Sorry for the radio silence. This has been the longest I've gone without posting -- a record 27 days. I have my reasons, believe me. I haven't been lazy, or on vacation, or reading up a storm. No, nothing really fun like that.
I have been finishing my book. I started this project seven years ago and can't quite believe it's coming to an end. I've had my share of ups and downs -- the editor who acquired the book left St. Martins and my new editor had so much backlogged work it took him many months to read my manuscript. Waiting to hear what he thought was excruciating.
The good news is he liked Towers of Gold. He returned his comments to me in late October and I have spent the last three weeks working like crazy. I feel like this is a term paper and I have to pull consecutive all-nighters to finish. I didn't really have many substantive changes to make, but like all writers, I love to tinker. I could play around with words endlessly, changing adjectives here, tightening descriptions there.
I haven't quite let go of the book, but think it will be complete very, very soon. Like in the next few days. I will still have to gather photographs and all that sort of stuff, but the writing and thinking will be finished.
The book is 133,000 words and about 450 pages. I am not sure how many pages that will turn out to be in book form. But Isaias Hellman's life was pretty fascinating and I tried to highlight lots of good parts. Readers will learn about Los Angeles when it was still a dusty pueblo; ferocious rain storms and droughts, the Nevada Silver boom, the Huntington family and Southern Pacific, the 1906 San Francisco earthquake, the ensuing graft trials. World War I and the influenza epidemic and most importantly, the Jewish contribution to the settlement of California.
(This is MY blog, so I can plug my own book, right?)
Anyway, hello again.