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Tuesday, 3 August 2010

Sue Grafton's Advice for Writers: Put in the Time


Five books from the end of her alphabet series, Sue Grafton says it doesn’t get any easier—and there’s always another lesson to learn about the ABCs of writing.

"What was I thinking? I ask myself that to this day,” says Sue Grafton, her Southern lilt wrapped inside a laugh, of her 26-book alpha-murder mystery series-in-progress. Having begun with A Is for Alibi in 1982, and averaging a book every two years, she’s now five letters away from the culmination, likely to be titled Z Is for Zero.

Born in Louisville, Ky., Grafton is the daughter of attorney and novelist C.W. Grafton. She began her professional life as a screenwriter for TV movies—until somebody told her agent she knew how to write character but not plot. Grafton was furious. “I said to myself, ‘Oh, you want plot? I will teach myself how to plot.’ ” She decided the mystery novel was the best avenue.

Diana Page Jordan

More here (courtesy Writer's Digest)

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