Thursday, April 16, 2009

On the Road Again, Willie Nelson, "Beefcake" and

I can't get Willie Nelson out of my head - "On the road again..."

Thanks to all who have come out and seen me in Chicago, Spokane and Seattle. After an appearance at the Bellevue University Bookstore tonight at 7:00 I hit the road tomorrow for Portland, San Francisco, San Mateo, San Jose, Los Angeles, San Diego, Phoenix, Tucson and Denver and finish with a couple more parties here in Burien and Kirkland. It's been a lot of fun so far and I'm looking forward to more of the same back out on the road. So come on out and ask me questions or just say hello. The venues are all posted on my website.


In Portland I'll be participating in a photoshoot for a calendar to benefit the Oregon Writer's Colony and its efforts to renovate its historic meeting house. The theme is for writers to "bare" their inner writing soul so rumor has it there will be some skin showing. I told them they'd have to shoot me in the dark so "beefcake" doesn't become "beefycake."
All in good fun and for a great cause.
Wow, check out the link to the review from I'm grateful that the reviewer enjoyed the book, and understood the book so well. I know that Joe is a lawyer by background, so the review was especially gratifying.

Writing Tip of the Week

Okay, you have your protagonist in his ordinary world and you've incited him into action. You now also know what is the end game, his ultimate goal. Draw a horizontal line with each event on the line. 2/3 of the way down the line, write in what is the climax of the story. Note this is not the ending, but the climax, that defining emotional moment like the verdict in The Cyanide Canary or when Dana Hill discovers who killed her brother in Damage Control. It's the wow moment in the book and from there it will be a race to the conclusion. Don't know the climax, yet? You really should, because next week we'll start to fill in that time line you're creating.

Best to you all,

Bob Dugoni

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Chicago My Kind of Town

I've started my tour, in Chicago, for Wrongful Death.

What a great city. I've been here before and can't believe how great the people are. The weather has been as unpredictable as Seattle. We've had beautiful sunshine, rain, snow, and hail. I feel like I am the weatherman.

I signed the first night at Centuries and Sleuths in Forest Park. Great store and Augie, the owner is a great guy. Go see him and tell him I said hello.

Last night I went out with my old College roommate, Peter Gabrielle. Not the singer, the financial whiz. After 22 years in New York, Pete took a promotion and moved his beautiful wife and kids to Chicago. Great to catch up and see one of the good guys doing so well.

Tonight I'm at the Borders in Oak Brook. Looking forward to it.
Then back home for a day before leaving for Auntie's in Spokane.

Writing Tip of the Week

Now that you have your protagonist in her ordinary world and you've given her a call to adventure or inciting incident, ask what is the throughline of your story. That is, what is the ultimate goal for your protagonist. What does he or she seek to accomplish. For instance, Dorothy's ultimate goal in The Wizard of Oz is to get back home. Be specific.

More to come.


Thursday, April 2, 2009

Seeing Color? Become a character in a book.

Forget writer's block, how about writer's cramp?

When I was a kid, my brother and I liked that commercial where the learned owl is trying to determine how many licks does it take to get to the center of a tootsie roll, tootsie pop.

I was reminded of that commercial on Monday when I flew to Spokane to see how many books I could sign in six hours and still make my flight home. The answer, 2520. I never knew writer's cramp until now.

Seeing Color?

But, to have a little fun, I signed all of the books in black ink, except for one. If the lucky person who buys that book emails me and can tell me the color of the signature and answer one other conversation, I will name a character after them in my next book.

I leave Friday for Chicago where I'll teach a two-day seminar on writing and then the tour begins. If you've signed up for my mailing list you'll be getting an email today or tomorrow loaded with information on where and when I will be signing, hopefully in a store near you.

Writing Tip of the Week:

Okay, if you've been following along, you should now have created your character and the world in which he or she lives. You should also have come up with the inciting event that has set the story in motion. Now that your character's journey is underway, where does it first take him or her - to a new world, perhaps, new state, new job, new house - someplace different than his ordinary world and what is the first obstacle he or she encounters in this new place. (An obstacle is anything that gets in the path or your protagonist's goal, whether his or her ultimate goal in the book - to save the world before the bomb explodes, or his or her goal in the scene - to get a hot cup of coffee)

Hope to see you at one of my book stops.

Bob Dugoni

Here is the new video!