I love rumors.
Really, I do. My favorite part of baseball season--after the playoffs--is hot stove rumors. I love hearing who the Yankees might acquire and how the Red Sox might counteract that. I'm a huge college basketball fan, and I follow recruiting pretty closely. There are a lot of rumors that travel through that world too. Who might commit, what team is cheating (no, not Rutgers), what player is leaning a certain way?
I love movie rumors too. I check out sites like Ain't It Cool and Dark Horizons, looking for new movie trailers and photos taken by spies with silly fake names. But these rumors get me excited. I want to see the movie. I want to watch my teams play. I dig to find out more.
I think authors need to do the same things. Rumors need to be let out for the fans to see, especially if you're established. Think of the uproar and excitement that was let out when we all heard Dennis Lehane might be writing a new Kenzie/Gennaro novel. Or the rumor that never panned out: he was writing something called MISSING DELORES. That book never panned out, but it got my imagination going.
Writers now have so many tools at their finger tips. There is Twitter, Facebook, and who knows what other things to get your message across. And too often all we get are word counts or something really mundane like "writing about killing today." Or even my awful status update that I "need to write today."
If you're going to talk about your writing, shouldn't you make it pique someone's interest? How much cooler would it be if Russel McLean tweeted that he'd was "writing today about melting the dome in the Capitol Building." Let me tell you something, I'd probably spend the rest of the afternoon combing the internet for more information. He'd probably also get an harassing email from me too. Or if Jason Pinter tweeted he was writing a scene about the beheading of a Canadian figure skater? That'd get me looking around the 'net too.
Boy would they have my interest. Let something go. Make it cool, and vague, and mysterious.
I understand things get cut in revision. Things change. Books don't pan out. But Missing Delores never happened, and I still wanted to know more about Shutter Island. Fans understand.
But it can only help to get the reader's attention long before the book comes out.
More Sinned Against and find out if two thugs can make it out of an Atlantic City hotel room alive. Or will their blood be splattered all over a couch?