New Work Accepted

I got word today that my second in the Mickey Rangel detective series, tentatively titled The Lemon Tree Caper. This is very cool news. I had a ton of fun writing this one, getting Mickey on the case for a second time. Now to get to work on the next.

Also, with Arte Publico Press/Pinata Books: another collection of stories accepted, likely to be called Devil's Dance: Stories from Beyond. The stories are more contemporary takes on Mexican American cucuy legends: la llorona, la mano pachona, the devil at the dance, and the like. Hopefully this one will also come in a bilingual edition. More meant for middle and high school readers than something like Xavier Garza's Creepy Creatures and his more recent Kid Cyclone books, which I'd say are more for older elementary and middle school readers. But it'll be cool to be in the same space as him.

I have gotten started on my next book or story, like I posted before. It's very stream of consciousness for now, but it most likely not stay that way. I was on the plane back and took the couple pages I'd hand-written the day before and added another six or seven hand-written pages. I'm excited about it. More later.

NCTE/ALAN 2010 Orlando

I shouldn't complain because ultimately the venue was easy to maneuver, if you can get over the idea of wanting to walk from where I'm staying (the Yacht Club) to where much of the action is taking place (the Coronado). I mean, the shuttle service was pretty good and always on time. Kudos to those drivers and organizers. But man, the weather was, for the most part, awesome and would that there would've been more forethought on keeping the show as green as could be. At times, I was one of two people on the buses traveling back and forth. TV stunk, for the most part, and it was kind of funny to walk into my room and see a Mickey head on one of the beds fashioned out of hand and face towels.

I'll tell you what: it was great seeing Chris Crowe again, Matt de la Pena, Dana Reinhardt, Janet Wong, Wendy Lamb, Adrienne Waintraub (as always, too cool for school!), Bill Broz (a very awesome co-presenter), Lyn Miller-Lachman, Steve Schneider, Lee Byrd, Benjamin Alire, and the list goes on and on and on. Cool meeting Amy (A.S.) King. Teri Lesesne. Kenan Metzger. James Blasingame. Walter, the Giant Heart. The folks at National Geographic School Publishing: Andy, Tamara, Ellen, and the crew. Marina Tristan at Arte Publico. More later as my memory refreshes.

Got lots of reading done, started on a new story (long or short? don't know--it hasn't defined itself yet in that regard). Had a novel pretty much rejected, but it serves as the impetus to get back to work on it, or on something else.

ALAN was great. I got to sit in on several of the sessions and a couple of the break-outs. Would love to be invited back. I think one of the highlights for me was being on a panel titled "It's a Guy Thing," moderated by Kenan Metzger. The other panelists included Martin Chatterton (a very hip British dude), Brent Crawford, Tom Angleberger, and Derrick Barnes. Tom was hilarious! Especially when he introduced the Shipless Pirates in his latest book. But Derrick was, to me, the highlight. He spook about a man's responsibility for his family and his community. And then on the plane back I got to read his latest novel, We Could Be Brothers, in which he writes about two boys, each from opposite ends of the social economic stratus, but they got each other's back, even through the toughest of situations. It's a must read.


Pluma Fronteriza Interview

Check out my new interview about A Good Long Way with Pluma Fronteriza's Raymundo Rojas:


And Kirkus, Booklist, Teri Lesesne, and ForeWord have all said very cool things about the novel. It's due out sometime soon. No specific date, but I understand it's at the printer's as I type this up. Technical issues kept it from coming out at the end of October.