The Lion continues to sell well, and I thank all of you who’ve bought it and kept it on the bestseller lists.
I also want to thank everyone who e-mailed me through my website. A few people asked me to clarify the ending of The Lion. One lady wrote that she and her husband were on the verge of divorce arguing about the ending. I helped her out by emailing her the name of a good divorce lawyer.
A number of e-mailers have asked me to read their manuscripts, and/or tell them how to get their book published. I wish I knew. I don’t even know how I got published the first time. You might try changing your main character into a vampire. Or make up some endorsements from recently dead authors. Like, “Best damn vampire romance I’ve ever read — Stieg Larsson.” Or, “This coming-of-age vampire novel really sucks — J. D. Salinger.” You get the idea. Good luck.
A lot of people have e-mailed me that they have a great story to tell — like the inside scoop on the upholstery business — but they can’t write, and they’d like me to write their story for them. As tempting as this is, my publishing contract clearly states in Paragraph 3, “The author (DeMille) has such a huge ego and is so difficult to work with that a collaboration with another author is all but impossible.” Sorry.
On another subject, I’ve read a few great books this spring and summer and I’d like to recommend them: First, In the Name of Honor by bestselling author Richard North Patterson. In one of Stephen King’s books he has a character say, “Patterson and DeMille are probably the best of the current popular novelists.” I agree with Stephen on this and I hope you will, too.
I love it when I “discover” a new writer, and one of the best first novels I’ve read in years is Think of a Number by John Verdon. This is truly a great read and you won’t be disappointed.
Also, I’m reading a great anthology of spy stories, Agents of Treachery, edited by Otto Penzler, who is a good friend who paid me to say this.
Finally, The Charm School, by me. In this book you will see many uncanny similarities to the current Russian spy case, i.e. sleeper agents trained in Russia to talk and act like Americans, then sent here to spy. I’m not the only one to notice this similarity; many of you have emailed me about this, plus many print articles about this case have mentioned The Charm School, as have many commentators on radio and TV. So, life imitates art imitates life. Did I Get my book idea from the Russians? Or did they get their spying idea from my book? You be the judge.
The reviewers have been kind to The Lion, with one reviewer comparing it (in length) to War and Peace, and another to Gone with the Wind for the same reason. Several astute reviewers compared The Lion to The Lion’s Game which makes sense because The Lion is the sequel to The Lion’s Game. Right?
I did get some snarky reviews from online readers/reviewers, complete with errors in grammar, punctuation, spelling, and plot points. Many of these reviewers stated, “I won’t buy any more DeMille books.” Thank you.
The good thing about a publicity tour is that I get to meet readers and bookstore people
who are very enthusiastic about my books. I did get some heckling at one bookstore, however. As I was talking, a voice said, “What’s he talking about? Why is he talking so much?” The heckler was my three-year old son, who was with my wife, and who clearly wanted to be somewhere else. My son, I mean — not my wife. I responded to him, as I always do, “Pipe down, little man.” And he replied, as he always does, “No, you pipe down.” That got a few laughs and I banished him to the children’s book section.
This is my last Newsletter for the summer, and after Labor Day I go back to a full writing schedule. I hope everyone is having a wonderful summer and that you’re reading great books.
John Corey has asked me to pass on his regards and his thanks for your support, and his advice for the summer. “Get yourself a cold beer, a hot book, and a pound of sliced baloney for edible bookmarks. Life is good.”
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