Yesterday was another writing day for me, somewhere around 5,500 words, and about 7 PM, I finished The Hard Years, the fourth book in my Tinder Street family saga. This book takes its title from the time period it covers, from 1930 through the end of 1934, some of the bleakest days of the Great Depression.
As I do with all the books in this series, I wove historical fact into the storyline, so readers will learn a lot about how people coped with job losses, shortages of everyday items they once took for granted but could no longer afford, and the changing political and societal scene in the country as a result of the Depression. There is also quite a bit about the gangster era, with well-known names like John Dillinger and Pretty Boy Floyd, along with lesser-known bad guys who controlled the Toledo, Ohio mob scene, like the Purple Gang’s Yonnie Licavoli, bootlegger Jack Kennedy, and gambling kingpin Jimmy Hayes. All of these were real people, and the stories I share about them in the book all actually happened.
As for the fictional people in Tinder Street, the McNally’s and their extended family, there is so much happening. As some lose their careers, others are finding new paths in life, unexpected marriages are taking place, babies are being born, and sometimes those good people find their faith challenged. But like real people who survived those hard times, our friends from Tinder Street will manage, for the most part.
The book came in at 105,517 words before final editing and proofreading. I started it on February 1, so it took me exactly two months. So what happens now?
Today and possibly tomorrow, I will be busy reading through the last chapters I did and making corrections, then I’ll print them out for Terry to edit and proofread, and you know the cycle from there. Those chapters will go off to my other two proofreaders, and once everybody’s corrections are made, I will print the whole manuscript out, and Terry will go through it once again. After making any other changes she suggests, the entire manuscript will go back to Roberta for her to do the same thing. It’s a lot of work by some very good people, and I can never tell them enough how much I appreciate all of their efforts.
Meanwhile, Elizabeth Mackey, my amazing cover artist, is working on a couple of ideas for the book cover. Elizabeth always surprises me because I can give her just a basic concept, not even knowing myself what I really need, and she comes back with something that makes me sit up and say, “Oh, wow, that’s exactly what I need!”
All of this takes time, so I wouldn’t expect the e-book to be out for another two weeks or so, and then it will be another two or three weeks after that before the print book is formatted and ready to go. But I hope you’re going to agree it was worth the wait when you read it.
And finally, here’s a chuckle to start your day from the collection of funny signs we see in our travels and that our readers share with us.
Be sure to enter our latest Free Drawing. This week’s prize is an audiobook of Watching Over Me: A Psychological Thriller, the first book in the heart-racing Crime After Crime series by M.K. Farrar and M.A. Comley. Trust me, this British crime writing duo know how to keep readers on the edge of their seats from the first page to the last! To enter, click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name (first and last) in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn Sunday evening. Note: Due to the high shipping cost of printed books and Amazon restrictions on e-books to foreign countries, only entries with US addresses and e-mail addresses are allowed.
Thought For The Day – One perk of being my friend is that you’ll be the normal one.