Get ready for a rowdy ride

Just before we left for vacation to the Florida Keys — more on that later — I finished editing Steven Becker’s newest release in his Kurt Hunter series, Backwater Flats. It was, I think, the most fun I ever had editing anything — and I’ve edited a lot of stuff. Here’s what Steve wrote about the new book on his blog:

Florida Keys
On the way to the Marine Sanctuary near Key Largo. The water a Monet of blue.

I’ve finished the third pass of the manuscript and sent it to Cathy, my editor. Usually, by this time, I’m sick of the story and think it’s the worst thing ever written. This one continued to entertain me and I think you’ll like it as well.

Part of the reason is my process. Some writers outline their books before they write them (plotters), others wing it (pantsers). I lean toward being a pantser. I’ve tried outlining with different programs and methods, but it all falls apart as soon as I start writing the stories. I like to give my characters space, and often have no idea where they’re going, though sometimes I point them in a direction. It can be painful knowing the story could fall apart at any moment, but it’s also the fun part for me. In this case it was a little scary. I didn’t know who the killer was until Kurt figured it out two chapters before the end.

You can read the entire post here and find links to pre-order — it’s only $2.99 on Amazon.

Here’s how I described the book on my social: Finding dead bodies is nothing new to Park Service Special Agent Kurt Hunter–but having one show up in the park headquarter’s parking lot puts a different spin on his investigation. The suspects range from his neighbor to a co-worker to a fish and wildlife officer, and Kurt needs all the expertise his CSI wife, Justine, can give to match a most unlikely murder weapon to the killer. Hop on Kurt’s center console for a wild ride though the backwaters of Biscayne Bay’s mangroves to the maze of Miami’s river canals as this California transplant solves a most, ah, crusty crime.

Coming up soon in the Keys is the short lobster season — and these spiny crustaceans hold the key (pun intended) to solving the crime. I learned a lot about the Key-life aquatic (apologies to Steve Zissou) last week, and I can’t wait to bring an even keener editing eye to future projects.

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