I’m delighted to welcome Isabella Maldonado to the blog today, to help her celebrate the debut of a new Nina Guerrera series! The Cipher, a police procedural/thriller, came out last week. Welcome to the blog Isabella. You’re talking about something we can all relate to!
By nature, I’m a neat and organized person, but I’ve noticed an interesting trend. Over the course of writing a novel, increasing levels of entropy creep into my workspace toward the end of each draft.
In a bizarre parallel with the frenetic pace of my characters hurtling toward the climax of the story, my life becomes increasingly chaotic when the end of a manuscript is in sight. I step back from social media, socializing in general, and sometimes household chores like tidying my desk.
Because I’m the designated vice-president-in-charge-of-household-papers, the pile of documents to sort, coupons to cut, receipts to file, and general detritus spreads until I consider putting on an outbreak suit to wade through it.
This stage of the process drives me a bit batty because, as I mentioned, I’m kind of a neat freak. But I’m in the flow, so there’s no stopping or slowing down to take care of routine paperwork. I vow to get to it later. The compilation of settings, plot pieces, and characters in my mind competes with the growing collection of incoming information screaming for my attention. All but the most urgent papers are pushed to the back burner as I sprint headlong toward the finish line.
At the end of the day, my husband ventures into my office with a fresh stack of mail. Scanning the desk, he raises a brow. I narrow my eyes. He wisely says nothing and puts the newest pile on a chair in the corner before slowly backing out.
True to my word, when each draft is finished, I clean and purge my workspace. The office is returned to its usual state of orderliness. Peace is restored. Like a bear in the springtime, I crawl out from the cave ready to engage the world again. Thankfully, this only seems to happen in the last month of the process.
Attached are a couple of pictures of my office as it is now. I’m embarking on a new novel, so I’ll document the before status of my surroundings. Later, I might get pics of the after status! Or not…
Do you function better in a neat and tidy, or a messy and free flowing workspace?
Isabella will send one commenter a copy of The Cipher.
Retired police captain ISABELLA MALDONADO wore a gun and badge in real life before turning to crime writing. A former Commander of Special Investigations and Forensics, she was selected to attend the FBI National Academy in Quantico. She uses her law enforcement background to bring realism to her writing. www.isabellamaldonado.com
About the Book:
To a cunning serial killer, she was the one that got away. Until now…
FBI Special Agent Nina Guerrera escaped a serial killer’s trap at sixteen. Years later, when she’s jumped in a Virginia park, a video of the attack goes viral. Legions of new fans are not the only ones impressed with her fighting skills. The man who abducted her eleven years ago is watching. Determined to reclaim his lost prize, he commits a grisly murder designed to pull her into the investigation…but his games are just beginning. And he’s using the internet to invite the public to play along.
His coded riddles may have made him a depraved social media superstar—an enigmatic cyber-ghost dubbed “the Cipher”—but to Nina he’s a monster who preys on the vulnerable. Partnered with the FBI’s preeminent mind hunter, Dr. Jeffrey Wade, who is haunted by his own past, Nina tracks the predator across the country. Clue by clue, victim by victim, Nina races to stop a deadly killer while the world watches.
Links to website and to purchase:
Isabella’s website includes links to purchase in several formats and venues.