I had an odd reaction to my recent free give-away of one of my novels. One woman was irate because the book was, and I quote, “SHORT, SHORT, SHORT!” in capital letters. “Tropical Knights” is 264 pages long.

I just finished a hard cover book entitled “Tatiana” by Martin Cruz Smith who is, in my opinion, the finest contemporary writer of our time. He is a master wordsmith and I have read everything he has written, and I must admit, I have been influenced by his fine workmanship. That book is 256 pages long. (8 pages shorter than TK.) I didn’t find Smith’s book “SHORT, SHORT, SHORT!” I found that he does what he always does, he tells the story and then quits. It is, incidentally, a fine book and I highly recommend it and any book by Smith.

As any professional author will tell you, and it seems too obvious to point it out, a story takes as long as it takes, and no longer. I wonder if that woman wanted me to add pages and pages of irrelevant material just to make a “longer” book? If she just wants more of the same TYPE of story, there is a sequel to “Tropical Knights” entitled “Tropical Daze” and another one on the way. I don’t guess I could convince her that some of the finest writing and best story-telling of all time – is in SHORT stories.

About johnbeckmanbooks

John Beckman, a retired meteorologist, was known as “Johnny the Weatherman” in a career that spanned forty years. He forecasted the weather on WSJS-TV in Winston-Salem, NC, at WFGA-TV in Jacksonville, FL, and for thirty-three years in Atlanta at WSB-TV and WXIA-TV. Also a well published author Beckman now devotes full time to writing fiction. He currently has several eBooks on, "Tropical Knights," first in a series of adventure/mysteries about a sailor and his lovely CIA cohort on a mission to save America. Now available the sequel, and second in the series: "Tropical Daze." The third Jack & Amy adventure is "Tropical Rage" which became available on 30 April 2014. All of his books are highlighted on and available from . .
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