25 March 2014

My First Farewell Post


by Terence Faherty

This post ends my year and my career as a regular contributor to the SleuthSayers blog, though I'll be available to pinch-hit whenever one of the group needs a break.  I'd like to thank Leigh Lundin and Robert Lopresti for giving me this opportunity and for their patience while I learned (but never mastered) the software.  I'd also like to thank the other writers on the blog for their encouragement and comments, especially Dale C. Andrews, with whom I've shared Tuesdays (and the daunting job of preparing the retrospective posts for SleuthSayers' second anniversary).  I hope to actually meet Dale someday, maybe at a baseball game. 

In place of blogging, I'm going to be devoting more time to promoting a new book, The Quiet Woman, which will be published by Five Star in June.  It's quite a departure for me, as it's my first stand-alone mystery and my first comic/romantic/supernatural one, at least in book form.  (I now see some of my Alfred Hitchcock stories as baby steps in that direction.) I'll write more about The Quiet Woman closer to its release, if my replacement will relinquish a Tuesday.  That replacement, incidentally, is David Dean, a man who needs no introduction to regular SleuthSayers readers, since he's the writer I replaced one year ago.  He's spent that year working on a new book, about which I hope he'll write in this space.

I'm sorry that so few of my twenty-odd posts had to do with mystery writing and that so many were about old movies and forgotten actors and authors, though many of my favorite posts by other contributors have also wandered far in the subject matter field.  Many of these favorites have been magazine quality, in my opinion, both in terms of writing and word count.  The latter I attribute to good time management, something at which I've never excelled, as the following account of my approach to blog writing, inspired by Eve Fisher's recent Robert Benchley post, will demonstrate.

As near as I can reconstruct, my two-week blog-writing cycle has gone something like this.

Through the miracle of Blogger.com, my column appears on a Tuesday.  All is right with the world.  I can hold my head up in any gathering of productive human beings, though I can't remember the last time I attended such a gathering.  This happy glow stays with me until Thursday, when it's eclipsed by the bright rays of the approaching weekend.

Sometime during that weekend, I panic, until a quick check of my desk calendar confirms that the looming Tuesday belongs to Dale Andrews.  Sure enough, Dale's column appears as if by magic on the appointed day.  It might even give me an idea for a post of my own.  If it doesn't, no problem.  I have a week to work one out.

A week being much more time than I need, I don't actually use the whole thing.  That would be wasteful.  In fact, I spend so much of my week not being wasteful that, before I know it, another weekend arrives.  Sometime late on Sunday, I wonder, idly, what Dale will write about this week.  Maybe he's traveling down south again.  He seems to travel more than John Kerry.  That's the life, escaping the cold snow for the warm sand and trading juncos for sanderlings.  I can almost hear the waves. . .

I awake in a cold sweat with the realization that the approaching Tuesday, whose skirmishers are even now topping the nearest hill, is my Tuesday.  To arms!  To arms! 

Okay, maybe that isn't exactly how my average fortnight has gone, but it's close enough that just recounting it has caused my heart to race.  When it settles down, I'll get to work on a new book, following Mr. Dean's example.  In the meantime, thanks very much for visiting.

15 comments:

Fran Rizer said...

Terence, I've enjoyed your posts this past year and hate to see you go, but I certainly understand the need to promote that book, which I intend to read. Your replacement, David Dean, is welcome, but I wish we could have both of you!

Jan Grape said...

I'll miss you also, Terry. I seldom comment on posts. I always intend to, but time gets away after reading. But I've enjoyed reading about actors and other authors. I also don't write about writing much, although I try to tie writing in somewhere in the last paragraph. In meantime I'll bid you a fond farewell just for now. Good luck on the promo and the work on the next.book. And a welcome back to David Dean. And you, Mr. Terrence Flaherty...hurry back, okay?

Terence Faherty said...

Thanks, Fran and Jan. I have a few extra ARCs for THE QUIET WOMAN. If you're interested in reading it, get my e-mail from Rob and send me a mailing address.

Leigh Lundin said...

I certainly enjoyed your posts, Terry, and I confess to that same panic when that deadline rolls around!

Others will likely say "Terry, we hardly knew ye…" but it's been a pleasure having you on board. We look forward to The Quiet Woman.

David Dean said...

Your posts have been a real pleasure, Terry. Sadly for my return, the bar has been raised. So, I'll be working hard to lower it once more to a level I'm more comfortable with. Notice I ended that last sentence with a preposition, and that's just for openers.

Very best of luck with "The Quiet Lady." I hope this time next year you're in the winners circle at the Edgars with her.

John Floyd said...

It's been great having you here, Terry. I look forward to your guest posts, when you have time.

Best of luck with the new book!

John Floyd said...

It's been great having you here, Terry. I look forward to your guest posts, when you have time.

Best of luck with the new book!

Dale Andrews said...

Well, David needn't worry about that bar. As a Tuesday stalwart I am keeping it low!

Terry -- it's been great sharing Tuesdays with you (even those anguished weeks -- alluded to in your post -- when we were assembling those anniversary columns). Your column today is one I wish I had written -- the ebb and flow of fortnightly column writing is perfectly said. Your columns have always risen to the challenge -- great stuff, and I sure hope we find more offerings in the future.

And otherwise, welcome back David! Mr. Dean and I go way back -- well, at least to 2007 when he edged me out by one (count it, one) vote for the EQMM Readers' Choice award. But I bear no grudge -- so long as you keep posting every second week, that is!

Eve Fisher said...

We'll miss you, Terry - and I'm looking forward to reading "The Quiet Woman"!

Terence Faherty said...

Thanks for the good wishes, folks, especially regarding The Quiet Woman. I'm anxious to see the real book.

Elizabeth Zelvin said...

Sorry to see you go, Terence. Lovely book cover, btw. And welcome back to David!

R.T. Lawton said...

Terry, thanks for sharing your words and your mind with us for the last year.I'll look forward to seeing more of you in the future.

Dixon Hill said...

I'm gonna miss Tuesday with Terry. Gotta say I really enjoyed your movie and book comments, and hope to see more when you have time.

Best wishes for top NYT ratings with The Quiet Woman, buddy!

Janice Law said...

Very best of luck with The Quiet Woman.
Your enthusiasm for the genre and for good movies will be missed.

Jeff Baker said...

Terry, all the best! I've enjoyed your words here!