Challenge,  On Writing,  publishing

Just Finished… The Lonely Silver Rain

By John D. MacDonald…

It was the last Travis McGee novel, published a year before MacDonald’s death in 1986.

I think I have read it six or seven times now over the years, always taken in by how MacDonald did Travis. I have typed in so many parts of those books, studying the style, the simpleness of it, yet how complex and clear he wrote.

At some point I will try a character like Travis. Someday. In the meantime, I practice a lot of what MacDonald did on my Cold Poker Gang series.

And speaking of that, the new Cold Poker Gang series book is nearing an end, I hope. I am slightly past the 20 days I had scheduled for it, but consider everything going on in the last twenty days, and setting up the new habit of writing in the morning. I am very, very happy with the pace.

Habits are very powerful in regular life and writing. Stunningly powerful. Breaking any old habit and replacing it with a new one has been proven to be difficult and takes time. I was even standing in B&N tonight, browsing a book about habits. And nodding my head a great deal.

So very happy I have the habit now of writing in the morning.


Some updates on stuff this week since it is Friday night.

— I have one opening for a writer who would like me to mentor them for the next year, from April 1st to April 1st. Write me if interested.

— Kris has opened up a monthly webinar with her live called Ask Kris Anything. You can sign up for that on Teachable. It will start in April.

— Still taking sign-ups for the new Emotion workshop. But please don’t sign up for it if you haven’t had the depth workshop at least. All of it on Teachable.

— And, of course, the April Regular workshops start up on Tuesday on Teachable.  Here is the list.

Class #31… Apr 2nd … Endings
Class #32… Apr 2nd … Point of View
Class #33… Apr 2nd … Writing Mysteries
Class #34… Apr 2nd … Speed
Class #35… Apr 2nd … Teams in Fiction
Class #36… Apr 3rd … Depth in Writing
Class #37… Apr 3rd … How to Use Tags
Class #38… Apr 3rd … Character Development
Class #39… Apr 3rd… Information Flow
Class #40… Apr 3rd … Emotion in Writing


  • robert bucchianeri

    I’ve read all 21 of the Travis McGee series at least once, a few more than that, including the Lonely Silver Rain. A great inspiration. My mystery series is a loose homage to Travis. One of the greats.

  • Cora

    When I was in university, I lived next to a used book store. That’s where I discovered John D MacDonald. It was always fun to find an old one I didn’t have yet, or to pick through the influx of the traded-ins of new releases. Some people take such good care of their books, it was easy enough to fine one in pristine condition. So all of my Travis McGee books were bought used, but are only starting to look it because I’ve been through them a number of times.

  • Deb Miller

    I haven’t read John D. MacDonald in years. I need to re-read those again! Thanks for reminding me.

    On habits, I did many hours of driving this week, so listened to an audio book called Atomic Habits. Nothing earth-shattering, nothing really new, some of it kind of boring. But, there were a few points that resonated and made me think of you, Dean. For example, one chapter emphasized practice. He also talked about streaks. I’ve been doing a streak with meditation, which has turned it into a habit. Now I need to add a streak with writing.

    Hope you and Kris are doing well. See you soon!

  • P.D. Singer

    I remember a rumor about John D. MacDonald having one last Travis McGee book, one with black in the title, that would come out after MacDonald’s death, and possibly have the death of Travis. I watched for years for that book, and now am glad to never have a finite ending, even for one last glimpse of Travis..

    Meyer’s Law has been an important factor in my life.

  • jaran

    One thing about the Travis McGee books I never understood is why the woman/side characters seem so off like they have no voice of their own. I end up just skimming or ignoring the other characters in the book. It’s weird.

    Guy was a master, but I often wonder what he does that causes me to ignore the other characters? Maybe it’s just me.

    I have noticed this in just about every McGee book I have read (up to 8 now).