On Ambition...aka, My Latest Book Deal
Flashback, c. 2011:
- Me: “I want to write a book.”
- Husband, James: “You are writing a book. It’s called The Lost.”
- Me: “Not that book. Another book.”
- Practical husband, James: “You are writing another book. That one’s called The Given.”
- Me: “Not that book.”
- Practical husband falls still, challenging when driving across the hard-baked Mojave in the middle of the summer: “Okay. So what book do you want to write?”
- “I want to write a monster of a chase book. I want to write cat-and-mouse thriller with life-and death stakes—no, death and death stakes. I want to write a balls-to-the-wall chess match between two people—no one else—and not let up until the final page.”
- James (predictably practical): “Gee, babe. You should really be more ambitious.”
- Me, arms crossed: “Okay, then. I want to scare the *&%$ out of Stephen King.”
The photo at the side was taken in August 2011, almost three years ago to the day, and it’s the moment I started the monster of a chase book that aimed to be a cat-and-mouth death march between two sole characters across the Mojave desert that doesn’t let up and might even scare Stephen King:
And this is today’s Publishers Marketplace:
“Vicki Pettersson’s SWERVE, in which a medical professional goes head-to-head against an unpredictable killer, and has only twenty-four hours to find her abducted fiancé somewhere in the searing Mojave Desert, to Ed Schlesinger at Gallery, in a good deal, for publication in Summer 2015, by Peter McGuigan at Foundry Literary + Media (US).”
This is my first thriller, my first hard cover, and my first title with Simon & Schuster. Let it suffice to say that despite the side photo, not every writing day was a day at the beach. Still, you have to start somewhere and I began this after my initial research trip through the desert for SWERVE. Sea breeze goes well with a blank screen and bald hope.
Mind, I don’t know if I managed to write something that’d scare the *&%$ out of Stephen King…but early reader feedback tells me I’m going to cause some sleepless nights for one or two of you.