Thursday, August 16, 2012

The Evelyn Project: On Tour with Kfir Luzzatto

Kfir Luzzatto
This is a very personal list and may not work for everybody. Still, readers may benefit from at least some of the hints.

1. Figure out why you want to write it. If it’s just that everybody else is doing it and you have some free time on your hands, get a dog instead.

2. Think up a central subject and work on a rough plot. Nothing too elaborate, just something to start working with.

3. Get acquainted with your main characters; don't you even think of writing a line before you do. Spend time placing them in the environment that fits your plot (if it’s a historic novel, for instance, dress them up accordingly) and just play with them in your head. See what they look like, how they move, talk, behave, and let them develop until you are satisfied with them.

4. Take some notes. From this point on, details pile up and you may forget an important one. Quick bullet-point notes will help you later on.

5. Research. Now that you have an idea of the set-up and of the main characters involved you want to learn as much as possible about them. If the location where the action takes place is real and specific, read about it, study maps, look for pictures of it. In other words, get immersed in it. If your plot involves real historic characters, read everything you can get your hands on about them, until you feel that you know them intimately.

6. Take a break. Read a book by one of your favorite authors. Make sure to pick one that has no relevance to your specific plot.

7. Re-read Strunk, White & Kalman’s The Elements of Style, cover to cover. It doesn't matter that you have already read it 15 times before. Read it again.

8. Find a quiet room in the house to work in with the door closed. Never mind that there is nobody else around. Close the door to the outside world.

9. Write whenever you feel like it. You must have read the usual advice about having regular writing hours and sitting down every day at the same time to write a given number of words. That works very well if you have to write an instruction manual for a washing machine. For a novel you must follow your obsession and write whenever you feel like it. It is not uncommon for me to jump out of bed at 2 am to jot down a few paragraphs that have occurred to me in the shower. Write 15 minutes before going to work or 5 straight hours when you’re home from your day job. Whatever. Write on the train, at the airport, at the beach. Forget writing schedules. If you’re not obsessed, write for the washing machine company.

10. Close the door and write Chapter 1. Don't plan it (if you followed the above advice you have done all the planning you need), just let it happen. Reading that chapter will tell you if there is any point in writing on.

The Book

A loving father's cry for help gets into the wrong hands, and a hundred years later things get out of control. Evelyn's father did everything in his power to save his dying daughter, black magic included. But when a century later his plea for help gets into the wrong hands, all hell breaks loose. Caught in the slippery battlefield between the Vatican and a cult that wants to change the past, a young Italian professor and a beautiful French actress are too busy running away from murder and conspiracy to let physical attraction develop into love.And it further complicates things when Her Majesty's Secret Service decides to take an interest in what everyone else is doing to pull some strings of its own.Love that lasts through the veils of time, a mystery, and a race to end a conspiracy, "The Evelyn Project" is a story that will stir both your heart and your intellect.

The love for a child will bring and the best and worst in people . . . I enjoyed all of the different elements of this book and the international feel to it. Humor, suspense, and thrills meld together to keep the reader going and wanting more. You need to keep a sharp mind to focus on all of the twists, turns, and characters--there's a lot going on, but the author combines everything in a way so the story doesn't feel cluttered--everyone plays a worthwhile role. I enjoy the author's writing style and voice and I can honestly say it's one of the more unique styles I've read lately.

The relationship between Franco and Eva is well-crafted and fascinating to see it develop. Sometimes you really don't know where Eva stands and Franco rarely knows who he can trust. I would say that the relationship-building of this story is the book's greatest strength.

From London to Italy to Switzerland--from 2009 to 1894 and back again. I usually have a difficult time with big time jumps in the same book, but surprisingly I didn't find it distracting because the author does a wonderful job weaving everything together.

This is a great mystery with a little paranormal thrown into the mix. It's not a typical story, which is a bonus, and I would recommend it to anyone looking for a good thriller.

The Author

Kfir Luzzatto was born and raised in Italy, and moved to Israel as a teenager. He acquired the love for the English language from his father, a former U.S. soldier, a voracious reader and a prolific writer. Kfir has a PhD in chemical engineering and works as a patent attorney.

He lives in Omer, Israel, with his full-time partner, Esther, their four children, Michal, Lilach, Tamar and Yonatan, and the dog Elvis. He has won numerous awards for his writing.

Twitter: @KfirLuzzatto

Find the Book!


  1. It's always good to be reminded of what we need to to progress our writing. Tips and post to the point.

    Book sounds intriguing.

  2. Tip #1 is definitely my favorite. :) Nicely done on the book Kfir--it's great having you with us.

  3. Thanks for the great review, MK!

    It's so gratifying to read an unbiased opinion and to realize that you managed to get your message across just as you wanted it to sound...but of course you know that!