East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai


Leaving Shanghai for a while

GoddamnedShanghai1I’ve been too long in Shanghai – in my head, at least.
The research and the writing of my book have caused me to spend many hours, daily, thinking about Shanghai in the ’30s, reading about Shanghai in the ’30s, writing about Shanghai in the ’30s.
Lucky me, only the first half of the novel takes place in that city*.

I realized I need to take a break from Shanghai two or three days back, as I sat down to read a novel called – you guessed it – Shanghai. Continue reading

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Working at a collaborative novel

So I’ve finished my novel – what now?
Quite simply – I’m working on the next one.

Starting this weekend, I am working on a collaboration with a young writer, a kid of twenty five that has a 40.000 words science fiction novel first draft needing some doctoring.
The idea is to go through the manuscript, see what’s good and what’s not, and develop a full novel – say 50.000 words worth of it.jim_burns_dan_dare_ii

There’s a catch: the young guy I’m collaborating with is… me. Continue reading

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Word-count as quality?


And I like big things
the size of them impresses me

I’ve been told that – when it comes to ebook pricing – selling anything shorter than 100 pages for 99 cents is, basically, shortchanging the readers.

I find the idea somewhat silly, especially when, to support it, I am told that generally speaking short fiction can’t be as good as long fiction.
Quite simply, I’ve been told, there’s not room enough, in a short story, to tell a good, satisfying tale.

Continue reading


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