David Cady’s first published novel, the suspense thriller “The Handler,” earned him an author of the year nomination from the Georgia Writers Association back in 2009. But the retired Dalton High School teacher and coach says he didn’t plan on writing a sequel until fans kept asking for more of the characters from that book.
“I don’t think a day went by that someone didn’t ask me about a sequel. The first one was planned and written in 2000, but it took me until 2009 to get it published,” he said. “That first book was too long, and my editor asked me to cut some stuff out of it. I cut some of the stuff from the early part of the book. I ended up working some of it back in as flashbacks, but I still had a lot of material that I took out.”
He also had quite a few readers asking him for more of Matt Fagan, the cop who stopped a cult on Tennessee’s Raccoon Mountain from committing mass suicide in the first book.
So Cady set about expanding that unused material and crafting it into “Fatal Option,” a novel centered on the cult leader’s attempts to gain revenge on Fagan.
“This one starts five minutes after the first one ended,” he said. “If you’ve read the first one, you’ll enjoy this one. But you don’t have to have read the first one to understand what’s going on in the sequel. I filled in the blanks.”
Published by Amazon.com, the novel was released in print on Feb. 20 and should be available on Kindle in about a month. Cady will hold a book signing and question and answer session on Thursday from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at Sophie’s Place at 115 N. Hamilton St. in Dalton.
Cady, 66, taught science and helped coach football at Dalton High School for 32 years, and taught at Phoenix High School for another eight. But now he is retired and able to devote his time to writing and research.
“My main regret is that I always wanted to write, but I waited so long to do it. I started my first book when I was 50,” he said.
That book, an adventure-thriller set in Daytona Beach, Fla., remains unpublished.
“But I still think that is my best story,” he said. “I might try to get it published, but I’d have to go back and work on it. You learn as you go along. The biggest thing I’ve learned as a writer is how to show something, not tell it. I had a guy from out of town come by who wanted to buy (Cady’s latest novel), and he told me that when he was reading the first novel he could just feel the rain running down his neck during a scene on Raccoon Mountain. That’s what I like to hear.”
Cady says he’s already working on another book set during World War II. But will he return to Raccoon Mountain and Matt Fagan?
“I don’t know. I might. It depends on how this book does,” he said.
David Cady will hold a book signing and question and answer session on Thursday from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at Sophie’s Place at 115 N. Hamilton St. in Dalton. He will be at the Book Nook, at 229 N. Hamilton St. in Dalton, on Thursday, March 14, from 4:30 to 7 p.m.
His latest novel “Fatal Option” is available from Amazon.com for $16. His first published novel, “The Handler,” is available free on Kindle from Amazon through Friday.