It’s Launch Day!

By John Gilstrap

This is my 21st Book Birthday, and it is always exciting.  Hellfire is Jonathan Grave’s twelfth adventure. If you click the picture, you’ll go to a plot summary and (shockingly, right?) links to buy the book. They make wonderful gifts, remember. And Christmas is less than six months away. Just sayin’.

I frequently tell audiences–and I may have posted here in the past–that I consider myself blessed that I am one of precious few people I know who has been fortunate enough to live out pretty much every item on my bucket list. If you’d asked me when I was 12 what I wanted to do for a living, I’d have told you that I wanted to write novels.

And because it’s Launch Day, I need to beg the forgiveness of the TKZ family. Due to a shipping glitch, a couple hundred books that I was supposed to sign a week ago arrived at my doorstep today. My blog writing time has been taken from me in the best possible way. This, folks, is living the dream. Seriously.

BUT . . . So your time on this site today won’t be entirely wasted, I have a MS Word trick that I discovered a couple of years ago, but which many people don’t yet know about. Have you ever been frustrated when apostrophes face the wrong direction when you’re typing? It happens at the beginning of contracted words like ’cause instead of because. It also happens when you close a quote after an em dash.  Well, there’s a solution and it lies in the Ctrl key. If you type <Ctrl> ‘ and then ‘ your single quote will become an apostrophe at the beginning of your word. After the em dash, <Ctrl> ” then ” will change than annoying opening quotation mark to a closed quote.

Next, time, I’ll be more worth reading, I promise.

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About John Gilstrap

John Gilstrap is the New York Times bestselling author of Total Mayhem, Scorpion Strike, Final Target, Friendly Fire, Nick of Time, Against All Enemies, End Game, Soft Targets, High Treason, Damage Control, Threat Warning, Hostage Zero, No Mercy, Nathan’s Run, At All Costs, Even Steven, Scott Free and Six Minutes to Freedom. Four of his books have been purchased or optioned for the Big Screen. In addition, John has written four screenplays for Hollywood, adapting the works of Nelson DeMille, Norman McLean and Thomas Harris. A frequent speaker at literary events, John also teaches seminars on suspense writing techniques at a wide variety of venues, from local libraries to The Smithsonian Institution. Outside of his writing life, John is a renowned safety expert with extensive knowledge of explosives, weapons systems, hazardous materials, and fire behavior. John lives in Fairfax, VA.

12 thoughts on “It’s Launch Day!

  1. Launches never get old. Lunches do, unless they’re paid for.

    Congrats, John. It’s been quite a ride since you took that long drive and thought up Nathan’s Run, hasn’t it?

  2. Congrats on the new release, John.

    My process for dealing with the apostrophe/single quote issue is to copy an apostrophe and paste it over the quote mark. Low techie here. I do a search on space single quote to find them.

  3. Congrats, John.

    And thanks for your tip re getting the apostrophe’s right. I checked whether it also works on LibreOffice Writer, but unfortunately it doesn’t seem to–neither on Win nor on Mac. I’ll have to bug them about adding it as a feature. Or I may get frustrated and figure out a macro.

  4. Congratulations on the new release, John. I happened to be looking at the mystery/thriller category on Apple Books early this morning, doing a little market research, and saw your new release at #5 😀

    Thanks for the word tip, that’s very handy.

  5. John, congratulations on your book launch. It’s the only thing, besides murder and mayhem, I’m sure, that would get you off the TKZ hook.

    Besides, your apostrophe fix is just the cat’s meow! That has aggravated me for years. (So does a cat’s meow, BTW)

    In the words of Gomer Pyle, “Thank ye, thank ye, thank ye!”

  6. Good luck with HELLFIRE, John! And thanks so much for that apostrophe fix/trick. It has driven me crazy for years.

  7. Congratulation s John! Never boring to hear about a new book launch. 🙂 And thank you, thank you for that Word tip! I’ve found get arounds but they are not as easy as your tips. 😀

  8. Wow, John, you really know how to begin a book. I read this first snippet, and I was hooked! I guess I’m just going to have to read the whole book. 😉 Best of luck for a successful launch.

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