It was an exciting time for Robert Greene when he began writing his next novel.
He would spend the next year reading a number of books by other writers, including the Pulitzer Prize-winning author David Foster Wallace.
But the best-selling author had other plans.
He had been planning to publish his first book for some time.
“I wanted to write about something different and different than what I was doing,” said Greene, a professor of English at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.
In August of 2019, Greene began writing the sequel to his best-seller, “Greene,” which is set in the late 1960s.
But before that, Greene was writing a novel about a young girl named Rose, which he said he had planned to publish in 2018.
“The idea that I’m going to publish it this year was sort of crazy to me,” he said.
“I thought, ‘I think I’ll just go ahead and do it this time.'”
After his third novel, “The Secret Life of the Outsiders,” was published in 2019, his focus shifted to other things.
But in early 2019, a book deal with Random House landed him a book contract for another novel.
That book deal didn’t last.
Greene and Random House canceled their book deal in December 2019.
He decided to move on to other projects.
“It was the only thing that had any hope of working,” he laughed.
In January 2020, he published a book about a teenage boy named Michael, which was set in a fantasy world in which Michael is a thief and his parents are pirates.
It was a hit.
“We had an immediate hit,” Greene said.
He also released “The Man Who Cried Wolf” in June 2020.
In October 2020, Greene published the novel “Losing My Religion,” set in an alternate future in which he has been kidnapped by aliens.
Greene, who is Jewish, said he was drawn to this world because it was different from his own world, where religion and religion alone were all that mattered.
He also felt a sense of belonging to it, he said, because he was writing about people who felt like they were the only people in the world.
“There was a sense that people cared about their own things and cared about the world, and it seemed to me that was really important to me, and that was the kind of world I wanted to make,” he added.
“When you have a real life that’s more than just the things you have to do to get by, it’s really valuable.
It’s like being in a place where you can be yourself.”
But being alone also meant being alone.
In order to keep his book from falling apart, Greene put a camera in his living room.
He said he didn’t want anyone else to see it.
“My wife and I are really lucky that we don’t have any other distractions, so we don’ have to worry about that.
But I have a lot of books and I’ve got a lot going on,” Greene added.
He wrote a book called “The Last Time,” a sequel to “The Outsiders” and a companion to his latest book, and he said it was a “perfect fit.”
“I didn’t know what to expect,” he recalled.
“It’s a story that’s not necessarily a sequel.
It doesn’t have a whole lot of sequels.
It just happens.
It happens really quickly.”
But in December 2020, “Lifting the Veil” was published.
“So I was kind of shocked and disappointed, but I’m kind of glad I had the experience to see what my writing could do, to see where it could take me,” Greene explained.
“To me, it was just an incredible book.
It had a huge amount of things I was already interested in,” he continued.
“When you put all those things together, it just became a lot more exciting and fulfilling.”
But while he enjoyed writing about his own life, he found he couldn’t write about the other people who had lived in his world.
So, he decided to do something about that, and the first book that he wrote about a fictional person in his own past was called “What I Did.”
“It’s the story of a fictional character, a young man named Peter Green,” he explained.
“And he goes on a journey to find out what it’s like to be a man in his 20s.
It turns out that in his time, people were more concerned about their families, and they were more focused on their own goals, than their family.”
He decided to take the name Peter Green out of the book and put it in a different context, writing it as a “person who is trying to get through the challenges of his own youth.”
“There’s a real story here that’s very real to me and very important to all of