How To Write a Book This Weekend, Even If You Flunked English Like I Did

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He began publishing book reviews under his name. He continued to write Lange novels: Zero Cool , dealt with an American radiologist on vacation in Spain who is caught in a murderous crossfire between rival gangs seeking a precious artifact. The Venom Business relates the story of a smuggler who uses his exceptional skill as a snake handler to his advantage by importing snakes to be used by drug companies and universities for medical research. The snakes are simply a ruse to hide the presence of rare Mexican artifacts. The first novel that was published under Crichton's name was The Andromeda Strain , which would prove to be the most important novel of his career and establish him as a best-selling author.

The novel documented the efforts of a team of scientists investigating a deadly extraterrestrial microorganism that fatally clots human blood, causing death within two minutes. Crichton says he was "terrifically impressed" by the book - "a lot of Andromeda is traceable to Ipcress in terms of trying to create an imaginary world using recognizable techniques and real people. During his clinical rotations at the Boston City Hospital , Crichton grew disenchanted with the culture there, which appeared to emphasize the interests and reputations of doctors over the interests of patients.

Reflecting on his career in medicine years later, Crichton concluded that patients too often shunned responsibility for their own health, relying on doctors as miracle workers rather than advisors. He experimented with astral projection , aura viewing, and clairvoyance , coming to believe that these included real phenomena that scientists had too eagerly dismissed as paranormal.

Dealing was written under the pen name 'Michael Douglas', using their first names. Crichton wrote it "completely from beginning to end". Then his brother rewrote it from beginning to end, and then Crichton rewrote it again.

Around this time Crichton also wrote and sold an original film script, Morton's Run. Aside from fiction, Crichton wrote several other books based on medical or scientific themes, often based upon his own observations in his field of expertise.

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In , he published Five Patients , a book which recounts his experiences of hospital practices in the late s at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts. The book follows each of five patients through their hospital experience and the context of their treatment, revealing inadequacies in the hospital institution at the time.

The book relates the experiences of Ralph Orlando, a construction worker seriously injured in a scaffold collapse; John O'Connor, a middle-aged dispatcher suffering from fever that has reduced him to a delirious wreck; Peter Luchesi, a young man who severs his hand in an accident; Sylvia Thompson, an airline passenger who suffers chest pains; and Edith Murphy, a mother of three who is diagnosed with a life-threatening disease. In Five Patients , Crichton examines a brief history of medicine up to to help place hospital culture and practice into context, and addresses the costs and politics of American healthcare.

As a personal friend of the artist Jasper Johns , Crichton compiled many of his works in a coffee table book , published as Jasper Johns. It was originally published in by Harry N. Abrams, Inc.

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In , Crichton published his last novel as John Lange: Binary , relates the story of a villainous middle-class businessman, who attempts to assassinate the President of the United States by stealing an army shipment of the two precursor chemicals that form a deadly nerve agent.

The Terminal Man , is about a psychomotor epileptic sufferer, Harry Benson, who in regularly suffering seizures followed by blackouts, conducts himself inappropriately during seizures, waking up hours later with no knowledge of what he has done. Believed to be psychotic, he is investigated and electrodes are implanted in his brain. The book continued the preoccupation in Crichton's novels with machine-human interaction and technology.

How to Write a Book This Weekend, Even If You Flunked English Like I Did

The author agreed on the proviso that he could direct the film. ABC agreed provided someone other than Crichton wrote the script. The result, Pursuit was a ratings success. Crichton then wrote and directed the science fiction western-thriller film Westworld , which was his feature film directorial debut. It was the first feature film using 2D computer-generated imagery CGI. The producer of Westworld hired Crichton to write an original script, which became the erotic thriller, Extreme Close-Up Directed by Jeannot Szwarc , the movie disappointed Crichton.

The studio felt he had departed from the source material too much and had another writer adapt it for the film. In he wrote the a pilot script for a medical series, " 24 Hours ", based on his book Five Patients.


However networks were not enthusiastic. In , Crichton ventured into the nineteenth century with his historical novel The Great Train Robbery , which would become a bestseller. The novel is a recreation of the Great Gold Robbery of , a massive gold heist, which takes place on a train traveling through Victorian era England. A considerable portion of the book was set in London. Crichton had become aware of the story when lecturing at Cambridge University. He later read the transcripts of the court trial and started researching the historical period. The book was a best seller.

In , Crichton published Eaters of the Dead , a novel about a 10th-century Muslim who travels with a group of Vikings to their settlement. Eaters of the Dead is narrated as a scientific commentary on an old manuscript and was inspired by two sources. The first three chapters retell Ahmad ibn Fadlan 's personal account of his journey north and his experiences in encountering the Rus' , the early Russian peoples, whilst the remainder is based upon the story of Beowulf , culminating in battles with the 'mist-monsters', or 'wendol', a relict group of Neanderthals. Crichton wrote and directed the suspense film Coma , adapted from a novel by Robin Cook , a friend of his.

There are other similarities in terms of genre and the fact that both Cook and Crichton had medical degrees, were of similar age, and wrote about similar subjects. The film was a popular success.

In it was announced that Crichton would direct a movie version of his novel Eaters of the Dead for the newly formed Orion Pictures. He had never worked that way before, usually writing the book then selling it. He eventually managed to finish the book and it became a best seller. Crichton did the screenplay for Congo after he wrote and directed Looker During the s Crichton came close to directing a film of Congo with Sean Connery but the film did not happen. Eventually a film version was made in by another director.

In Telarium released a graphic adventure based on Congo. Because Crichton had sold all adaptation rights to the novel, he set the game—named Amazon —in South America, and Amy the gorilla became Paco the parrot.

How to Write a Book This Weekend, Even If You Flunked English Like I Did by Vic Johnson

The book, written like a glossary, with entries such as "Afraid of Computers everybody is ", "Buying a Computer", and "Computer Crime", was intended to introduce the idea of personal computers to a reader who might be faced with the hardship of using them at work or at home for the first time. It defined basic computer jargon and assured readers that they could master the machine when it inevitably arrived. In his words, being able to program a computer is liberation; "In my experience, you assert control over a computer—show it who's the boss—by making it do something unique.

That means programming it.

How to Write a Book This Weekend, Even If You Flunked English Like I Did

If you devote a couple of hours to programming a new machine, you'll feel better about it ever afterwards". In the book, Crichton predicts a number of events in the history of computer development, that computer networks would increase in importance as a matter of convenience, including the sharing of information and pictures that we see online today which the telephone never could. He also makes predictions for computer games, dismissing them as "the hula hoops of the '80s", and saying "already there are indications that the mania for twitch games may be fading.

Crichton started a company selling a computer program he had originally written to help him create budgets for his movies. Crichton wrote and directed Runaway , a police thriller set in the near future which was a box office disappointment. Crichton began writing Sphere in as a companion piece to The Andromeda Strain. His initial storyline began with American scientists discovering a year-old spaceship underwater with stenciled markings in English.

However, Crichton later realized that he "didn't know where to go with it" and put off completing the book until a later date. The novel was published in It relates the story of psychologist Norman Johnson, who is required by the U. Navy to join a team of scientists assembled by the U. Government to examine an enormous alien spacecraft discovered on the bed of the Pacific Ocean, and believed to have been there for over years. The novel begins as a science fiction story, but rapidly changes into a psychological thriller, ultimately exploring the nature of the human imagination.

The novel was adapted into the film directed by Barry Levinson and starring Dustin Hoffman. In Crichton was still hoping to make a film of Congo with Connery and Crichton himself directing but this did not eventuate.