Yesterday morning I emerged from the MRT (subway/underground) only to find a virtual wall of police and police dogs at the stairs and more police at ground level. Another coup? I wondered. I asked one of the motorcycle taxi drivers what was going on. They often prove to be the most reliable source of information. The driver knows me. He smiled, “George Boossh.” He made the name “Bush” sound like air escaping from a punctured tire and delivered with the famous Thai smile showing no hint of irony. Seems the President was on this way to Father Joe’s Mercy Centre in Kong Toey, and later the President delivered a speech at Queen Sirkit Centre across the street from where I live.
· Progress continues on Calvino #11. I aim to write 2,000 words a day for the first draft. Some days I hit the target, other days I fall short on the word count. I have a reasonably good outline. The emphasis is on reasonable. If I were driving from Bangkok to Chiang Mai, and the outline were my map, I’ve got the road mapped as far as Ayutthaya. In other words, I’ve got a long ways to go and need to figure out the roads as I go along. The risk is getting lost. But this is the only way I know how to write a novel. It has worked before. Hopefully the first draft will be done in three months.
This Spirit House continues to occupy the #1 slot on Amazon/Kindle beating The Lace Reader, Moscow Rules, The Last Patriot, Rules of Deception, and a bookshelf of Stephenie Meyer’s vampire books. There is a distinct advantage: Spirit House is a free download for Kindle owners and the promotion last until 15th August. On 16th August, once money must change for the right to download Spirit House I plan to be wearing a parachute to cushion to fall from the K2 of booksellers’ highest mountain.
· Thomas Schmid’s profile titled Introducing Bangkok’s seamy side appeared on Sunday 3rd August in the Macau Daily Times.
· The Heaven Lake Press edition of PAYING BACK JACK is scheduled for release in Thailand (only) in December 2008. The Grove/Atlantic edition will appear in the autumn of 2009 in the rest of the world.
· For those needing a fix for fiction set in Southeast Asia, check out Timothy Hallinan’s The Fourth Watcher It earned a starred review from Publisher’s Weekly and the reader’s comments on Amazon all agree this is a very strong. One reader said, “It is a finely tuned, spinning tale that spans several subplots converging to form a powerful, explosive ending every reader will thrill to experience!” Also not to be missed is Colin Cotterill’s Curse of the Pogo Stick Colin’s series starring 70s plus Laotian forensic investigator Dr. Paiboun has found a large international audience and the New York Times said, “Wonderfully fresh and exotic.”