Here’s what I’m working on. As you can see I’m working on far too many things, and need to learn to focus on those that have the best chance of being published.
July 2017: At present I’m trying to decide what to write next.
I’m beginning to plan the next book in my church history novels series, a volume that will precede the events in Doctor Luke’s Assistant. Tentatively titled Adam Of Jerusalem, this will involve as the protagonist Adam ben Zachariah, a Jewish scribe-in-training working for the high priest. He us the father of August, the protagonist in Doctor Luke’s Assistant and Preserve The Revelation. After playing a minor role in the events of the night Jesus was betrayed, he is assigned to “dig up dirt” on the growing Christian sect. As he does this, he is drawn to Jesus, but is treated wrongly by some who are supposedly Christians, but really aren’t. He turns against Christianity, as well as against his own Judaism as he sees how the rulers treat the Christians. The plot is well set in my mind, though details will develop as I write it.
I’m working on The Gutter Chronicles, the Continuing Saga of Norman D. Gutter, Engineer, Volume 2. I wrote volume 1 five years ago, planning to make it into a workplace humor series. Other things got in the way and I set it aside. I actually started working on Volume 2 in 2014, and got into the 4th chapter before Life and writing took me in other directions. So it sits there, almost 9,000 words on the way to 45,000 words, waiting for me to get back to it. As I look at the document on my computer, I see all 15 chapters named, though I can’t remember what I intended for each based on some of the names. I will most likely make this my next work, seeing how far I can get with it in July and August.
At some point I’ll write another book in my Documenting America. With the third in the series just out (July 2017), I’ve thought about this and, while I don’t see my way deep into the series at this time, I’m pretty sure the next one will be on the writing of the Constitution. The problems with the Articles of Federation, the constitutional convention, and the push for ratification will be the focus. I have some of the documents identified and in hand; others will be easily available. The last DA book was over 70,000 words, longer than I intended for books in this series. I’ll have to think about how long this one will be. I don’t have a time frame for this at present, but suspect I’ll be working on it sometime in 2018.
Additional short stories are running through my head, but the subjects haven’t quite gelled enough to work on them. With the series on teenage grief, the Danny Tompkins stories, completed (though I will probably join them into a boxed set before 2017 ends), my only current series is about Sharon Williams Fonseca, unconventional CIA agent. The fifth in that series is rolling around in my head, likely to find its way to the pixeled page later in 2017. Nothing else in that series has come to mind so far, but I haven’t been concentrating on it, either, with so much else going on.
Two other series of novels have come to mind, series which I have planned out, even writing some plot elements, but haven’t begun writing yet. One is to be called The Alfred Cottage Mysteries. It will be a series of cozy mysteries, but with a twist. A young man begins researching his, and his new wife’s, genealogy, and finds mysteries to be solved. I have this planned as about a ten book series, but that’s not definite. It could be longer or shorter depending on how it goes. The first one is tentatively titled: Alfred Cottage and the Coroner’s Inquest. The second series will be about a group of stock traders, working off Wall Street. It will draw from my stock trading experience, though will be equally about the people involved as about the stock trading. The series could be about ten books. The first one is tentatively titled Catch A Falling Knife. I have no plans on when I might start these two series. Years ago I thought it might be as early as this year, which obviously hasn’t happened. So I’m not going to set a time frame. Perhaps I will in the next update of this page.
Based on meetings with editors at the Write-To-Publish Conference in June 2011, I’m restructuring the book I had been calling Essential John Wesley into a series of shorter small group studies. This may be three, four, or five books of six lessons each. It seems that people nowadays don’t want long studies. That’s okay. I’ll be happy to publish four books instead of one.
Status: The series is planned. This just means breaking the larger book, which I had already planned, into logical smaller pieces. I had written one chapter and started a second, but will have to restructure this according to what the publisher is looking for. I should add that, although a publisher has shown interest, I have no guarantee that publisher will actually accept them. Update 20 June 2012: This project is on hold, as I have way too many things going on to work on it right now.
Update 16 Sept 2012: I’ve had this project on hold for some time, and don’t foresee starting it very soon.
Update 21 Oct 2013: A year has passed and I’ve done very little on this. So much to write, so little time. Oh, well, retirement is only 4 years, 2 months, and 10 days away.
Update July 2017: Nothing has changed with this. I continue, from time to time, with my Wesley studies, but have been too busy with other things to commit any brain power to brainstorming the series, or even planning the first volume of it. Expect nothing on this within two years, unless God moves me in that direction.
I have “written” and taught several Bible studies or small group studies to our adult Sunday school class at church, now called a Life Group. These are all in a different stage of completion. Some have just the outline and the notes I used to teach. Others have just a weekly handout for the class. Some have both a handout and teaching notes. In general these could be submitted for consideration by a publisher, but have much work to be done to make them submit-able—that is, really ready to be published. Here they are.
– Life on a Yo yo: Learning from Peter’s Ups and Downs (14 lessons)
– The Dynamic Duo: Lessons from the Lives of Elijah and Elisha (18 lessons)
– Sacred Moment: A Study of the Christian Sacrements (10 lessons)
– Isaiah (a 20 lesson overview of the whole book)
– What One Thing is Strongest? (5 lessons in the apocrypha book 1 Esdras)
– Entrusted To My Care: a study through 1st and 2nd Timothy, developed and taught in 2016-17
– Lesser Known People of the Bible (10 lessons)
– Good King, Bad King (outlining now complete; about 14 lessons)
– To Exile and Back: A Study of the Jewish Nation’s Exile to Babylon (16 lessons planned). I have actually worked on the outline of this, along with some research, in 2017. I’m not ready to start working on it yet, but I’m getting closer. I’m not sure it will be as many as 16 lessons.