We are Family

Here’s the latest from my sisters Linda Woods and Karen Dinino, authors of the new blockbuster art/journaling book VISUAL CHRONICLES.  We’re taking our family act on the road next month…but I’ll let them tell you about it:

We’ve been getting many emails about where we will be doing workshops and book signing events in the next few months.

You can meet us, eat cake, and get your book signed on

Thursday, March 23rd at Borders in Westwood,
California, from 7-9 P.M.. There will be books for sale at Borders, but if you’ve already got it, just bring it along. Rumor has it that some of the contributing artists will also be there with us this special
night~ our first Southern California book signing!

Sunday, April 30th we’ll be signing our book at the Borders booth at the LA Times Festival of Books   with our brothers,  Tod  and Lee Goldberg
(who will be signing their own books). Here’s the thing- if you love Tod and Lee or just Tod or just Lee, you’ll LOVE us. If you can’t stand either one of them, we’re nothing like them and you’ll still
love US. We either are or aren’t  just like them depending on whether or not you find them at all entertaining.  Chances are if you love US, you’ll really like them, or at least Tod.

We may even sing show tunes…or at least the theme from THE PARTRIDGE FAMILY. Karen and Linda will be teaching our journaling workshop in Portland, Oregon,
this summer…more details coming soon. They’ll also be scheduling more Southern California signings as well as events in
Seattle and Northern California.


BONES may just be the most unusual notion for an tie-in novel since THE SPY WHO LOVED novelization (a novel based on the movie based on the book by Ian Fleming). BONES: BURIED DEEP is an original novel by Max Allan Collins based on the Fox Television Series BONES created by Hart Hanson featuring the character created by Kathy Reichs from her best-selling series of novels. Whew. I’m winded just typing that.

What I don’t get is why Kathy Reichs a) allowed the studio to shop tie-in novels based on the series based on her books while she’s still writing books in the series herself (and her old titles are still in print) and b) why, if the tie-in books were going to be done, she didn’t do them herself. Isn’t the whole idea behind selling your book to TV to boost sales of the books? It would seem to me that authorizing original tie-in novels would actually work against Reichs’ best interests. On the other hand, the format of TV series and the tie-in novel, while featuring the central character from Reichs’ books, differs substantially from the books from which they are derived.

It’s very interesting to me and I’m eager to get the scoop from Max (who, by the way, also writes the CSI novels and is co-founder, with yours truly, of the International Association of Media Tie-in Writers.

Point of Impact

Variety reports that Mark Wahlberg will in SHOOTER, the movie version of Stephen Hunter’s POINT OF IMPACT, the first in his popular, long-running series of novels about a master sniper named Swagger (and several prequels about Swagger’s father). Antoine Fugua will direct with a script by Jonathan Lemkin. The film has been kicking around Hollywood for a while now. It was originally developed as a vehicle for Keanu Reeves and, before that, Robert Redford.

I’ve read most of Hunter’s books, and while POINT OF IMPACT is one of his best, I think my favorite novel of his is DIRTY WHITE BOYS.

iBooks Lightbulb Burns Out

I’ve heard from several authors with deals at iBooks that the publishing company, which was run by the late Byron Preiss, has declared bankruptcy and is folding. This puts many upcoming releases in doubt and quite a few authors I know are very worried about the status of the rights to their unpublished books (not to mention if they will ever see the royalties on their past titles for the company). It’s sad news all around.

At Least It Wasn’t a One-Armed Man

A $1 million Ferrari was totalled in a race on PCH last night.  The owner of the car, a Swedish millionaire, fled the scene and was found wandering in a canyon. He claimed he wasn’t driving the car…but that someone he knew only as "Dietrich" was behind the wheel.

One witness told deputies that the Ferrari appeared
to be racing with a Mercedes-Benz SLR northbound along the coastal
highway when the accident occurred about 6 a.m. west of Decker Road.

"It took out the pole, and part of the car went another 600 feet,"
Sheriff’s Sgt. Philip Brooks said. "There were 1,200 feet of debris out

Eriksson told authorities that "Dietrich" ran up a hill
toward the canyon road and disappeared. Brooks said detectives are far
from convinced they have the whole story.

Eriksson "had a .09
blood-alcohol level, but if he’s a passenger, that’s OK," Brooks said.
"But he had a bloody lip, and only the air bag on the driver’s side had
blood on it. The passenger-side air bag did not. My Scooby-Doo
detectives are looking closely into that.

Better Late than Never

Lots of old pilots are being dusted off and redeveloped this season. The latest is  THE WEDDING ALBUM, which Fox passed on five years ago… and is now greenlighting as a pilot again. Variety reports that VP Craig Erwich has always loved the script, about a NY wedding photographer and his assistant who attempt to find romance in their own
lives while shooting the weddings of others, and was just waiting for the right time to resurrect it. If it was about a crime scene photographer, or one of them talked to God, it could have been shopped to CBS years ago.

Another Day, Another BADGE Review

If you’re a regular visitor here, then you’re familiar with Chadwick H. Saxelid, a frequent commenter on my posts and a man whose unusual name I have borrowed (with his permission, of course) for a murder victim in DIAGNOSIS MURDER: THE DOUBLE LIFE (coming in November 2006). Today, he reviews THE MAN WITH THE IRON-ON BADGE on his blog. He says, in part:

Lee Goldberg’s The
Man With the Iron-On Badge
is a fun little page turner that, on more than one occasion,
reminded me of Parnell Hall’s Stanley Hastings series.  Like Stanley Hastings,
what Harvey Mapes thinks he knows about private detective work comes entirely
from television shows and crime novels.  (Goldberg’s novel references so many
different television shows and/or books that it almost qualifies as an exercise
in metafiction.)  Unlike
Stanley, when Harvey gets in over his head he finds an inner reserve of strength
and character that he never even knew existed within him.  (Stanley usually
makes an ass out of himself, or he just gets lucky.)

But Mapes amateurish fumbling and on-the-case training are just sly
misdirections on Goldberg’s part.  While the reader is distracted by Mapes’s
growth from junk food guzzling slacker to junk food guzzling detective, all the
clues are artfully dropped.  Another trick is how The
Man With the Iron-On Badge
manages to spoof private detective story cliches
while letting Mapes discover that the reality of amateur detecting isn’t all
that different from what is on TV or in books, after all.

Thanks, Chadwick. Now I’m sorry I killed you.

God Is A Bullet…and a Movie

I found this nugget in Variety today…Nick Cassavetes is writing and directing an adaptation of Boston Teran’s novel GOD IS A BULLET.  You may recall that Boston Teran is a pseudonym … reportedly for a well-known mystery author who wanted to try a different voice.  While GOD IS A BULLET generated some heat, the follow-up book didn’t.

BADGE is So Good

Gerald So, an editor at the Thrilling Detective website, recommended THE MAN WITH THE IRON-ON BADGE on his blog yesterday. He wrote, in part:

Goldberg’s clever premise allows him to present a refreshingly un-macho hero to whom any fan of the P.I. mystique can relate. Facing the hard realities behind private eye genre cliches, Harvey believably discovers truths about the case and about himself.

Gerald is big fan of Robert Parker’s Spenser, and runs the Spenser discussion group, so I was especially pleased that he enjoyed the book. I was also thrilled to discover that Harvey Mapes got his own listing in Thrilling Detective’s list of literary PIs.

From now on, it’s Diet Coke, No Ice.

A 12-year-old compared bacteria levels in ice samples from five
restaurants in South Florida with toilet water samples from the same
The toilet water was cleaner. From ABC News:

Jasmine Roberts never expected her award-winning middle school science
project to get so much attention. But the project produced some
disturbing results: 70 percent of the time, ice from fast food
restaurants was dirtier than toilet water.