Looking for sizzle

I was in Borders last night loaded with a $25 gift card and all I walked out of there with was a copy of “The Chipmunk Adventure” on DVD for Becky. There were a couple of books I almost bought, but I just wasn’t very excited about anything. It’s been a while since I raced into the bookstore desperate for a new book. I think the last one was Karen Olson’s DEAD OF THE DAY and before that JT Ellison’s ALL THE PRETTY GIRLS. It seems like the summer and the fall were chock full of great new releases that had me rushing to the store every week.

The other thing hampering my enjoyment at the store was stupid marketing considerations that kept popping into my head. Since I wanted my current book to have more of a thriller feel I only sought out thrillers for a while. But that didn’t last long because for the most part I don’t like thrillers. That didn’t stop me from wondering if I should be buying something that wasn’t going to help me write my current book.

Unlike most writers I know, I have to be reading in the genre I’m writing while I work on a book. It keeps me refreshed and energized and inspired. One book that I really came close to buying was Sue Grafton’s new one T FOR TRESPASS. I haven’t read her in a while and she used to be one of my favorites but I got out of the habit of buying her. This new one looks great though and I’m pretty sure I’ll be back in to get it. The book I most want to read write now is Stuart O’ Nan’s LAST NIGHT AT THE LOBSTER, but I didn’t get it because I felt like it would just make me want to write little stories of character like that which is snot what I feel like I need to be writing right now (yeah judge me, whatever). After that though I came across it in several people’s best of the year lists so I’m taking that as a sign and I’m going back to get that one as well.

But I still don’t have much on the immediate horizon I’m looking for. The Killer Year antho in January is going to be awesome and I think Laura’s book comes out in March. But I guess that’s fine because after the first of the year most of my focus is going to be on fixing the new house and maybe tinkering with the MURDER BOY play. So I’ll probably be reading mostly plays and whatever fun mystery finds I stumble across.

Anyone else having this lack of marquee books?

5 thoughts on “Looking for sizzle

  1. The O’Nan book is really great. Made me want to write a literary story myself.
    You are so funny, Bryon. I can just picture you writing O’Nanish stories until the Lippman book appears.

  2. I only get excited on trips to the used book store. There I can stumble over something I didn’t even know I wanted, which is rarely the case at Borders or B&N. If I know what I want I usually get it from Amazon.

  3. I have a $25 B&N gift card burning a hole in my pocket, too. I do want to get O’Nan’s book as well as Ha Jin’s A FREE LIFE. Neither are crime novels, but I’ve heard great things about LOBSTER and I love Ha Jin’s work and I find that reading non-crime fiction helps writing better crime fiction.

    Oh, and for anyone who’s interested, Louise Ure’s THE FAULT TREE comes out Jan. 8. I’ve read it and it’s fabulous. And it’s not too long to wait!

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