Best-selling author Catherine Coulter brought her energetic, anything-goes style to the Sacramento Bee Book Club Thursday night, energizing and informing a fan base of more than 100 at Tthe Bee.
“She’s a fireball!” one fan was overheard saying to another.
Another fan had flown in from Texas for the opportunity to chat and have her picture taken with Coulter, who schmoozed with guests at the autograph table after her presentation
Coulter has written 80 novels in multiple series and as stand-alones, in at least four genres – historical romance, contemporary romance, contemporary romantic thriller and contemporary suspense thriller.
“Do you know how many words that is?” she asked the crowd. “Oodles and oodles!”
“The Devil’s Triangle” is the latest in her “A Brit in the FBI” series in collaboration with another New York Times bestselling author, J.T. Ellison (Gallery Books, $28, 512 pages). Independently, Coulter writes the 20-title “FBI Thriller” series.
Coulter touched on a number of subjects during her name-dropping, laughter-filled, 40-minute talk to the crowd, including tips to novice writers, her relationship with her publishing house, what drove her from romance to suspense thriller, her favorite characters in her books and her working relationship with Ellison (“We talk on the phone and by email several times a day”).
On the subject of profanity in popular fiction: “There is absolutely zippo cursing in (my books). You don’t need it. Sometimes I’m tempted to include (an expletive) because it’s the perfect word (for a character to say), but then I say, ‘Nope, not gonna do it.’ It’s not appropriate, in my opinion, and if you don’t agree with me, you’re wrong.”
On the start of her career: “I hate to take you back to the Ark, but I was there when Johann Gutenberg got the printing press going. My husband was in medical school at Columbia University, and I was a speechwriter on Wall Street. We’d see each other 30 minutes a night; I would cook spaghetti.
“I was reading 15 books a week, and one night I threw one against the wall and said, ‘I can do better.’ My husband was totally supportive, so he took the next weekend off and together we plotted the first book.”
On writing: “If you’re writing and you have somebody doubting you, kick them to the curb. You need to do whatever it takes and make sacrifices to get the job done.”
During the audience question-answer session, she was asked, “Don’t you ever slow down?” Coulter merely laughed at the notion.
The next Bee Book Club event will be Wednesday, April 26, with journalist John A. Farrell for his biography “Richard Nixon: The Life” (Doubleday, $35, 752 pages). Tickets at www.sacbee.com/events.