I Spy

By Hannah Wallace March 31, 2005

The next great American novelist may be a Sarasota entrepreneur who spent six months tapping out a 220-page murder mystery on his home computer after his kids went to bed.

Jim Morrison, who sells low-cost, high-fashion eyeglass frames at his Web site and in a showroom of the same name on Main Street, has written a mystery novel called Nobody, co-published by iUniverse as part of its Editor's Choice program and by Sarasota's Lido Press.

The book is about an investment banker in the middle of an IPO who finds out his hippie brother living in India is accused of murder, and drops everything to try to save him. "A producer I talked to called it a classic fish out of water story," he says. It takes place in Manhattan, Moscow and Goa, India, and he traveled to all three places to research the novel.

Morrison says art did not imitate life, although he did live in Goa off and on in the 1980s and a real-life murder there of a European gave him "something to put a story around," he says. "The protagonist is truly fictional, but obviously my various experiences in business and travel have fit in."

The actual process of writing, he says, was a joy. "I really loved the writing so much I found I could be on a laptop in the laundry room doing it," he says.

Morrison has no pretension that his book is high art. "My audience was the businessperson on a plane who just wanted to have fun and not think of the lousy food," he says. But he's thrilled that "a fair amount" of books have been ordered on all the major online bookstores. (Nobody is not yet available in actual bookstores.)

Does everybody in Nobody live happily ever after? "Maybe," Morrison says coyly. "We could talk about the sequel."

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