Viewed as a young adult novel that’ll be all the rage with fans of J.K. Rowling, J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis, Ryan Steck (author of Fields of Fire & Editor-in-Chief of The Real Book Spy) calls it, “A blistering, high-stakes, fast-paced supernatural thriller that’s impossible to put down.” Kirkus lauds, “Fast-paced action and a rich setting boost the beginning of a promising paranormal saga.” Deftly tackling such themes as addiction, revenge, faith, and friendship, the book is Hunt For Eden’s Star, the first in a planned “Beacon Hill” series, and the debut effort of author Darek “D.J.” Williams. He’ll be joining us in September as our Friday evening Special Guest Speaker to share how it came to be, and what media skill sets he brought to the table to make it so widely anticipated.
On the SCWC Facebook Group, we recently had a hearty discussion about “writing joy.” How do you do that? I’m not talking about adjectives and what not. What I meant, as with fear, grief, or any other some such, is not just telling readers, but forcing strangers across the page to feel an emotion with mere words. It’s one thing to state s/he’s happy or elated, another to convey that sense of inflated being to the bone, if not its marrow. As a result, author/workshop leader Judy Reeves has jumped in to develop a new workshop that will address the subject, and what tools to apply to do so effectively. The whole thing arose from this post on our blog a couple of days before: The Why of Writing.
Good Muse Galore
Been a while since we caught up with all the SCWCers with books recently released, or soon to be. It’s a lot to track, but here’s some of the latest:
There’s Books 5, 6 and 7 in Russ Thompson’s popular teen & young adult Finding Forward Series, Overspray, Knocked Down, and Torn.
From Jennifer Herrera, literary agent and longtime friend of the conference, The Hunter, her debut psychological thriller … Book 10 in David Putnam’s Bruno Johnson thriller series, The Scorned … Laura Perkins (writing as Mercy Hollow) has a new story in the anthology Wicked Ever After from Grim House Publishing.
Bipolar, A Gift of Thorns, a memoir, is now out from Dale Zurawski … Dennis K. Crosby’s third installment in Reaper of Souls Kassidy Simmons’ paranormal adventure, Death’s Despair drops in June … and Carl Vonderau’s latest, Saving Myles, a financial thriller, will be published in August. So much reading to catch up on from our ever-expanding writer’s community.
Best of success to all!
Discounted pre-registration is now open and we’ll begin announcing workshop staff, additional speakers, agents and editors next month. We’re pretty much fully back to successful, regular in-person status for the fourth time since the pandemic. And speaking of success, if you haven’t already binged it on Netflix, The Night Agent is based on a thriller written by novelist Matthew Quirk. He just informed me the show’s been picked up for a second season. Here’s some of Matt’s stellar advice presented to the SCWC in Irvine…
–Michael Steven Gregory
Executive Director, SCWC