I’m Done!

I just this minute finished writing the final draft of MR. MONK AND THE BLUE FLU, my third book in the series, and had to tell somebody (everybody in my house is asleep already). I’m a week ahead of my deadline, so I will probably set the manuscript aside for a day or two and then read it again to make sure everything tracks. Or I may simply turn it in and be done with it.  Regardless, I won’t do anything with it until Monday.

The timing is perfect, because Bill Rabkin and I are about to start writing a freelance script for a hot new TV series (more on that later) and I won’t have to worry about finishing the book, too. I do have to start thinking about my eighth DIAGNOSIS MURDER book, though, which is due in three-and-a-half months…

So tomorrow I’ll do my little book-completion ritual. I’ll put my Murder Book (my binder of notes, outlines, photos, etc. related to the book) in a box in the closet and clean up my office, which tends to go to hell while I’m writing.

12 thoughts on “I’m Done!”

  1. So do you EVER sleep, Lee? You put workaholics to shame. What’s the secret and where can I get some? Congrats!

  2. Lee, you are a writing machine! COngrats on making the deadline. Treat yourself to some time off and enjoy a break.
    Is another Harvey Mapes book in the works?

  3. You have finished a project ONE WEEK ahead of frackin’ schedule.
    Okay, God knows I’ve tried to put you up on a pedestal in an entirely manly, straight way.
    But that… that’s it. You are a CYLON, you are a machine. Admit it.

  4. Thank you, everyone. For some reason, it felt like this book was taking forever to write, but it was only 90 days. Maybe it’s because the writing was interrupted during that time by trips to New York (to write a MONK script), Hawaii (to speak at eight libraries about screenwriting) and a cruise to Mexico (to talk about TV and mystery writing) during which I didn’t get much, if any, work on the book done.
    As far as another Harvey Mapes, that isn’t in my future at this point…unless I sell mass-market rights to THE MAN WITH THE IRON-ON BADGE, and get a contract for a sequel.
    I have agreed to write three more MONK novels … the eighth DIAGNOSIS MURDER book is the last one in my current contract, so I don’t know yet whether I will be writing more of those.

  5. Congrats!!!
    Lee, I’m sure you’ve been asked this countless times before, but do you outline much before you begin a new novel? Do you have it all pretty much figured out before you start the actual writing?
    Thanks and congrats again!

  6. Hey, I finished MY book a week ahead of deadline, too! We must be, er, cyber twins?
    It was nice to have a few days to set it aside, and not think about it, before I did the final read through. Now, on to the next one…

  7. Yes, Bud, I do outline. Not in extensive detail, but the major beats and clues. That said, my outlines are constantly evolving as I wrote the book. I call them living outlines… as I deviate from what I intend, I have to adjust the outline and replot what’s coming. I complete my outline roughly the same time that I finish the book!

  8. Congrats!
    And they’d better give you another DM contract. I am discovering just how addicted I am to these books while finally getting to #6.

  9. Is the “hot” in “hot new show” a clue? If so, are you working on a script for (Stan and) Tony and Paul’s new show?

  10. Nope, I’m not working on FLAMER or TORCH or whatever that superheroine show is that Tony Blake & Paul Jackson are doing for Lifetime… at least not yet!


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