What do you do with a perfectly good manuscript that's sitting on the shelf?
These days, you publish it, and that's exactly what I'm going to do.
The problem? Way back in the day (we're talking 2004), I sent the 2nd Jeff Resnick book to my agent. She read the first three chapter and told me, "I won't represent this. It's a cozy." PIty she didn't read the rest of the book. It does have a cozy setting (a country inn in Stowe, Vermont), but it's still a Jeff Resnick book, and that means it's gritter than my Booktown or Victoria Square books.
She went on to say, "Write another book. You have lots of ideas." The problem was, I was working full time, I was running my own little business, and I didn't have lots of ideas or time. I started the book and then lost my job, which did give me the time to write and finish it (record time, I might add). I decided to set Dead In Red three months after the first book (where the original second book happened six months after the first), and I borrowed elements from that book and incorporated them into Dead In Red. I will admit, Dead in Red is a lot grittier and violent than the original 2nd Jeff Resnick book. But man, what an exciting ending to the original book.
I finished Dead in Red, was in the midst of polishing it, when I got a note from my agent. Surprise! I'm retiring! And she did, I had no representation, and that was it. I was not a happy camper. I felt abandoned, and I'm sure I could have sold that original book to Five Star (where the first one ended up) without a blink of an eye.
So, the original 2nd book has been sitting on a shelf for the past eight years, gathering dust. The problem was ... I'd already finished the first four books when I wrote Dead in Red. I hadn't figured out how to remedy the stolen storylines. But ... now I have.
When will the new book come out? Sometime this fall. I have to work on my contracted books first. (And since I don't know which one will be due first, I'm juggling Victoria Square #4 and Booktown #8.) I'm giving myself weekends to rewrite the original 2nd Jeff Resnick book. I'm giving myself firm daily writing quotas and if I don't meet them, I can't "play" with Jeff. (Although, my ideas to "rescue" it really aren't all that extensive after all. Go figure!) So ... if you'll indulge me bringing out a new book that's plunked down at the series (so far) halfway point, there will be a "new to you" Jeff Resnick book sometimes this fall.
The name? Room at the Inn. (And it'll be available as an e book and a Trade Paperback.)
Do you think you'd be interested?