I’m working on a new novel, tentatively titled Chasing the Bottle, about a bartender who makes one mistake, which rolls into another mistake, and then another. I’m going to use some stories from my time as a bartender — either things I’ve seen myself or stories I’ve heard.
And yes, I’m using some of my old “regulars” as characters. The names will be changed to protect the innocent — and especially the guilty.
I’m working very hard to write 1,500 to 2,000 words per day. In order to do this, I’m asking some friends to be my first readers while I’m writing the manuscript. I know, I know. You’re not supposed to do that. But quite honestly, if I have people bitching at me to write every day, I’m more likely to do it. I like the immediacy of daily deadlines. It’s one of the reasons I was a good newspaper reporter/editor.
This is going to be an interesting book, I think — although I do expect it to be a fairly short novel (around 60,000-70,000 words). And, like so much of my work, it is going to have a crime element to it. But in many ways, I think this might be the most realistic of my stories yet.
I like the conversational tone of the first chapter. It flows well, I think. And it hints that things will get very dark very quickly. Here’s hoping that I find a story worth telling in there.