Ten Interview Questions for the Next Big Thing:
If writing a novel is like running a marathon, then writing a biography must be like a cross-country death race. I’ve just spent the last 4 years working on the biography of Erle Stanley Gardner, the very prolific author of the Perry Mason series. My trek has been even more daunting, given that Gardner could write an entire novel in 4 days. What would he think of me taking 4 years?
It did help that he was a man of perseverance. He wrote every day trying to meet a goal of 10,000 words a day. That’s about 40 pages to you and me. Before he learned to use a dictation machine, Gardner would type until his fingers bled. He took to wearing sticking plaster on the pads of his fingers to avoid getting blood on the keys. He wrote in the desert and in a hurricane while on a small boat. His dedication helped get me through 2 surgeries, thinking that if he could continue to write in those conditions, so could I.
The book is nearly complete. I’m working on the final edits for the book as we speak, and the entire thing should be bundled up to my agent by Christmas.
Linda Hengerer's blog is at http://
What is your working title of your book (or story)? For the Defense
Where did the idea come from for the book? My Dad always used to bring home Perry Mason novels, and I always loved reading them.
What genre does your book fall under? Biography
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book? The definitive biography of Erle Stanley Gardner
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency? Agency
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript? 3 years!
What else about your book might pique the reader's interest? Gardner was married for over 30 years to a woman he didn't live with.