Origins of the Poe Book

I have been a writer, a scribe, a man of letters, a guy who puts words on paper for as long as I can remember. I have been a reporter (for about a million years) and a fiction writer since around 2012. I denote that special year because that was when I completed Alabama Stories, a collection of short stories about my years in my native Cotton state. It got some good reviews and won a couple awards. That was encouraging. Then I floundered through the next eight years writing all manner of different fictional genres. There was romance, a book about tabloid reporting, a murder mystery, a romantic comedy, several horror stories and ghosts and the supernatural, two novellas of family fiction and a couple of romantic sci-fi yarns. The sales were okay, but not as good as I would have liked. Finally, in the fall of 2018, I undertook to write a biographical novel about the life of Edgar Allan Poe. I had been a big fan of Poe since the eighth-grade when I first read the words: “For the moon never beams without bringing me dreams of the beautiful Annabel lee; and the stars never rise but I feel the bright eyes…” At the time, I thought those were the most beautiful words of poetry I had ever read.” Further, I felt he would be a good subject I could relate to since we were both Southerners, he a Virginian and I an Alabamian. In late June of 2020, two months shy of two years, the novel about Poe’s life, A Quiet Madness, was completed. After my editor read the manuscript, she said: “You have found your niche! The only thing you should ever write is biographical novels.” And she was right. I had a wonderful time writing the book and it has sold well. Now, I’m in the middle of my second biographical novel which has a working title of A Sagebrush Soul: a biographical novel of Samuel Langhorne Clemens, also known as Mark twain. That book is about 55 per cent written. I’m not sure how long it will take me but I’m shooting for this fall. The Poe book took me almost two years to research and write it. On the other hand, Mark Twain’s life experiences were much more varied and expansive than Poe’s, so I think it will probably take me a little longer. Like I said I’m shooting for this fall to complete it. Will keep you posted!