Hi, everyone. Thank you for checking in on the website and Facebook. I’m so glad to have you as readers and fans because, as I’ve said before, what would a writer be without readers. Unread, is what! So thank you again.
I realize that in the course of a year I’ve written over a thousand pages. That includes THE FIVE, THE HUNTER FROM THE WOODS, and THE PROVIDENCE RIDER. Way over a thousand pages, really. At this point I have about another hundred pages to go on RIDER, so this book should be finished pretty soon. I think you’ll find it’s very different from MISTER SLAUGHTER and from the other episodes in Matthew’s ongoing career, but my plan was always to make each book “different”, so there you have it.
I wanted to talk a little bit about THE FIVE and why I wrote it. I’ve always loved music, of course—as you might be able to tell from the podcasts—but I was sitting in a California Pizza Kitchen restaurant one day for lunch and I heard a song being played through the sound system. As I listened, I realized…that song is speaking to me. There were things going on in my life at that time that this particular song seemed to be zeroing in on. I thought…wow, this is for me. This is speaking to me in a way that possibly no one else in the restaurant could understand. That song was “Bittersweet Symphony” by The Verve.
So I started thinking…what is it about music that touches a person? And why suddenly can you hear a song and believe it is speaking, for some mystic reason, directly to you? I don’t know the answers to those questions, but I began framing THE FIVE right there in the CPK. A band down on its luck, having suffered many hardships, struggling from one gig to another trying to make ends meet…and suddenly they are part of a larger picture they can’t understand, but they are presented with an opportunity and a path they come to feel they need to follow.
I hope THE FIVE finds a large readership. I do believe it’s the best book I’ve ever written, because it has so much of “me” in it. Not to sound big-headed about that, but THE FIVE was written from a very personal place. So I do hope the emotions and passion in it—and my love for music—translate well to other people.
Let me also talk a little bit about RIDER. Wow, what a journey this has been from SPEAKS THE NIGHTBIRD! In RIDER, we leave a cold and snowy New York for a trip to a mysterious island in the Bermudas, where Matthew meets…
Yes, you got it. Matthew meets Professor Fell, face to…face?
I will tell you that Professor Fell has summoned—another word for ‘kidnapped’—Matthew for the purpose of solving a problem. The professor needs, as he puts it, a ‘providence rider’—a scout, to seek out a trail—so in essence Matthew is the providence rider of the title, working for Professor Fell among a conference of very colorful and deadly criminals.
The next book I’m working on?
It’s going to be a big science fiction/horror novel. I’ve been convinced that readers are eager for my return to doing some kind of contemporary ‘horror’ novel, but I want it to be big and different and have a worldwide scale. I want it to have meaning beyond being a simple scarefest or pot of gore. So…I’ve come up with the idea and the theme and I’ll begin work on that in October. Well…as you can tell, I’ve already started work on it, putting the characters and the scenes together. But the actual writing will begin in October.
After that, Matthew returns. That next book is put together—mostly—and takes place in the hot and swampy Carolina colony in the summer. So get your tarsoap ready to keep the mosquitoes off, make sure your torch is burning bright, and beware the creature that—
Teasers are such a bitch, aren’t they? Heh.
I do have a lot more work to do. As I’ve said before, I write books I want to read. I am blessed that others want to read them too, and get something from them. I have been really blessed to know that many readers feel connected to me through my work, not only in the States but around the world, and so we come back to the idea of a work of ideas speaking to someone, giving them a message or a pat on the back or a word of encouragement as well as—hopefully—a good story to be enjoyed.
There are changes in the works regarding the website and my Facebook page. I’m going to become more involved with both. All praise, of course, goes to Hunter Goatley for keeping things going and for being such a vital presence in my career. Also…for being such an excellent friend. Hunter has really gone the distance for me, and every day he shows his value as a cheerleader and supporter of my work. Thank you, Hunter!
So there are many new things coming, as well as some changes and some surprises. We’ll have some new videos coming up soon and some other cool stuff. Please keep checking back in to see what’s going on.
It’s almost summer! Time to put on the shades, because the future is awesomely bright!
Take care, everyone, and happy reading!