Arranging publicity. Updating the website. Cutting Brad's hair (see evidence below). Browbeating reviewers. Enticing readers into preordering.
From behind the closed door of Brad's office, there came a constant stream of, uh, encouragement.
Okay, butt in the saddle everyone, it's time to get to work!
Out in the cubicle area, Maggie, the clueless intern, had her head bent over a layout featuring the book cover alongside a glowing list of pull quotes. Zach, the silly intern, was seated next to her, dutifully putting together a mailing for book influencers.
Let's go, people! I want to see you sweat!
Sarah, the smart intern, was attempting to concentrate on proofreading some barely literate missive of Brad's, but—with increasing annoyance—she kept glancing at the closed door.
I can tell you're slacking already. No slacking! You have to push harder!
"Okay, that's it, Brad!" Sarah snapped, rising and stomping toward Brad's office. "No one here is 'slacking' and it's not fair of you to—"
She threw the door open and stopped.
Peter, the slothful intern, was sitting on a Peloton, his legs furiously churning the bike's pedals.
"What are you doing?" Sarah asked.
"What does it look like?" Peter said between gasps of air. "I packed on fifteen pounds during the pandemic!"
Peter aside, the rest of the interns really have been putting maximum effort into promoting Unthinkable, which may be Brad's most compelling thriller yet.
It features Nate Lovejoy, who, like Brad at one point, is a stay-at-home dad (except Nate is taller and better looking). Nate is approached by a shadowy secret society and given an impossible choice: Either he allows a chain of events that will lead to the death of a billion people . . . or he must do the unthinkable.
The pre-publication magazines have already taken notice. Kirkus gave it a starred review, calling it, "a textbook one-sitting read whose fiendishly inventive details only intensify its remorseless momentum."
Publishers Weekly wrote: "Parks makes suspension of disbelief to his premise accessible via solid prose and characterizations. Readers who enjoy jaw-dropping but credible plot twists will be enthralled."
As for Brad, he might have gotten a little too ardent and taken Unthinkable to bed with him when finished copies recently arrived from the publisher.
But at least the interns made him chop off his unruly pandemic hair . . .
. . . just in time for a three-stop virtual book tour.
The first will be Mystery and Thriller Mavens Presents Brad Parks on publication day, Tuesday, July 27, at 4 p.m. ET. Brad will be interviewed by Sara DiVello on the YouTube/Facebook channels hosted by Houston's world-famous mystery bookseller, Murder by the Book.
Later that same day, at 8 p.m. ET, Brad will appear live on his own Facebook page to talk more about the book and perhaps even sing the song he listened to for inspiration throughout the writing. (Trigger warning: This may involve sappy country music.)
It's looking like Peter will be in top shape by the time all of this happens. As for the rest of you, the interns sincerely hope that in a month's time, the only thing you'll need to set your heart racing will be Unthinkable.
Yours from the saddle,
The BradParksBooks.com Interns