Sunday, September 15, 2013


My novel From the Ground Up is officially in the world.  Hooray!  My friend says it's in the genre of Bridget Jones or Confessions of a Shopaholic.  I should be so lucky!  Anyway, it's a tale about a Lea Lawson, a troubled young actress, who can't seem to stay out of the press or a courtroom.  When she crashes a stolen town car through the front window of Saks Fifth Avenue, her life spins out of control.  A judge sentences her to rehab on a working farm in upstate, NY.  Can the pampered movie star change her life around out of the spotlight?  She's about to find out the hard way from the ground up.

Why write a book?  

Why do people climb mountains?  Or enter triathlons?  It's a challenge.  I like writing plays and scripts.  I'm familiar with the structure and format.  Writing a novel is another animal.  It's a wonderful, freeing experience too.  Most screenplays are 90-120 pages.  They're lean.  Clean on the page.  Screenplays should contain only what the reader/characters can see and hear.  No filler.  No flowery prose.  No extra anything.  

With a novel, it's the opposite.  A novel can run over 300 pages.  What's the hurry?  It's not like there are any act breaks.   You can slow down, write what you like and get inside your characters' heads.  You can tell the reader what the characters are thinking unlike in plays and scripts.  It's liberating!  It's amazing!  It's not screenwriting!

Until it's time to rewrite and revise.   Then you pay the price for all that freedom. Revising my novel was a huge undertaking.  It took about five drafts of the entire book and some polishes here and there.  It took nearly three years to write the book.  Where screenwriting feels like dating, writing a book feels like marriage.  It's a commitment.  You have to be in it for the long haul.  It's not as much a collaborative medium as film.

As an author, you're on your own.  You may have an editor or proofreader, but basically, it's you deciding what stays on that page.  With screenwriting, you know while writing it that a million eyes will pull the script apart -- agents, directors, producers, studio executives and actors!  People will give you notes.  They'll want changes.

What else was exciting about writing a book?

It's a big digital, connected world out there now.  A writer can't afford to be a recluse anymore -- typing out manuscripts and not communicating with the outside world.  Those days are over.

Today, an author has to be a social media whiz kid -- with Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, online marketing, author profiles, and digital outlets.  Kudos to my dear friend -- and writing comrade -- Barbara Forte Abate for steering me through the digital waters of publishing.  She's had two novels published The Secret of Lies and Asleep Without Dreaming (both on Amazon).  Thanks, Babs, for all your help and support!

If you enjoy reading about love, celebrities and farming (foodies unite!), you'll enjoy this novel as your autumn read.  It's in e-book now and will be in paperback before the holidays.  Purchase and download to your Kindle, Mac, PC, iPhone... whatever device you prefer.
Happy reading!

Buy My Book now

Link to Download Kindle to your PC

Link to Download Kindle to your iPhone

Until next time. 

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