The Next Big Thing

Last week Tim Lebbon (have you listened to our podcast yet???) tagged me in his "The Next Big Thing" blog post thingy. It’s an ongoing process where one writer answers a series of questions (see below!), and then tags 5 others writers (see below the below!) who get to do it all again the following week. Sounds like fun, right? So here's the answers to these questions about the upcoming novel I co-authored with David B. Silva (below those questions, the names of five hapless writers who must continue this blog chain or else they'll be hit by a bus ... or something less extreme.)

1) What is the title of your next book?

Walk the Sky.

2) Where did the idea come from for the book?

Back in high school I wrote a weird western short story called "The Cactus." It was accepted for some weird western zine, which ended up folding before my story was published. So I set the story aside and sort of forgot about it while at the same time I didn't. I always knew I wanted to come back to it, but to do so much more. Then, when the opportunity came to do a collaboration with Dave Silva, I asked him if he was interested in writing a weird western and he said sure.

3) What genre does your book fall under?


4) What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?

Hard to say, as the book isn't even out yet and nobody knows who these characters are. But I think Daniel Day-Lewis would be good for one character, and maybe Jeremy Renner for another character.

5) What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Two men, on a run from a posse set to kill them, come across a young mute boy in the middle of the desert ... a boy who draws the letters DED into the dirt when asked about the nearest town.

6) Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

It's a short novel, almost 40,000 words, so it wouldn't really be worth my agent's time to try to shop it around. And quite honestly, I don't have much interest in working with traditional publishers these days. It will, however, be published by a small press publisher as a limited edition hardcover. Then, awhile later, Dave and I will release paperback and digital versions.

7) How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?

Over a year, which is strange because the book is so short. But we both took our time, sending chapters back and forth while working on other projects, and are both pleased with how it turned out.

8) What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

Not many weird westerns out there, which is one of the reasons I wanted to write this book, but notable weird westerns include Dead in the West by Joe Lansdale and, of course, Stephen King's Dark Tower saga has elements of western and horror.

9) Who or what inspired you to write this book?

I don't want to speak for Dave, but I wanted to work in a genre that hasn't been overdone quite yet.

10) What else about the book might pique the reader's interest?

It's great. Like, really, really, really great. And hey, there's an excerpt of Walk the Sky in my and Dave's most recent ebook At the Meade Bed & Breakfast (there's also a special giveaway contest!).

Now, I'm passing on the torch(es?) to these five awesome writers. Be sure to check out their blogs next Wednesday to see what they've been working on. And hey, buy some of their books while you're at it!