Posts Tagged ‘Their Wildest Dreams’

Saturday Morning Coffee

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September 23rd, 2017 Posted 9:22 am

Maybe because we’ve been socked in on Cape Cod by the remnants of Jose – while the rest of the country is nice and sunny – but I woke up this morning thinking of the desert. The Sonoran desert, specifically. I fell in love with Arizona during the writing of THEIR WILDEST DREAMS. I think it’s the first book where I broadened some of the humor a little bit – so in two ways at least it’s a precursor to Chet and Bernie. No canine narrator in THEIR WILDEST DREAMS. The POV is multiple third-person close, which can sometimes be pretty hackish, but I think not in this case. In desperate financial straits, Mackie, the main character and a former dancer, tries working in a strip club. I got an email from a stripper telling me the thoughts in Mackie’s head while performing were just like hers. A stroke of luck. How could I ever have researched something like that? (Don’t even go there.)

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What’s In A Name?

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August 16th, 2017 Posted 8:19 am

Mrs. Publicist: Uh-oh. Yesterday was the fifteenth, our normal spot for What’s In A Name, where Spence discusses a character name from one of his books. How about we do it today, flexibility being the spice of life?

Spencer Quinn: I’m all for that, especially since flexibility seems like a dying trait in our land these days. How about we do LeAnne Hogan, main character in THE RIGHT SIDE?

Mrs. P: Go for it!

SQ: Some names I can’t write at all, so I have to wait for the right name to come along, and her name was a real blessing. LeAnne Hogan is not a highfalutin name, but neither is it trailer trash. There’s no-nonsense mixed with a bit of the exotic, even some musicality, which really helped me define the character. (In a book I wrote called THEIR WILDEST DREAMS, there’s a teenager named Lianne – she helpfully wrote much of her scenes herself.) As for Hogan, it’s Irish, but that wasn’t the point. I was thinking of those Navajo hogans, so enduring, of the earth itself. Also LeAnne comes from that part of the country. The reader doesn’t need to know any of this, of course, but her name became part of the spirit of the book.

Mrs. P: Does that happen with a character name in every story?

SQ: I – and I’m sure lots of other writers – wish.

Mrs. P: Thanks, Spence! See you next month for another edition of What’s In a Name!

TRS Harlan Coben quote

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What’s In A Name?

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December 16th, 2016 Posted 8:33 am

Mrs. Publicist: Uh-oh. Yesterday was the fifteenth, our normal spot for What’as In A Name, where Spence discusses a character name from the Chet and Bernie series. How about we do it today, flexibility being the spice of life?

Spencer Quinn: Um. Well, just in case curveballs are the spice of life, how about we discuss a character name from THE RIGHT SIDE, since we revealed the cover this week?

Mrs. P: Go for it!

SQ: Let’s start with LeAnne Hogan, the main character. Some names I can’t write at all, but LeAnne’s at the other end of the spectrum. It’s not a highfalutin name, but not trailer trash either. There’s no-nonsense mixed with a bit of the exotic, even some musicality, which really helped me define the character. (In a book I wrote called THEIR WILDEST DREAMS, there’s a teenager named Lianne – she helpfully wrote much of herself.) As for Hogan, it’s Irish, but that wasn’t the point. I was thinking of the those Navajo hogans, so enduring, of the earth itself. Also LeAnne comes from that part of the country. The reader doesn’t need to know any of this, of course, but her name becomes part of the spirit of the book.

Mrs. P: Does that happen with a character name in every story?

SQ: I – and I’m sure lots of other writers – wish.

Mrs. P: Thanks, Spence! See you next … year! – for another edition of What’s In a Name!

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Story Structure 2

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October 29th, 2009 Posted 7:52 am

Admin’s belief when it comes to story structure and story-telling in general is this: keep the writer out of the limelight. The problem for Admin with metafiction is that the subtext is often the cleverness of the writer. Admin’s old fashioned that way, was brought up differently. On the other hand, he knows a bit about open, ambiguous endings. Some examples? Oblivion and End of Story, by Peter Abrahams. (Some meta stuff even gets snuck into End of Story, also into Their Wildest Dreams.)

But enough of this! Tomorrow – back to fun!

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