In writing news, I'm readying a draft of Reckoning to send to my editor in March. As part of that, I'm incorporating some input I received from my Mystery Writers of America mentor, Peter James Quirk. One of Mr. Quirk's suggestions was to liven up the first few paragraphs--I thought it was already pretty lively, considering that it involves a young man driving toward a massive forest fire to save "The Lady," but I do see that there are opportunities to heighten the drama.
Coincidentally, at the same time I was working on that, I was reading Some Luck by one of my favorite authors, Jane Smiley. Check out my review on Goodreads--the upshot is that although I couldn't put the book down, very little happens plot-wise. In the first half of the book, the most exciting event is that a farmer almost falls into a well. How does Ms. Smiley manage to hold a reader's (at least this reader's) attention with so little drama? (I'm now starting on her book 13 Way of Looking at the Novel to learn her secret--and to see if any of her methods can be applied to a suspense novel.)
What's a book that contained little drama but still held your interest, and how do you think it did that? Please post your thoughts here or on my author Facebook page!