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A Novel Idea

I only golf with my kids occasionally. I hardly ever scuba dive these days. My tennis partner is having issues with his vision. What I’m getting at is, I have time to write. I’ve been toying with three different directions to go with my next novel. I’m curious what you think would be the best bet. Or, what you would want to read. I’m dying to get some direction.


Lately, I’ve been writing (mostly) books for all ages. This book idea would be in that same vein. It’s the story of two teenage brothers with no mother (she left?), and an inventor for a father—who is obsessed with working on his off-the-books pet project, all the while ignoring them. While he’s at work (at a tech company, his day job) the boys steal his invention—without truly knowing its capabilities. The invention is a smart phone that looks somewhat like a regular iPhone, except it has phenomenal features and functions. When you use the map app, it literally transports you to that spot. This super phone also allows you to access and listen to everyone else’s phone. It opens any lock, tracks other people, and includes a contact list with people in very high places who can be called on to help. You can see heat signatures through walls and withdraw any amount of money from the bank, without leaving a trace. It’s like Harry Potter and Hermione’s wand . . . in a phone. When the brothers grab the prototype and us it, others want the invention for nefarious reasons, and chase the boys—willing to kill them to get what they want. All the boys want the phone for is to find their mom and convince her to come back.


This one is much easier to describe than the first novel idea. It’s about two empty-nesters who sell everything to buy a sailboat and travel around the world—along the way they’ll have all kinds of adventures and misadventures. They meet interesting people, work odd jobs at tropical locales, and probably get into some trouble along the way. As you can see, this could be quite a ride.


Mark Twain advises writers to write what they know about. I’ve covered just about everything I could be considered an “expert” on (or at least I have experienced myself) except . . . being a musician. I was thinking about writing the story of a rock star who was a one-hit wonder and struggled mightily after that. Then . . . suddenly his song is used in a movie and a commercial—thankfully he’s in demand again. What happens next is yet to be determined, but it could be interesting. It’s the story of Jimmy Buffett if he only recorded Margaritaville and then stopped.

Which would you prefer to read?

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