Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Major, Seriously Gigantic News

My second book, THE REGULATOR, has been pushed back one month from January 2008 to February 2008. The decision was made by my publisher, and apparently this is a very good thing as it means the book will get better placement, more marketing support, a more comprehensive health care plan, greater SPF in its sunblock, and a better-looking date to the prom.

So for all the, um, tens of you who've read advance copies of THE MARK, you'll have to wait an extra month for the next book. And for the thousands of you who haven't read the book (but hopefully will!), it won't affect your lives in the slightest. Until you read THE MARK and simply can't handle waiting an extra month to read the next book.

Plus I'm thinking about running another contest next week. Something along the lines of: Whoever can think of the best illegitimate reason for deserving a signed ARC of THE MARK wins a signed ARC of THE MARK.

Sample entry: "I deserve an ARC of THE MARK because my cousin's nephew's second cousin once served Jason's mom at a Dunkin' Donuts and gave her an extra Splenda with her Dunkachino."

Stay tuned...

Monday, February 12, 2007

Top 6 Entries for THE MARK Contest Contest (Contest)

Apologies for the delay in posting, several (figurative) fires to put out at work plus a wife and puppy slightly under the weather can have adverse effects on blogging time. So, without further ado, here are the top six (up from five) entries in THE MARK contest contest (contest):

Honorable Mention #1:
A woman named Amanda Davies, who emailed to inform me that she shared a name with the female protagonist in THE MARK. No 'official' entry, but receiving a letter from someone whose name you apparently stole for your book is worth noting.

Honorable Mention #2:
If I win I will take my winnings and buy my son and daughter in law a telephone so I can call them when I am in the neighborhood and not worry about cell service. I hope I win.
My Dad

The first person to be The Mark by running around Boston with a target on their back flipping off drivers wins an ARC of THE MARK.
Bryon Quertermous

The first person to get photos of the couple's faces on the cover of 'The Mark' wins an ARC of THE MARK.
PS - Anything goes - Brad Pitt & Angelina Jolie, or even Herman Munster and Lassie.
Jennifer Macaire

The first person to yell "Freebird!" at a Wayne Newton concert with an ARC of THE MARK (One million bonus points if Newton sings it, two million bonus points if his security people beat your ass).
John McAuley

The first person to interrupt a Toronto Maple Leafs game wearing nothing but a Russian flag and bunny slippers wins an ARC of THE MARK.

Two words: Meat Fight.
Dave White

And the winner of a signed ARC of THE MARK goes to:
The first person to tease her/his left nipple with a rusty fork while reading nursery rhymes while a prostitute dressed as a teddy bear murmurs, "dirty, dirty" wins an ARC of THE MARK.
Duane Swierczynski

Congratulations Duane. And may God have mercy on your soul.

Friday, February 09, 2007

The Last Chance Saloon

The very first Man in Black contest contest (contest) ends at 12:00 Pacific time tonight, so you have scant few hours to send in your entries for the chance to win a signed ARC of THE MARK. Again, the rules can be found

All entries should be emailed to The top 5 entries will be announced on Monday. The winner gets a signed ARC. The rest of the entrants get nothing but positive vibes.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

48 Hours Ain't Just a Movie Starring Nick Nolte

There are two days left for you to get your entries in for the chance to win a signed ARC of THE MARK. In case you missed it, check out the rules here. The best idea for a contest wins, and the winner will be announced here on Monday,

And not only will you win the signed ARC, but you'll get to keep the package it comes in for your recycling pleasure!

On another note, many, many congratulations to Allison Brennan, whose new novel SPEAK NO EVIL will debut at #14 on the New York Times bestseller list. Way to go Allison!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Done and Done

It's official. As of this afternoon, my second Henry Parker novel is now with my editor and agent. Tentatively titled THE REGULATOR, it clocks in at about 93,000 words and is scheduled to hit stores in January 2008.

I'm sure by the end of the process I'll have done at least two or three more drafts. I'm very happy with how the book came out and I'm excited to see what's in store for my characters in the third book.

Now I need a nap.

Two days left to submit your contest entry to win a signed ARC of THE MARK. It's the most important email you'll send this hour.

Friday, February 02, 2007

THE MARK Contest Contest (Contest)

Answer: A signed advance reading copy (ARC) of THE MARK, my debut novel.

Question: What will the lucky winner of the very first contest on THE MAN IN BLACK receive?

That's right, I'm following in the footsteps of, oh, about a billion other authors and running a contest whose winner will receive a signed ARC of THE MARK. Only problem is, I'm too lazy to come up with an idea for a contest. So of course that will be the contest. Simply come up with the best idea for a contest, shoot it over to me, and you might win an ARC of THE MARK for your reading pleasure (or your selling on eBay pleasure).

The reader who comes up the the best, the craziest, the funniest, the weirdest, wildest, most brilliant, most ludicrous contest will win a copy of THE MARK. There are no other limits, no other rules, check your inhibitions at the door.


1) The person who can kill the most polar bears while singing "Ave Maria" wins an ARC of THE MARK.
2) The first person to sleep with Burt Bacharach while constantly uttering catchphrases from "Austin Powers" wins a copy of THE MARK.


Email your entries to You have until Friday, February 9th to submit an entry. On Monday, February 12th I'll post the best ones and pick the winner.

I know there are some mighty creative (and insane) people out there, so let's see what you got. May the most demented mind win.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Thursday Update

The lack of recent posts, as well as longer (i.e. more interesting) posts is due to my going pedal-to-the-metal to complete my second novel THE REGULATOR, which will be turned in to my publisher and agent on Monday. I'm not the first person to say this, but writing a second (contracted) book is a very different experience from writing the first.

When you write your first novel, it's an act of passion. Unless someone in your immediate family runs a publishing house, chances are you can't be sure it will find a home. So you write it with a minimum of expectations. You hope for the best, prepare for the worst, but in the end you write the book because you simply want to write it. There are hopes, but likely no expectations.

When THE MARK sold last March and my euphoria simmered down, suddenly I realized I had two more unwritten books under contract, as well as deadlines in which to write them. Thankfully the plot for the book that would become THE REGULATOR was already a seed in my mind. While I waited to see what fate had in store for THE MARK, I began sketching the idea for my next book, which would have been a stand alone had THE MARK failed to sell. When it did, I took many elements from that embryonic idea and used them for the second Henry Parker novel. And while it felt great to again be putting finger to laptop, writing a novel during a year in which:

1) I changed jobs
2) My wife changed jobs
3) My wife studied for the third level of her CFA exam (and passed!)
3) We planned our wedding
4) We bought a house
5) I agreed to co-chair the 2007 ThrillerFest conference

got a little touchy at times. (and yes, I do hear the world's smallest violin playing for me).

In fact I'd say I wrote the vast majority of THE REGULATOR over the past 3 months, once the wedding had passed and our lives began to settle down again. My favorite writing time became 10:00 at night, when our apartment was quiet, and I could write and then go straight to bed. And just like THE MARK, I wrote THE REGULATOR fairly quickly because, as a reader, I too wanted to know what would happen next.

Thankfully things are quieter now--though our new puppy Wilson is hard to ignore--because my third novel is due right around the corner. No rest for the weary. But I wouldn't have it any other way.

Plus I just informed my publisher of the title for the third Henry Parker novel:

Most importantly this keeps up my theme of two-word titles that begin with 'The'.