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Many thanks to Neil who sent a txt to say that 3 WISE MEN had no title on the paperback spine. I replied that such an oversight might add to the book’s mystery in a bookcase.
Of course, having the title on the spine makes sense and the book will be much easier to find among others.
The new cover version will be available very soon on Amazon. Thanks for the feedback, Neil!
This wonderful comment came in from Andrea this morning. His help to navigate the charms of Milan during my research were invaluable and he assisted in reviewing the chapters that were located there.
“I was one of the people who couldn’t put the book down, but sometimes I forced myself to do so, to enjoy the plot better and let a part of it “sediment” in my memory before going on.
“I liked it very much, it’s a great story and it gives the feeling that there’s always something about to happen, but you don’t know what! I also liked the fact that some important characters were introduced almost at the end, while some others went out of scene: it gave a good sense of development of the story!
“Of course the part I enjoyed most is the one set in Milan: even if I read the chapters already, reading them in the complete story gave them more sense! Your description of the places is very accurate, and made me feel like I was there… I assume it’s the same with any other place in the book! Also, it’s great how you managed to fit so many facts about Milan in the narration! I’m happy to have given my small contribution to make the story more “real”, I hope that the readers would notice how accurate you were in this!”
I was at a lunch outing last Sunday with my wife and two friends, when someone I knew came up to our table and verbally accosted me about 3 WISE MEN. This is what he said,
“That book of yours – I can’t put it down!”
Of course, that is the sort of feedback that an author enjoys, but I was still surprised at his enthusiasm to share it with me – as well as other restaurant patrons. All I could say was “I’m sorry, but thank you.”
That kind of comment makes me want to write more!
Here’s how it works. You sign up to some fancy editing software (I use ProWritingAid for around $US40) and upload your manuscript. This automatically checks for grammatical errors, overused words, poor sentence connections, long paragraphs, etc. Here is one result – plagiarism – for 3 WISE MEN:
Such analytical processes are actually very helpful but should only be treated as a guide. In many cases (e.g. with foreign place names) the software does a poor job. However, you do need to get past the constant reminders and look at the corrections in context. Do the words and paragraphs still flow? Is the dialogue crisp?
In conclusion, online writing tools like these are fine, but there an “Art to Correction”!
It was a great conversation with a colleague over a recent lunch. We had both studied Geography at university and he mentioned the value of being able to view the world through a geographer’s eyes – looking at the landscape and how it was formed. I suddenly realized that this training had helped me connect different events to help construct the background details for 3 WISE MEN. Here is one example:
My wife and I were enjoying a late lunch in a piazza in Florence when we noticed a priest hurrying past. I could not resist a picture (below). When constructing details for the wider plot, it occurred to me that this innocent priest might play an important part.
“I had just left the Profumo-Farmaceutica di Santa Maria Novella, and was crossing the piazza outside the church when a priest approached me. He was obviously in a hurry as his cassock was waving wildly behind him. When he reached me, he paused and whispered, ‘I must see you urgently at the Statue of David at 7 o’clock tonight. Be there!’ Then he took off, heading for the hotel nearby. I was taken by surprise.” [extract, pg 192]
I am sure that readers will be equally surprised when they discover what the priest wanted to say to Pierre when he met him at The Statue of David!