My new book, The Queen of Tuesday, tells the true story of my grandfather, of Lucille Ball’s golden period, and of the affair they enjoyed on the soundstage of my imagination. Before this, I’d written fiction and non-fiction, historical books and contemporary. I wanted The Queen of Tuesday to tie together everything I’d done before. I hoped also to make it kind of unique—a mix of memoir and make-believe, of past and present, disguised as a biographical account of something that likely never happened.

My grandfather, who did once attend a party with Lucille, abandoned my grandmother when I was a baby; I never knew why. I wanted—along with whatever artistic challenges—to examine the storms that shipwrecked my family. And to learn about my grandfather, by examining what it means to sin when you consider yourself a moral man.