Lawrence Block: lies, spiders, and more lies (book reviews)

Telling Lies for Fun & Profit: A Manual for Fiction WritersTelling Lies for Fun & Profit: A Manual for Fiction Writers by Lawrence Block
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I read Telling Lies for Fun and Profit in the early 1980s, a couple of years after I’d decided to put aside my attempts to write a publishable fiction novel for a while.

I knew I wasn’t done with writing and that I would give it another try sometime, but it wasn’t until I picked up Block’s book of essays about writing that I decided it was time to write again. In friendly conversational style, Block gave me glimpses into a writer’s world that seemed accessible and answered many of my questions before I’d even asked them. Can you name real places in a novel? What about using a pseudonym? With practical musings on a host of subjects, Block’s ramble through the territory of writing gave me an inside view that told me it was time to pick up my dream of being a novelist and dust it off. The result was my first published novel, Pacific Disturbance.

Thanks, Lawrence Block, for giving writers a hand!

 

Spider, Spin Me a Web: A Handbook for Fiction WritersSpider, Spin Me a Web: A Handbook for Fiction Writers by Lawrence Block
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A great book for writers and anyone thinking about being a writer! This book continues the collection of gems from Lawrence Block’s 10 years as a columnist for Writer’s Digest.

Block’s style is friendly and casual, often irreverent – and filled with gems for the creator. Definitely a keeper for the writer’s bookshelf, and a great read for anyone who is curious about writers and how they do (or don’t do) it. I read this book years ago, and often return to it.

Check out the last two books in the “Lies” series: “The Liar’s Companion” and “The Liar’s Bible”
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About writing Dance of Seduction

Ricardo Swan had vowed never to fall victim to irrational passion, but when he saw La Gitana dancing in a Merida night club, the primitive needs he denied were stirred. But although La Gitana was Mexico’s most popular singer and folk dancer, known for the passion of her dance, inside she was frozen. Could Ricardo get past her guardian brothers and her own defenses to find the secret of her heart?

Authors note: “I wrote this book shortly after returning home from an extended 2-year visit to Mexico. The story grew out of my fascination with the strong family values of the Mexican people, and my interest in the romance of flamenco and the mysteries of archeology. I started playing with these and Maria and Ricardo came to life in my imagination. I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed writing it :)”

Originally published in hardcover by Mills and Boon Limited.

Now available as an ebook through a variety of online retailers.

About writing After All This Time

Carrie Brooke fell in love with her employer, Charles Kantos, the first time she saw him, but she’d always been careful not to let it show. Now she’d ruined it all, and when she woke up in bed with him the morning after his best friend’s wedding, Carrie knew there was only one thing to do – run. But Carrie was Kantos Holdings’s best acquisitions specialist and Charles wasn’t letting her quit.

… about writing After All This Time

“I wrote After All This Time shortly after returning to Vancouver Island from Mexico, where I had been living for two years. Like many of my stories, a number of diverse ideas came together to create the story After All This Time. I’d just spent two years in a strongly family oriented,  laid back, machismo culture. Driving to a friend’s guest house near Vancouver I drove by numerous golf courses which I noticed particularly because there was controversy over a wealthy developer’s plans to build a new golf course on farmland near my new home. And last – or perhaps I should say first of all, I’d years ago shared a table at a writer’s event with another romance writer who said one day she wanted to open a book with the heroine in bed with the hero. Personally, I’d always preferred to let my hero and heroine develop some chemistry first, but … well, it was different with Charles and Carrie. I hope you enjoy reading this book as much as I enjoyed writing it.” Vanessa Grant

Originally published in hardcover by Mills and Boon Limited.

Available as an eBook for Kindle and Other Devices