A Very Good Year

Simon made me do it.

I had another post all set to go today but Simon’s post wrapping up
his year has compelled me to do my own, because I’m just, you know,
obsessive that way.

The thing is, I know a recount will be good for me.  I’m a
workaholic (oh, just admit it, THIS crowd?  You all so are too…).
I’m always focusing on what I NEED to do, rather than what I’ve done.
More than that, I beat myself up about what I haven’t done.   For a
non-Catholic, non-Jew, I have the guilt thing down to a science.

But when I look back on it, it really was an amazing year.   Let’s see now…

– My first novel, THE HARROWING,
was published by St. Martin’s Press in September.   Now, that alone is
a year’s worth, right?  I’m an author now.   And having lived a good
long time as a professional writer, slave to Hollywood, I can tell you
that author is something else, entirely.   

– I joined Sisters in Crime, Mystery Writers of America, Horror
Writers of America, Romance Writers of America and the International
Thriller Writers as a published author – and met hundreds of the most
incredible authors, readers, librarians, bookstore owners/staff, all
over the country.    (And let me tell you, the librarians have the best
parties of ALL…).

– I went to PLA in Boston, Malice Domestic in Arlington, ThrillerFest in Phoenix, BEA in DC, World Horror Con in San Francisco, ALA in New Orleans, Bouchercon
in Madison, World Fantasy Con in Austin, SIBA in Orlando, NCIBA in
Oakland, the LA Times Festival of Books in Los Angeles, Cape Fear Crime
Festival in Wilmington, Heather Graham’s Writers for New Orleans
in Paris (just kidding – I got to go to New Orleans again for that
one…).  I’m always saying I want more travel in my life – well, I’ve
got it now, in spades.

– I debuted with the Killer Thriller Band as
a Killerette and got to sing and dance with some of my all-time
favorite authors who are also kick-ass musicians.   Yes, I am a rock
star as a hobby.   Clearly I’m doing something right….

– I went on a nine-state book tour: North Carolina, South Carolina,
Georgia, Florida, California, Arizona, Louisiana, Texas and Wisconsin.
See travel fetish above.

– I finished my second novel, THE PRICE, also a supernatural thriller, which will be out from St. Martin’s at the end of 2007.

– I wrote my very first short story, “The Edge of Seventeen”, for THE DARKER MASK,
an illustrated anthology of, well, dark, superhero stories, which will
be out from Tor in January of 2008.   I am beyond thrilled with how it
came out and how fast and fun it was to write (I did a whole rough
draft on the plane from Raleigh to L.A.) and it made me realize that
there’s something to this short story thing after all.

WriterAction, the website
and union Town Hall I founded for professional screenwriters, hit 1900
members in our third year.   I am in my small way following in the
pro-union, Commie footsteps of giants: my idols Dorothy Parker and
Lillian Hellman.   The people united will never be defeated.

– I joined this horrifying, reprobate crowd at Murderati – the blog
I most wanted to be a part of but never dreamed I’d actually be asked.  Now THAT’S what I call a Christmas present!!

– I made the most amazing friends.  Truly.  I already have the most
amazing friends on the planet and now I have this whole new crop of
miraculous, witty, sexy, talented people in my life.   In one year I
feel completely part of this incredible mystery community – it’s like
family, and like heaven… and enough like hell to give it that edge,
you know?

I am so grateful.

And I am so ready for 2007.

And now I want to hear about your 2006!

Happy New Year to all…

Alex XX

19 thoughts on “A Very Good Year

  1. JT Ellison

    Happy New Year to you, Alex, and everyone here at Murderati!

    I haven’t started assimilating everything that happened this year. I may post about it at a later date if I can get my head around it.

    Hope everyone has fun tomorrow night!

  2. Alexandra Sokoloff

    It’s interesting to do an inventory – that’s why I made myself, yesterday (of course, I didn’t get into the personal – THAT’S too much on the day before the day before New Year’s Eve.

    But it made me more able to let this year go just to make a list. Now, of course, the dreaded New Year’s resolutions are hovering…

    Uh, no. I’ll think about that TOMORROW.

  3. billie

    Alex, what a dynamo you are! Your year has been big and busy, and I’m looking forward to that new book coming out in 2007!

    Today is my son’s 12th birthday so I’m sneaking up here to get my blog fix in before the party – not enough time to reflect in great detail on my own 2006, except to say that it feels to me like a year of readying and discovering some things about my books. They all have elements of suspense and mystery that I don’t think I have allowed myself to plumb deeply enough.

    It occurred to me this week that in my very young reader years in a small southern town, I read through the “age-appropriate” books in the library very quickly. The largest section in our little public library was mystery and suspense, and I clearly remember talking the librarian into letting me check out those “adult” books.

    I also clearly remember my mom having a copy of Rosemary’s Baby that she left lying around – I had a good start on it when she found me with it – took it away to my HUGE annoyance and said I could get it back when I turned 12. The first thing I asked for on my 12th birthday was a copy of that book so I could finish it. 🙂

    So in some ways I think I have some writing “roots” that need to be watered. I’ve been worried about my novels being so dark – but perhaps I’m just thinking of myself in the wrong genre. Anyway, this is what 2006 has been for me! Settling in to a new home/horse farm, writing in my home garret instead of my therapy office, and letting some good things simmer. I hope for 2007 they bubble right up to the top where I can make good use of them.

    Happy New Year to all – look forward to many great reads here in the coming year – both on Murderati and in the bookstores!


  4. Louise Ure

    Alex, you rocked as a Killerette! But that list of cons you attended this year would have driven me to my knees.

    Here’s to much happiness and success for us all in 2007!

  5. Philip Hawley

    Count me among those who are glad to get 2006 behind them. Tomorrow night, I hope to be snoring–softly, of course–by 9 pm.

    Here’s to 2007! May we fill it with good deeds and kindness.

  6. Alexandra Sokoloff

    Billie, ROSEMARY’S BABY has been one of the most influential books in my life. I read it first when I was eight or nine and I still read it every year or so. To me it is the perfect blend of psychology, human dynamics, sexuality, mystery, horror, suspense, and just life – in the most mesmerizing page turner I’ve ever picked up. Ira Levin was the first author I wrote to asking to read my book just because he was the most intimidating but only first choice. And he was the first one to respond, and so generously I’m still overwhelmed.

    GO for the dark side, baby. Don’t be afraid.Catharsis happens when we face our greatest darknesses and allow other people to face them vicariously through us. And there are plenty of the dark ones out there in the mystery genre! You are not alone.

    Happy birthday to your son! A 12-year old is a kick-ass accomplishment.

  7. Alexandra Sokoloff

    It’s an absolutely ridiculous list of cons, Louise – but I had a fantastic time at every single one, and I think in your first year or two of this author thing you need to try everything and see what’s out there and what’s going to work for you. Joe Konrath has some interesting thoughts on that – well, always! But today on his blog, too: http://jakonrath.blogspot.com/

    I’m afraid I’m going to do just as many this year, but now it’s a question of addiction.

    Oh well. At least it’s a USEFUL addiction.

  8. Elaine Flinn

    I’ll ditto Phil – and just add – 2006 will always have a fond place in my memories. New friends (Phil, Alex, John Hart, J.T., our Mike here at Murderati – the list goes on!)And then of course – being a part of Murderati has to be one of the highlights. And-having Guyot & Louise with us is…well, icing on the cake.

    So, gang – Happy New Year! May 2007 be a year of good health, happiness and random acts of kindness.

  9. pari noskin taichert

    Alex,What an astounding year you’ve had.

    It’s almost scary to think that 2007 might be even better for us all.

    I think Simon’s post inspired me, too. I’ll be looking at 2006 and forward on Monday.

  10. billie

    Alex, wow re: getting a quote from Ira Levin! I had not noticed that on the back of your book. I think I need to re-read Rosemary’s Baby as part of my new year’s resolution to connect some dots.

    Do you know about Weymouth here in NC? It’s a grand old southern home that was lived in by a writer James Boyd, and now it’s available for NC writers to use for writing residencies of up to 2 weeks/year. It’s haunted! I don’t know if that has something to do with it being under-used – but I’m going there for a long weekend in a few weeks – you should apply and come on down! I have done some of my best writing there. I love it.

    Thanks for the line about my 12-year old. 🙂 He is a force – very smart, creative, loves TV and film, music, analytical mind, special effects… I see him in Hollywood in, oh, 15 years. We’ll see. 🙂


  11. Tom, T.O.

    Dear Favorite Killerette (yes, I say that to ALL the Killerettes–both of them),2006 WAS a good year, but the highlight for me had to be my first ‘-con,’ or, in this case, ‘-fest’–“Thrillerfest,” that is, where I met you, Robin, James Rollins, Clive, and so many others, and got to know a few more (Louise, David M., Doug P., Bob L., Gayle, and others) a little better. I can’t imagine a more perfect event than “Thrillerfest I,” and I’m planning on being at #2.What a page-turner you wrote; now I know why we were never allowed to play with Ouija boards when we were kids. Looking forward to your # 2 as well.

    The Santa-bearded wine guy

  12. Alexandra Sokoloff

    Tom, how great to see you here! So glad you got into the book, and (on behalf of all the Killerettes) I’m delighted to hear you’ll be at TF 2. I know we’re going to have an even better time this year.

    Gandalf suits you better than Santa, though.



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