Stephen White - Alan Gregory discussion

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Alan Gregory Books > The Siege (2009)

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message 1: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (last edited Apr 04, 2010 10:14AM) (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
The Siege by Stephen White
The Siege by Stephen White, book 17 in the Alan Gregory series.


message 2: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
I haven't read The Siege yet. I'm waiting for my turn at borrowing a copy from the Boulder Public Library. While waiting, I've caught up on some of the later books in the series reading Kill Me, Dry Ice and Dead Time - and now creating this group!

I've tried to get everything set up here for devoted fans, but I really don't want to be doing all the posting. Please invite your friends! I'm new to Goodreads - just joined in June so I don't have a lot of contacts - I'm just hoping people will find this group and enjoy having a place to discuss the Alan Gregory series.

Please check out the Polls I've added to this group and feel free to create your own! Welcome Everyone!


message 3: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Well, I got my copy from the library some time ago but after I found out it's not set in Boulder, Colorado and Alan Gregory plays even less of a role than he did in Kill Me, I Kinda put it aside and read some other books. But I've started again :-) we'll see how far I get before I have to return it to the library.


message 4: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
So this book has no chapters - just sections where it tells you the date, time of day, and then either characters name or setting (Sam, Dee and Poe, New Haven). The book opens with a really great New Haven Scene set on April 19th, Saturday Midday. Then after that opening scene readers are taken back to Thursday April 17th to see what Sam, Dee and Poe are up to - these scenes were where my interest got lost. But on page 72 it's Saturday Midday again - I'm back where the story started - things are picking up and my interest is back!


message 5: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
I'm currently on page 130. I think the first mention of Alan Gregory was on page 119.


message 6: by Kim (new)

Kim | 7 comments S. White seems to be trying out some new characters with this book and I was a little disappointed initially. I was sort of looking forward to the Alan/Sam give and take and wanting to know how Alan and Lauren were getting on. I've been a little rattled since the problems in..Dry Ice (right?). But this novel is good in its own right, if a little confusing at first. S. White's research and the thought he puts into his novels always make them worthwhile. At times I find I rush through them - the thriller element - but than miss out on just the pleasant interplay between characters and lovely descriptive narrative, especially so when S. White is describing those lovely Rocky Mountains and ecentric Boulderites. Unfortunately none of that to miss in this book. I can understand S. White's desire to expand this list of characters and I have enjoyed his excursions out of CO, but I hope the old bunch is back soon.


message 7: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Kim - glad you joined the group :-) Now I don't have to be talking just to myself. Have you finished the book? I also have to wonder how Alan and Lauren are doing - they were having marital problems in Dry Ice and then they were apart during Dead Time so nothing was really resolved. Stephen White's books give readers a lot to think about and I love living in the setting where most of the stories take place.


message 8: by Kim (new)

Kim | 7 comments Dustin, have you visited White's website? http://www.authorstephenwhite.com/
There are some nice photos that connect with the books and an interesting interview. You'll probably do well at the trivia game. I did about as well as someone who's never read a single book. Very disappointing for me. I like you idea of writing down quotes you like. There's a comment of Sam's from (I think) Manner of Death where he talks about there always being at least 1 french fry at the bottom of the fast food bag..of course he expresses it so well, which I can't recall correctly..but ever since I read it I think of Sam everytime I get fries, and I always check the bottom of the bag. The theory is about 99.9% correct in my experience.


message 9: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Yes! Stephen's site is great and I have enjoyed that photo gallery :-) I love the pics of places mentioned paired with passages from different books. You're right - I did take one quiz and got 100% but to be fair, I took the quiz right after finishing the book - I think it was Dry Ice. I haven't read Manner of Death yet.


message 10: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
I'm only on page 201 and my book is due at the library tomorrow! As Stephen White's books are very popular, the Boulder Public Library has several copies but also several holds on those copies - I'm afraid to give it back but I'm not a very fast reader so I may not be able to finish it - we'll see. Please use *SPOILER ALERT* as needed :-)


message 11: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Although Alan Gregory is my favorite character, Sam Purdy really is a great character too.

Some favorite quotes/passages from The Siege so far:

"At least one helicopter was in the air. Media or law enforcement chopper? I couldn't tell. I would have bet media. They have more resources." (p. 158)

Simon had said, "The guy thinks he's a hipster, Dad. But he's just an old poser." (p. 162)

"Darn", she said. "I was just starting to convince my mother that New Haven is safe." (p. 164)

"I had been dreading this day since since the moment I learned I'd been suspended from the Boulder Police Department. Here it was, the day that 'broke' became more than theoretical. Damn me. Damn suspension.
Damn economy. Damn credit default swaps. Damn arrogant politicians.
I really never thought I'd see the day that I was watching my middle-class identity disappearing in the rearview mirror." (p.172)

"As his father I would not, I could not, volunteer to sacrifice him for the greater good.
Was that selfish of me?
Yes. Of course it was." (p.181)



message 12: by Benna (new)

Benna Hindle  (havetoread) | 17 comments Kim wrote: "S. White seems to be trying out some new characters with this book and I was a little disappointed initially. I was sort of looking forward to the Alan/Sam give and take and wanting to know how Ala..."
Kim,
I, too, was a little disappointed when I began The Siege, but after getting into the book, found myself enjoying it as much as any of White's best, so I say kuddos to an author who has the talent to branch out and still write such a great book. Course, I want him to go back to Boulder - want to see where Alan and Lauren are headed.




message 13: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Just got me a copy of The Siege from the Library again :-) Hope to be reading the second half of the book soon.


message 14: by Christine (new)

Christine Since The Siege is the only one of Stephen White's books I've read I had this weird sense of already knowing the characters of Christopher Poe and Deidre Drake, the circumstances of how they met and their relationship to the time of the novel are all so familiar. Are they in any other novels?


message 15: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Christine wrote: "Since The Siege is the only one of Stephen White's books I've read I had this weird sense of already knowing the characters of Christopher Poe and Deidre Drake, the circumstances of how they met a..."

No - Poe and Dee are new :-)


message 16: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
I never would have imagined that a box of oranges could be so horrifying!


message 17: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
"I thought the person doing the video voice-over had an almost imperceptible British tint to his tone. Like a fine English actor doing an almost spot-on generic American accent." - Sam Purdy, The Siege p.217

This made me think of Hugh Laurie - the award-winning star of the medical drama, House. He does some great acting and his voice - he has a British accent but you'd never know it from his House, MD character.


message 18: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
I am America

I don't know what that means yet - but neither does the FBI so I don't feel too bad :-)


message 19: by Benna (new)

Benna Hindle  (havetoread) | 17 comments Dustin wrote: "Just got me a copy of The Siege from the Library again :-) Hope to be reading the second half of the book soon."

Christine,


I've read almost all his books and don't remember them in any others. Think I would. Wondering if he's introducing some new characters - as thoroughly as he's sketched them. I think that's one of his gifts as a writer - his characters are so real. I know he's left me, as usual, anxiously waiting for his next book.


message 20: by Benna (new)

Benna Hindle  (havetoread) | 17 comments Dustin wrote: "I am America

I don't know what that means yet - but neither does the FBI so I don't feel too bad :-)"


Yes, Dustin. What does "I am America" mean? Another thing I love about White's writing. A lot of impressions and symbolism but plenty of room for the reader to think our own thoughts. . .


message 21: by Christine (new)

Christine I just got Privileged Information and I am looking forward to getting to know Alan Gregory and Boulder.


message 22: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Christine - please start a discussion for Privileged Information if you want :-) Just click on Discussions, then click on new topic.


message 23: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Benna wrote: "Yes, Dustin. What does "I am America" mean? Another thing I love about White's writing. A lot of impressions and symbolism but plenty of room for the reader to think our own thoughts. . ."

Doesn't it get explained by the end of the book? or does the book end without things being really clear?


message 24: by Benna (new)

Benna Hindle  (havetoread) | 17 comments Dustin wrote: "Benna wrote: "Yes, Dustin. What does "I am America" mean? Another thing I love about White's writing. A lot of impressions and symbolism but plenty of room for the reader to think our own thoughts...."
Dustin,

Wouldn't want to spoil the book for you, so... no answer to that question. Will be looking forward to what you think the quote means when you finish reading!
Benna



message 25: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Yeah. I don't want the ending spoiled :-) I've only got about 60 pages left.


message 26: by Christine (new)

Christine Have you finished yet? I'm curious to hear what you think about the ending.


message 27: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
15 pages left - can't imagine there's any more surprises - it got pretty intense there for a few minutes :-)


message 28: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
"Telling the feds a story that made no sense to me made, well, no sense to me." - Sam Purdy, The Siege


message 29: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Well, I think I get the "I am America" thing now :-)


message 30: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
I'm Done :-) and I guess I was wrong about being done with the surprises - two showed up on Pearl Street right at the end! White could definitely do a follow-up/ sequel with these new characters.


message 31: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
"You're dead-rabbit good, Sam Purdy."


message 32: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
In Several reviews I read, other readers mentioned they didn't like the "non-climatic" ending. I liked the way the book ended - thought White did a good job and explained things rather nicely.

I gave The Siege 5 stars - the story worked for me. It was a little slow in the beginning but the pace really picked up before the half-way mark. So far, all the Stephen White books I've rated - I've given either a 4 or 5 star rating :-)


message 33: by Christine (new)

Christine Did you think things came a little too fast at the end? I found it somewhat confusing and I'm not sure I ever got the "I am America" thing. The whole part with the plane was crazy. Remind me again about the two surprises on Pearl Street. I definitely think there can be a sequel and it will involve Chris Poe and Deidre Drake.


message 34: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (last edited Nov 12, 2009 08:04PM) (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
From the Author's Note "Acknowledgments" (found in the back of the book) :-) No Spoilers Here - but some insight into how The Siege came to be:

"This book gives me cause to remind that I make stuff up.

Although The Siege takes unconcealed advantage of real locales, legendary buildings, and revered institutions, I altered them whenever reality proved inconvenient. I adjusted the timing of actual events so that things that had already occurred and events that are planned for the future all take place during the story. I have also taken liberties with the geography of the Yale campus and with the architectural details of prominent buildings in order to describe perspectives that, well, don't exist.

The gestation of this concept took place over a period of five years....

Years back, Jeffrey Deaver helped convince me that this idea had promise. After I began sharing pages I relied on a handful of trusted early readers for counsel..."
-Stephen White



message 35: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Here's a link to Stephen White's essay "Hate Had a Keycard" - he wrote about Annie Le and the true events that occurred on Yale Campus - New Haven, just after The Siege was published.

http://www.authorstephenwhite.com/Ess...


message 36: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (last edited Nov 12, 2009 07:45PM) (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Christine wrote: "Did you think things came a little too fast at the end? I found it somewhat confusing and I'm not sure I ever got the "I am America" thing. The whole part with the plane was crazy. Remind me aga..."

* SPOILER ALERT - Ending Scene on Pearl Street DIRECTLY BELOW - SPOILER ALERT*

Dee and Poe were the surprises :-) I don't know why but I wasn't expecting them. Alan Gregory finally shows up on page 381 of 396 then Dee is right there and then I was surprised again when Poe is there in his Yale sweatshirt looking " a little like the Unabomber".

Another surprise was right before Sam spotted Poe - The pregnancy wasn't a surprise but then "She raised her left hand and waggled her naked ring finger. 'lost some weight, too."

*END of SPOILER ALERT - Ending Scene of The Siege*



I liked the way the whole hostage thing went - and I definitely got the "I am America" meaning. Usual Stephen white thought-provoking stuff :-)


message 37: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
* SPOILER ALERT* - "I am America" / Book Ending - * SPOILER ALERT* Directly BELOW


"To do what I did, I had to decide to be as ruthless as your government was the day my family died.

"For these few days, I had to be America."
-pg.366, The Siege

Dee's conclusion:

"I concluded that the terrorists wanted us to duplicate our mistake at the wedding in Afghanistan right there in New Haven, but this time do it in front of the world." - pg.387, The Siege

*END of SPOILER ALERT* *Directly ABOVE*




message 38: by Christine (new)

Christine I must have skipped that page because I have no recollection of that scene with Poe and Deidre. I was rushing at the end because I had to get the book back to the library. I will have to reread the ending.

I really like White's writing. Its not mind candy like so many books of this genre. I agree his style is thought provoking and his characters leap off the page. He develops them both physically as well as emotionally. You feel Poe's panic when he relives the the events of his past. While he may have changed some things in the geography of his settings, you get a true sense of where you are. I really felt that as he moved his characters around the Yale campus and I have never been there.

That whole hostage thing was amazing. I will not look at the color orange in quite the same way again.


message 39: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Christine wrote: "Did you think things came a little too fast at the end? I found it somewhat confusing and I'm not sure I ever got the "I am America" thing. The whole part with the plane was crazy...."

Yeah. It was real intense there for a few minutes - I think Stephen White got his intended reaction from readers. The plane part was a little confusing. I was asking, "What is happening here?" but I'm happy to report that it all made sense to me :-) some novels just don't work for me like The Siege - I remember one of the Patricia Cornwell novels, I think it was Predator - things were just going slow blah, blah, blah and then all of a sudden Kay is attacked, things happen so fast wham, bam, boom and the book is ending. "What just happened?" "That's it?"

I really liked The Siege :-) I liked his placing of climax in the story. Stephen White is Awesome and I plan to read some of his earlier books (probably in 2010) while I'm waiting for the next Alan Gregory book.


message 40: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Orange and Blue are Denver Broncos colors :-)

From inside the front of The Seige:

"Blue will indicate that I am content. Orange will show my disappointment...
Despite all appearances, I am a reasonable man."


message 41: by Benna (new)

Benna Hindle  (havetoread) | 17 comments What a great discussion! I agree w/ Dee in her assessment of "I am America" Don't know that I would limit it to only the horrible mistake that took place at the Afghanistan wedding, but can't help thinking he (thru Dee) is saying, are we being as careful as possible and we must continue to question and adjust our approach to the Mid-East and all the related problems it has and is causing. . .
As to White - he's great! Wouldn't change a thing about the book and can't wait to see what comes next. Going to go searching to be sure I've read all his novels. Love the little details, too - wonder if the blue / orange does relate to the Broncos?


message 42: by Christine (new)

Christine I have only read The Siege and I have recently started the first Alan Gregory book, Privileged Information, and I have a sense that White really pays attention to what is happening in this country and beyond. White's views are subtle but he still gets his point across. I think he's great too! I think the little details are what make the difference and keep, us, the readers, coming back.

As far as orange and blue go, you need to ask a Bronco fan.


message 43: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Well, since Stephen White lives in and sets most of his books in the state of Colorado, I thought it was probably more than coincidence that the Denver Broncos colors were used. Although Blue is a cool color and Orange a warm color, there were more colors in the spectrum to choose from :-) it's just a thought.


message 44: by Jan C (new)

Jan C (woeisme) | 119 comments You do know that those are also the colors of the Chicago Bears, don't you?

Also the approximate colors of most of the schools I have gone to.


message 45: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Jan wrote: "You do know that those are also the colors of the Chicago Bears, don't you?

Also the approximate colors of most of the schools I have gone to. "


No. I don't know nothin' - but I live in Colorado :-) I'm not into sports at all but I do have a Broncos cap and t-shirts. Whenever I wear them people ask me "How about them Broncos?" and ... I don't know nothin'


message 46: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
I just got this in my email. For those who aren't on Stephen White's mailing list - I think you'll enjoy reading this:

A Note From Stephen White


Mailing List Letter, December 2009

“How’s the next book going?”

I get that question a lot these days. For the record, I don’t adore the question, but the reality is that I have no one to blame for the repetition other than myself.

The new book is progressing well, thank you, but it is not quite done. It is true, if you are someone who wonders about such things, that in a typical publishing cycle I would have completed a new manuscript by now. The title would be firm. The pub date would be set in stone. Early publicity and marketing efforts would be ongoing. Jacket art might even be ready.

Not this time. Not yet.

The reason for the delay in finishing the next book (Book Eighteen, in my head) may be surprising to you. It may also prove to be nothing more than world-class rationalizing by me, but it is tempting for me to lay blame for my lack of progress on Book Eighteen at the feet of Book Seventeen, aka THE SIEGE.

I will explain. THE SIEGE was a complicated book to write. Although Sam Purdy is front and center in the story, the book is a clear departure from my series. The structure of the book is complex, and the time lines are, at times, convoluted. (Some of you will find this puzzling, but I did that part on purpose.) The narrative voices are distinctive, and each narrative perspective has a specific role and reference to the underlying story.

After I completed the first draft of THE SIEGE, it took me an additional few months of rewriting time to get all the pieces to come together in a way that felt satisfying to me. That was time that I would typically have used to get a head start on the next book (yes, Book Eighteen, the one that is not quite done.) Those extra months had to come from somewhere, of course, but the extended period of rewriting is not the sole reason that I hold THE SIEGE responsible for the delay in finishing the current book in an expedient fashion.

I’ve never admitted this before—it’s not that I’m particularly reluctant to admit it, it’s more that no one has asked—but I made a major, I’m talking huge, structural and philosophical change in THE SIEGE very late in the production process, long after the manuscript had been edited and approved by my editor at Dutton.

If you’ve read THE SIEGE, and I’m kind of assuming you have (otherwise this note will feel hopelessly tangential), you read a book about a highly atypical hostage situation, told entirely from the perspective of people who remained outside the building where the hostages were being held. But that wasn’t the case in the version of the story that had been initially approved by my editor. In the first version—Jane Davis is one of only a handful of people who has read both takes, by the way—THE SIEGE had an additional narrative voice that is not present in the finished book. The additional voice provided a unique narrative perspective that is also absent from the finished book. The voice belonged to one of the hostages, Jane, and her perspective gave the reader an opportunity to view a narrow slice of her experience inside the Book & Snake tomb. It also introduced the character(s) of the hostage taker(s) as she saw him/them.

Yes, in that first approved manuscript, the reader actually got to know a hostage, and the reader was introduced to a hostage taker (or two.) The reader also got to read descriptions of some of the interior of the tomb.

I was never convinced any of that was a good thing. Truth be told, I never loved the part of the story I was telling from inside the tomb. All along, I would have preferred to be able to tell the story I had in my head without ever figuratively passing through the doors of Book & Snake. I’d been compelled to include the interior perspective only because I hadn’t been creative enough to find another way to reveal components of the narrative backstory that would later prove essential to making the story’s conclusion, well, make sense.

Only a few months before publication, I devised a fix. (I devised this fix in my head—that’s an important clarification.) I thought that by writing some new material that included the essential backstory, and by integrating the new information in specific locations inserted into the remaining narrative perspectives, I could eliminate the pages that had been troubling me. I made a case to my editor—okay, I kind of begged—for removing Jane’s perspective from the story entirely, and for writing new pages for insertion. He reminded me that it was very late in the process (in effect, he cautioned me that I was suggesting a new, major operation just as the patient’s anesthesia was wearing off.) Still, he agreed to let me attempt the changes I was proposing.

(I digress. I’ve been blessed throughout my long career by editors who edit. In modern publishing, that is not a given. I have had editors who trust me, and in return, ask me to trust them. The major surgery I was proposing was an instant of that kind of mutual trust. Brian Tart, my editor, granted me some unusual latitude, latitude that we both knew put his production schedule in jeopardy. To demonstrate that his trust was justified, I knew I had only one real chance to convince him that my alterations would in fact make the book better. That specific end result, in my mind and in Brian’s, is the whole point of the editing process.)

The work of sketching out the new material, deleting the existing scenes from inside the tomb, and drafting new transitions to disguise all the scar tissue, ate up a couple of precious weeks of writing time. After Brian saw, and felt, the fresh power that the story had with the new approach, he gave me an enthusiastic go ahead to work on the changes, and I proceeded to spend another month or so polishing the material.

Have I mentioned that all this happened very late in the game? If I didn’t, it did. Even if I did, it did.

Why am I telling you this story? Certainly, because I would like to believe that one or two of you might find the writing/editing/revising process interesting. But in case all that misdirection is having its desired effect, I am also busy making excuses—the additional time I spent doing major surgery on THE SIEGE was all time that, in a typical publication cycle, I would have been using to write the next novel (Book Eighteen), the one that is, alas, not quite finished.

The result is that instead of writing you an update about the next book, I am writing you this hopefully mildly amusing retrospective about the last one, and providing a litany of (believable?) excuses about why the new book isn’t quite, well, done.

The plan is to finish Book Eighteen post-haste. At that point, the next plan is to write you all again with some details about Book Eighteen.

So, soon, I promise to get back to you with a little of the new story (it is topical), to confirm the new title (think part of Satan’s anatomy, unless that changes, too), and hopefully to confirm a pub date.

In the meantime, don’t believe anything you read about the book. People make stuff up.

Believe me, I know.

One more thing. A couple of times a year—on pub day, and around Auld Lang Syne time—I get sentimental about this privilege. What privilege? I get to tell stories. I get to write them down. And I get to get paid for doing it.

I have this privilege because of all of you.

Thank you.
-Stephen White


message 47: by Christine (new)

Christine Thanks for sharing this letter from Stephen White. Its very informative as to his writing process and when something new may be headed our way.


message 48: by Ginny (new)

Ginny Just finished reading The Siege. Loved it, really liked that it was set in New Haven, so I could visualize where things were happening. I think White really stepped out of the comfort zone of the Alan Gregory characters here. The fact that it was Sam as the "out of town cop" was incidental, it could have been a completely new character. I think this may be White's best book to date.


message 49: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Welcome to the group Ginny! I know Stephen had the idea for The Siege for a while. Have you read Kill Me yet? That's another one where the main characters are kinda set aside :-)


message 50: by Ginny (new)

Ginny Yes, until The Siege, Kill Me was my favorite by White. Reading Kill Me has permanently removed the phrase "Just Shoot Me" from my vocabulary. Every time I hear someone utter that phrase or something similar, I recommend they read Kill Me.


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