Lorenzo Carcaterra speaks in Wilson

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Aug. 5—Acclaimed Author Lorenzo Carcaterra spoke to a rapt crowd at the Sunset Bar and Grill in Wilson on Thursday about his career, and his most recent book, "Nonna Maria and the Case of the Missing Bride." Carcaterra's lecture was the first of what Wilson Library Board President Kathleen Neville is hoping to make into a larger lecture series.

"I couldn't be happier," she said. "People were hanging on every word. Carcaterra is a great storyteller, and he did not disappoint,"

Neville said that the high attendance and good reception of the Carcaterra lecture and book signing likely means that the program will be ongoing. She also wants to get people from the film industry to potentially come speak for future lectures.

"We want to get people from the film industry, especially because there's so much going on in the Buffalo area these days," Neville said.

The event, which was catered with a complimentary buffet, opened with an Italian aria that was sung by Daeman College student, Madalyn Teal.

Carcaterra's book, Nonna Maria and the Case of the Missing Bride, centers around an elderly widow of the Italian island of Ischia, as she attempts to solve a mystery. He said that he's already finished writing its sequel, and just started writing the third book in the series. The character of Nonna Maria was heavily inspired by Carcaterra's own grandmother from the real island of Ischia, whom he said drank 14 cups of espresso every day, and lived to 89. Many of the characters are also based on people Carcaterra has known, including ones from Ischia which is off the coast of Naples.

During the lecture, Carcaterra also spoke of his career in television writing, including his time as a writer on "Law & Order," and the managing producer of the CBS series "Top Cops." Carcaterra also talked about how his writing career began in the newsroom of the New York Post, and being mentored by former New York City Detective turned TV Producer, Sonny Grosso. He also spoke of the work he's currently involved with in the production of a "Nonna Maria" TV series being made for Italian television.

During the Q&A portion of the event, Carcaterra talked about his writing process, and how writing one's own books differentiates between writing for television. In general he likes to write off the cuff without any outlines, as to him books can take on a life of their own. He also likes reading his work out loud to his English Bulldog, Rocco.

After the lecture, Neville mentioned that Carcaterra has already referred to the Wilson Library Board recommendations for future writers and creators to participate in its lecture series Neville said that no formal decisions have been made yet though on when their next event will be, or who will be the guest.

Carcaterra said that he enjoys doing book events like this, and is happy that people were so enthusiastic for it in Wilson.

"For me it was a lot of fun," said Carcaterra. "It's nice to see so many people come out to this. It was a big turnout so I was really pleased with that,"

He also said that his next book event would be in Westchester on Aug. 11.