and-run death of a new boss who had downsized her. The books are not as grim as they sound - they're cozy mysteries and contain a lot of humor.

    You can read reviews of CG and excerpts from UD at

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  29. I'm working on the 19th book in my Daisy Dalrymple series. This time, Alec's investigating a triple murder, while Daisy gets mixed up in what appears to be a separate killing. Yes, I said "appears to be"!

    It's now 12 days overdue. Thank goodness for an understanding editor. I promised it to him before Left Coast Crime. He's going to be there, and I want to be able to look him in the face.

  30. Anonymous11:16 PM

    I'd love to read your story about Rascal sometime, Morgan!

    Currently, I've been working on personal branding, painting a portrait, and improving my writing, at least until a couple of projects that are up in the air decide to solidify into paying contracts...

  31. I'm working on an Action Mystery novel. Never heard of that genre? That's because I invented it. The book is filled with action, but not the kind you normally think of in a Thriller. The driving force is the Mystery element, but the protag, Tall Chambers, has many obstacles to overcome to solve it.

  32. I am working on a six-installment short story eBook series for teen-aged reluctant readers (formerly known as Hi-Lo books).

    Twelve authors are involved in this project, and the "Electric Shorts" are put out once a month. They age groups for these YA shorts range from middle school through high school. Many of us were assigned a theme, and mine was gardening.

    Knowing it would be insane to try to use traditional gardening to motivate high school kids to read, I made The Olive Branch Garden Center a place where street kids in trouble with the law could work off community service hours, and receive the counseling they need.

    The kids are walking back from a day of work when they stumble across a dead prostitute. They decide to work together to find who killed her.

    It's called "Death of a Garden Hoe" (March, 2011), The subsequent stories are "Digging up Dirt" (April), "Kill me Over the Garden Gate" (May), "You say Tomahto and I say you're Dead" (June), "Hosta la Vista, Baby!" (July), and "Everything's Coming up Roses"(August).

    They are 99 cents on OmniLit, Smashwords, Amazon, and B & N. Pick one up and take a peek:

  33. Funny how plans change. I finished my first historical, a novella called Placing Out, and a novel called Shadow and Smoke that is with my agent. I've just finished the first draft of another historical called Blood and Ice, set in New York in 1888.

    Being in an historical mode, I've started yet another one, this one in mid-1800s about a New York boy who becomes a cowboy and rustler.


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