Those of you who follow me on Facebook or LinkedIn already know, but for those of you who don’t, I was fortunate to be recruited to be a Story Writer for Acorn TV, and I’ve been having a blast. It is quite a departure for me and my normal writing.
A little background …
The last short story I wrote, Dusty and Me, was published in about 1987. I wrote it after watching the movie Stand By Me, which was based on a Stephen King novella, The Body, that appeared in his collection, Different Seasons. The novella had long been one of my favorite works, and the movie, directed by Rob Reiner that starred Will Weaton and River Phoenix, moved me like no other. The first draft was written in about two hours. I polished and edited it and sent it off, and St. Anthony Messenger published it! It was the first piece of writing for which I received a nice sum of money. Nothing to retire on, but hey, it was nice to receive.
That was 1987. Today, it is 2022. Doing the math, that’s 35 years! I had not written a short story since until I was asked to do that for Acorn. I’ve submitted three so far and there will be more to come.
The first short I wrote for Acorn was a fantasy. Talk about a stretch! The closest thing to fantasy I’ve read was the Harry Potter series, and I don’t think that is true fantasy. The second thing I wrote was a romance. Guys, I write thriller-crime-fiction. I write about guns and fights and a few car chases, threats and mayhem, dying, dead and maimed bodies. Romance? Talk about a stretch. But I have to admit, that one was fun. Sad, but fun.
Typically in my books, I have many characters. I go into depth because I want my characters to live and breathe in the reader’s mind. I want readers to see and feel the setting and atmosphere. In a short story, much of it is condensed. There is still character development, though the number of characters is fewer. There is still setting and atmosphere, but word choice and brevity is key because the story is short, not long. The build up to the climax is a steep climb, rather than taking the reader down a path or three to get to the climax. And knowing that many of you have read my work, you understand I believe the ending of a story (paraphrasing Stephen King) should evolve into the next story. So in my short stories, the ending is there, the resolve is there, but the reader has a sense there is more to come. Again, as it should. I want the reader wanting more.
So far, Acorn hasn’t kicked me to the corner or laughed at my work. I am able to provide them with my books, which they are happy to receive. Obviously, there are no guarantees. They, along with my short stories, might be developed into something of a TV series or movie, but I can’t control that. I do my submission as I’m asked, and if something comes of it/them, great, good, and awesome. And if not, bummer.
That’s my new gig: Story Writer for Acorn TV.
Now for some great news:
My book, Betrayed, recently won two Top Shelf Awards: 1st Place Fiction-Mystery; and Runner-Up Fiction-Crime. That brings the number of awards for Betrayed to a whopping 7! I will leave the book description and link below for those of you who might be interested:
Integrity is protecting someone who betrayed you. Courage is keeping a promise, even though it might mean death.
A late-night phone call, a missing kid, a murdered family, and no one is talking. What was to be a fun hunting trip into a deadly showdown. Fifteen-year-old brothers George Tokay, Brian Evans and Brett McGovern face death on top of a mesa on the Navajo Nation Reservation in Arizona. They do not know why men are intent on killing them. https://t.co/9N5EDH93oX
I was recently interviewed by Feed My Reads, and if you are interested in getting to know me and in what I have to say, the link can be found at: https://timetofeedmyreads.blogspot.com/2022/08/joseph-lewis-interview.html
Last, my newest book, Fan Mail, will drop March 30, 2023, but it will be available for preorder before that date, and I will have author’s copies for sale and signing before that date as well. The Kindle and Nook version of the book will be out at some point after March 30.
Fan Mail differs from my other work. While it is still in the thriller-mystery-crime genre, and while it uses some of the same characters you’ve grown to enjoy, it is a coming-of-age piece embedded in a tight thriller. Here are some promo pieces I’ve come up with:
Fan Mail Short Blurb:
A car bomb, threatening letters, and a heart attack cause the once tight-knit and supportive family of adoptive brothers to turn on each other. Can Detectives Graff, O’Connor and Eiselmann solve who is behind it before the family is torn apart? Before anyone is seriously injured? Before one or more of the boys die?
Fan Mail Long Blurb:
A barrage of threatening letters, a car bomb, and a heart attack rip apart what was once a close-knit family of adopted brothers. Randy and Bobby, along with fellow band member and best friend, Danny, receive fan mail that turns menacing. They ignore it, but to their detriment. The sender turns up the heat. Violence upends their world. It rocks the relationship between the boys and ripples through their family, nearly killing their dad. As these boys turn on each other, adopted brother Brian flashes back to that event in Arizona where he nearly lost his life saving his brothers. The scars on his face and arms healed, but not his heart. Would he once again have to put himself in harm’s way to save them? And if faced with that choice, will he?
Fan Mail One Sentence Pitch:
Fan Mail is a multi-layered coming-of-age story about a family of adopted brothers, embedded in a gripping thriller that will keep the reader guessing who is behind the letters and the car bomb, and fearing one or more of the boys may die before the culprit is found.
Theresa Storke, one of my beta readers, a phenomenal English and Reading teacher, a great friend, and an even better person, helped me craft them. I owe her a debt of gratitude.
I hope you are looking forward to getting your copy. I’m eager to get it into your hands and to hear from you what you think.
Thank you for following along on my writing journey. I hope you are finding this website beneficial. If you have suggestions or questions, please let me know in the comment section. I’d love to hear from you. And as always, if you’ve read my work, I ask that you please review and/or rate it on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. They truly help. Obviously, 4s and 5s are the best, but once you read it, the book becomes yours based upon your experience and what the book does to your heart. Thanks in advance.
My Social Media Contact:
Author Website at https://www.jrlewisauthor.blog
Twitter at https://www.twitter.com/jrlewisauthor
Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/Joseph.Lewis.Author