Sunday, 13 April 2014

Harlan Coben Event at Leeds Waterstones - 10th April 2014

Hi Guys

How you all - sorry haven't blogged for a while but haven't done much writing as was thinking of giving writing up but seeing Harlan may have persuaded me to keep at it.

Harlan for those that don't know is an American crime novelist.
He was a very funny guy and tall at six foot four.  He was doing a tour for his new novel "Missing You".
The part he read was very good and funny.  I'm also ashamed to admit I haven't read any of Harlan's novels and think I will do in the near future as the sample chapters I read on my Kindle were excellent and I wanted to read more.

Harlan started by saying he was glad to be with fellow Leeds people as he was born in Leeds, New Jersey and I realised early on he was more talking about how he writes and what inspires him to write more than his actual books which was good for fellow writers like myself.

Harlan admitted anything can set off ideas for his books from the tabloids to reading a sentence somewhere. An example of a sentence he thought up to start one of his novels is-
"When the first bullet hit my chest I thought of my daughter."

He also advised writing a novel is like a sausage - you like the end taste but don't know how its made - meaning lots of editing blood, sweat and tears.

Harlan also advised he how he lost his parents at a young age.  He also admitted he does no or very little research for his novels as he thinks writers should just write and research is just an excuse not to write.  He doesen't put too many facts in his work as wants to get on with plot and action.

He also thinks up the ending and beggining of his novels then works out the middle part and joins them all up.

Harlan also did a question and answer section after his talk here are some of the other things he said in relation to the the Q & A session.

He always feels fear and excitement when writing a novel as always fearful the readers will enjoy his book and advised when a writer stops doubting themselves then they will be no good as will just coast through a book when writing it and the nervous energy would be gone.

It takes Harlan about nine months to write a book and described it to being like a pregnancy - a good idea at the beginning but near the end you just want it out and admitted he writes the last fifity to hundred pages in the last month to get it finished.  He also can do this as he knows the ending of a novel so well.

He trusts his publishers on the cover designs of his novels but if he doesn't like will put some input in and for nearly each country the novels are published in they have different covers - some polish fans showed their books for everyone to see which looked bit weird.

Harlan admitted he likes to read alot when he gets the chance but doesn't re-read books incase the experience changes on the next read.
He also said he dosen't do blurbs for other peoples works as a friend asked him to do a blurb for his manuscript and it was Dan Brown who took the number one spot in book charts for months whilst Harlan's was stuck at number two in the charts.

Overall a very good night although bit miffed it was just under an hour although nearly all stayed on to chat to him and get books signed including a couple of lovely ladies sat next to me who had travelled all the way from Scarborough - hope they reading this as I gave them my blog address.

Till next time guys x

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