The two-way pull

By the time I sent off the copyedit of Garment of Shadows the first week of January, my brain was empty of words.  In the last year, I’ve written short stories and introductions, guest blogs, essays, & silly stuff to do with the Pirate King publication, my half of The Arvon Book of Crime Writing, and this novel.  Fried synapses, anyone?

I’m now in the odd position of laying out plans for not one, but two very different novels.  The book I’ll be writing this year is set in Paris, 1929, and is about some of the characters from Touchstone. My shelves are filling with books from the library on Sylvia Beach, Hemingway, Man Ray, Kiki of Montparnasse, etc, and  I plan on a week in Paris this June to walk the territory and remind myself of the city’s flavor.

On the other hand, I’m going to Japan in April, for a book I won’t be writing for a year (yes, the “missing” Russell tale between The Game and Locked Rooms.)  Which means that I have to do a certain amount of research concerning Japan in 1924.

As well as work on a bit of the languages involved, so I can ask how much something is and where is the x.

Maybe I should just combine the two and write a Russell investigation with Bennett Grey and Harris Stuyvesant, about Japanoiserie in ‘Twenties Paris.

Confusion reigns.

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  1. The Bold Flying Officer on February 6, 2012 at 3:46 pm

    Aaahh – Paris in June … odd years it’s the air show at Le Bourget, even years it’s the Eurosatory land show at Parc des Expositions. Be prepared for sun and rain, and of an evening beware Blue Sky in rue de Lambre just off boulevard Montparnasse – you might just just find me with a glass of the red infuriator! Enjoy as I shall in anticipation of your words to come …

    Mike (or should I call myself Michel en Francaise?)

  2. Tammy Albee on February 7, 2012 at 8:54 am

    Have a great trip…. Being empty of words means you just need to relax and take in your environment for a bit…. I suggest eating and reading and sitting in comfortable chairs….

  3. A fan of deduction on February 7, 2012 at 10:21 am

    have fun eating snails and ratatouille.

  4. aishoka on February 7, 2012 at 11:17 am

    I’m so glad you’re checking back in with the folks from Touchstone–I loved that one almost as much as the Russells! How about doing both books…just in case you’re not busy enough…

  5. TheMadLibrarian on February 7, 2012 at 11:37 am

    Very much looking forward to revisiting some of the characters from Touchstone. I’ve also enjoyed Folly and Keeping Watch; Folly because of the carpentry and Keeping Watch because of the sympathetic homeless crazy guy main character. I wouldn’t mind if you returned to those islands for another goround.

  6. Laraine on February 7, 2012 at 3:29 pm

    Well, you know for sure it won’t be a boring year. Unless you got used to the stimulus of last year and begin to think that working on one book at a time is slow . . . . Have fun, in any event.

  7. Ashley on February 7, 2012 at 4:18 pm

    I look forward to reading both of them. I had hoped that you would write a book about the time between The Game and Locked Rooms.

  8. Merrily Taylor on February 8, 2012 at 7:27 am

    Head spinning, Laurie, but will think of you enjoying Japan at a time of the year when it should be beautiful! Although I do admit I have a secret craving to see Holmes and Russell get to 1925…LOL…

  9. Peggy Mitchell on February 8, 2012 at 11:32 am

    I know how to say: Domo Arigato (Thank you Styx) and I will certainly say that when Garment of Shadows comes out.

  10. Kath on February 8, 2012 at 10:32 pm

    Ah, Paris. There is no such thing as a bad time to visit Paris. Enjoy!

  11. Artemisia on February 10, 2012 at 7:48 am

    So many people seem to be writing about the 20s & 30s in Paris. I really want to know what Russell & Holmes did for the Emperor in Japan…

  12. Jessara on February 12, 2012 at 6:23 pm

    How would you manage to live in your head with all those characters interacting? While Russell would be the dominant member of any group, Stuyvesant just wouldn’t be able to play nicely with her. He’d respect Holmes, but doing all this in Japan just boggles me. In Paris, at least, they’d all be on equal footing. And you thought last year was complicated.

  13. Kathy on February 16, 2012 at 4:01 am

    I am SO glad that you are finially gifting us with the Japan story! I wish you good luck for both of your expeditions, and may I venture to suggest someone you may wish to contact while there, perhaps: A fellow Holmsian enthusiast, author of the long-running (started in the 80s!) detective themed manga Gosho Aoyama, whose work appears on Shonen Sunday. He is reported to be a lovely person, and his work is so very steeped in detective lore – and Holmsian in particular – that it’s very hard to miss even for the uninitiated. His very main character of said series is an admitted Holmes addict, and choses the alias ‘Conan Edogawa’ after Doyle’s middle name and a famed and renowned pen name of the father of Mystery and Detective fiction in Japan, Edogawa Rampo. ’tis an idle suggestion, for what it is, but I admit that I would love to be a gnat on the wall to assist to any conversations you two great Holmsians would have, interpreter notwithstanding!

  14. Katy Korkos on February 17, 2012 at 5:55 pm

    Have you read “The Hare with Amber Eyes?” A fabulous book about a search for family stories, art collection and salon life in Paris,

    • Laurie King on February 18, 2012 at 7:52 am

      Just read it, by coincidence. I agree, a great story.

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