Wednesday, March 24, 2010

what we say

One week ago today, my Advance Copies of The Marbury Lens came. As I did with the galleys of my first two novels, I let my son take one to read. He's fifteen, by the way. And he read the book (360 pages and small print, too) in one day.

When he was finished reading it, we had a pretty long conversation about it. He had some wondering-type questions about a couple characters, and he speculated a bit about what might be on "the next page," after the end of the book, which was a really good thing.

I know that asking family members what they think of your work is not a very valid way of testing the critical waters, but I also know that my son is pretty honest and even if he tried to be diplomatic I'd be able to see right through it.

So I am very pleased with the first "boy test" of the book.

I think it's going to be good.

As I mentioned, too, I also gave an ARC to the boys I got to work with as they wrote, revised, and revised again, short stories they entered in a young writers contest. I don't mean to get all mushy, but there really is nothing better than putting a book I wrote in the hands of a kid.

At last summer's ALA annual in Chicago, exhibitors were selling hardcovers. A boy came to the booth where Ghost Medicine was on display, and he said that he really wanted a copy of the book but couldn't afford one (I think he was about 12). So I gave him the only copy I had -- I had carried it in my backpack from California.

This will maybe tick some writers off, but, in a perfect world, I would write for nothing and give my books away to anyone who wanted to read them.

So, anyway, about these kids who got ARCs of The Marbury Lens from me on Tuesday... well, I'll tell you about what they think later on.