Friday, March 21, 2014


In this new age of publication, where indie authors are given more attention than ever, professional editors should not be neglected. Au contraire. My review of Origins by Eric Drouant illustrates this point. Indie authors, no matter how talented, should remember that even the most successful writers are edited by pros.

I bought this book because I was intrigued by the premise, that is how the US government, with a mad man in its midst, plans to use Cassie and Ronnie, two thirteen year olds gifted with psychic abilities. The occasional spelling and punctuation typos put aside, the structure of the novel could have gained power with additional revisions. Even if this is the first of a series where Drouant needs to introduce his characters, it takes a long time for the plot to really start. Had the novel begun with a slightly reworked Chapter 6, when the kids flee their respective home, the action would have picked up immediately, and all of what the reader needed to know about the gifted kids could have been given through informative flashbacks. Instead, a good part of the first half of Origins contains dead or repetitious moments. After that, and as soon as the police and the press enter the scene, the pace changes, even the style changes. Although following the same teenagers, it almost feels like a different novel. Frankly, that second half is where the thriller part happens. That’s where a professional editor could have helped and that’s why I can only give three stars to this novel, because only half of it is good.

Monday, March 10, 2014


SISSI (aka Simone): “What’s this? Some kind of barricade?”

MOM: “A border. You need to get a passport to cross it.”

SISSI: “Oh, yeah?”

MOM: “Some part of the population cannot go through, though.”

SISSI: “Such as?”

MOM: “Terrorists. And I mean a specific type of terrorists. The ones who enjoy terrorizing cats. Creature who like chocolate. And I mean a specific type of chocolate. Cat poop, for example.”

SISSI: “Oh, damn!”


SISSI: “There is another border on the other side.”

MOM: “Yeah.”

SISSI: “But that’s Coco’s (aka Colette) special bathroom over there!”

MOM: “You mean, what I and other people around here call the den.”


COCO: “Well, well, well. It seems my special bathroom is not accessible to me these days. Ha! See if I care! I’ve got my own special chair and my own special fire.”

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Writing Companion

I have a writing companion. He likes to travel on my lap when I write. At the moment, he’s perched on my arm and examining the laptop screen. His name is Beckett (yes, named after the great Sam). When he climbs on my shoulder, he likes to inspect my ears, or grab a piece of my hair and meticulously remove any sort of particle he may find there. Our internal dialogue goes approximately like this:

    “Hey,” I tell him, “it’s clean.”
    “Oh, yeah, how often do you wash your hair?”
    “Every other day.”
    “You dirtball! Do you see how often I wash mine? Like every hour or so?”
    “Those are feathers, you brat! You’re a damn parrot!”
    “I am cleaner than you are! I am cleaner than you are!”
    “Oh, yeah? Who just pooped on my pants!”
    “At least I didn’t poop in...”
    “Oh, shut up!”
    “Okay, I’ll just go back and clean your hair. When will you learn?”