So you can read my books

Sunday, May 12, 2013


{Image of Alice's mother courtesy of the genius of Leonora Roy}


The shadows of your novel are murmuring in strange song. 

The nights beckon with seductive smells and sights that only its unique setting can conjure.

You must pick your setting carefully. 

You must paint it bewitchingly.  Your tale will be heightened by the impact of your novel's locale.

Denise Covey -

asked me to explain on her blog why I chose New Orleans as the setting for so many of my novels. 

Where else could you have seen a sight such as this?

{Photo in the public domain}
Go to Denise's amazing blog on Monday and see how I further answered her intriguing question:
Come back and tell me how I did.  :-)
And while you're blog surfing,
go to the great Jack de Golia's web site
and hear the first few sentences of
Hibbs is waiting.
You don't want to irritate a mystic Grizzly do you?


  1. When I saw your blog post heading, I had a sinking feeling it was going to be about the shooting at the Mother's Day Parade - in New Orleans.

    Can you believe it? Another shooting ...

  2. Where love is ... darkness feel a compulsion to twist beauty into ugliness. I try not to expound on the evil that seems to prey on the innocent daily. It seems grotesque to do so. I prefer to focus on what beauty and humor still exists in this world.

    Mankind eats its own. :-(

  3. New Orleans bustles with personality and the supernatural - plus you live there. Why not set your tales there?
    Will visit Denise tomorrow!

  4. Alex:
    New Orleans is, indeed, a mysterious, lovely, supernatural lady. And I only live here part-time. :-) I hope you enjoy your visit to Denise tomorrow!

  5. I've been at work all day and didn't hear about the shooting. OMG!

    The world needs to eat more chocolate.

    Hugs and chocolate,

    Tweeted and shared!

  6. Shelly:
    A 10 year old girl was shot. The world is filled with soul-less people whose appetite is only for blood. Sad.

  7. Wonderful audio, Roland! While it's true, I rarely read books more than once, I often read and then listen to the audio—two totally unique experiences.
    I look forward to listening to THE BEAR WITH TWO SHADOWS in its entirety.

    I understand why you write about New Orleans, so I won't ask, although I will read Denise's post. :) My heart cracks wide at the Mothers' Day second line shooting in the 7th. This senseless violence is why, at this very moment as I pack everything I own prepared to leave Atlanta forever, I will NOT be moving to New Orleans, but North. Two years ago, I wrote a story about New Orleans. Finest short I've ever written, and for the life of me I can't get anyone to publish it. Perhaps this excerpt explains why:

    I locked the front door. "Six years later and tourists still want to hear about Katrina."

    "That's not a bad thing. Next time a hurricane hits—and there will be a next time, there always is—maybe the city can get help before it turns on itself." He made the sign of the cross and added, "God willing."

    "This city has a long, proud history of turning on itself, but I wouldn't live anywhere else."

  8. VR:
    I wrote THE BEAR WITH TWO SHADOWS to be read aloud by parents to children, and then by the adults those children had grown into to hear it aloud again and see depths I had written into it for adult minds.

    Yes, listening to a book you have read is a different experience -- it gives you a feeling of why radio dramas and comedies were so popular in the 20's. You are in the midst of the story in a way you are not when just reading to yourself.

    There is a section in the audio version of WHITE NIGHT where Harry is looking inside a shattered woman's soul. Her entire psyche is mired in the one moment when her daughter dies in her arms, a victim of a stray shot in a shooting. It is chilling.

    Especially so what with the shootings in New Orleans today where a ten year old girl was gunned down along with 18 others.

    New Orleans did indeed turn on itself when the lights went out in Katrina and stayed out -- along with the government taking five days to get something as simple as bottled water to the city.

    I understand why you are not moving to New Orleans -- the traffic is terrible - the people have changed from what they once were before Katrina - and the city seems haunted even more than it once was.

    If I had the money, I would probably move to Austin, Texas -- or to Christchurch, New Zealand -- that is before this terrible drought has hit them!

    There are precious few places to live without predators and perils these days.

    I liked your excerpt. Sometimes I think it is who you know in publishing not the quality of your prose that matters. Sigh.

  9. wow, didn't know about the sad news:(

    i will go visit Denise tomorrow and read your post. i will also listen to Hibbs then, too. right now i have a lesson plan to throw together :)

    have a safe night Roland!

  10. I am enjoying the Bear with Two Shadows very much!

    Tragedy can destroy or invigorate a population. We can only pray that people are drawn to God, saved and healed.

  11. Denise:
    There is so much heartbreak daily that one tragedy seems to drown in the headlines.

    I hope you enjoy my guest post at Denise's. Hibbs will be waiting for you. :-) Good teaching tomorrow!

    I am so happy that you are enjoying THE BEAR WITH TWO SHADOWS. Follow Jack's link to hear the first few sentences from the audio book of it that is soon to be released.

    Sometimes when we are hurled to our backs we look up -- other times we just look within to our despair. Choices.

    Thanks for visiting, Roland

  12. Hi Roland .. I've been over to Denise - and yes I can believe your settings will be so real. I love the idea of visiting New Orleans - one day ...

    Like you I prefer to remember positive elements from life, though dark deeds haunt us ..

    The audio snippet I thoroughly enjoyed and now the Kindle is up and running I'll enjoy your books .. cheers Hilary

  13. Hilary:
    Some of the details to New Orleans of 1834 are sad since humanity has never been kind. Yet, I focus on the light in all of us that strives to flicker in the darkness.

    I'm glad you enjoyed the first few sentences from Hibbs' adventure. :-)

  14. I listened to the audio snippet and Jack's a great reader for your book, especially for children,with a calm even manner of speaking. His pacing seem just right. Good luck with Hibbs!

    More shooting. . .The innocent fall by the wayside while trusting in human kindness that isn't there. Sad and scary.

  15. Hi again, Roland, visited Denise's blog and read your response to 'Why New Orleans' as setting. Excellent responses. (N'Orleans has so much intrigue, history and background, not all of it lustrous.)

    I have always been intrigued by its French mystique and the Creole music.

  16. so much life/tragedy/mystery... you bring so much out in your writings it's like we get to live it. i think that makes some sense?

  17. I almost went to New Orleans once. I actually made it across from the mainland, but had to turn around b/c the President was in town.
    You're right...setting is so important. It can be an extra "character" in the book.

  18. New Orleans has so much colour and history. I can see why you use it!

    Allison (Geek Banter)

  19. D.G.:
    Jack put so much work and skill into the narration of BEAR that I hope it succeeds for his sake!

    We eat our own as the New Orleans shooting again proves. So sad.

    I love much of New Orleans as do you: its rich food, its jazz, its spirit.

    It makes perfect sense. That "living it" is what I strive for in my prose. Thanks for sensing it!

    Like Sherlock Holmes' London, New Orleans becomes another character in my novels. As you said. :-) I hate that the President robbed you of your chance of visiting the Big Easy. :-(

    New Orleans is a mysterious lady that teases and threatens at the same time! :-)

  20. It has been wonderful to learn more history from your backyard Roland...but more shootings...tragic!

  21. New Orleans is a great setting for ghost/ghoul/undead stories and I think it is awesome you have learned so much about its history and integrated that rich culture into your novels. Keep up the good story telling.