The Journal, Friday, 8/18

Hey Folks,

Much of what follows is me thinking aloud. If you get something of value from it, good. But mostly it’s me using you as a sounding board. Sorry about that.

Wow. I’ve been at this literary stuff a very long time. And the marketing stuff. Both in-person, glad-handing bookstore managers and sitting for hours at book signings and all that, and the much less costly and smarter electronic marketing.

In fact, after I did some basic math I finally gave up (by and large) on book signings, etc. unless I happened to be speaking at a conference at the same time. From then through now, it’s all been electronic marketing.

The cornerstone of electronic marketing is a personal website. Even Kris Rusch’s book on Discoverability tells you so (see https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00NCJL9AG/).

I’ve had a personal website since websites were first a thing, around 1991. I’ve done and continue to do everything else in her book. Yet I’m not a million-seller. You know, yet. (grin)

In a moment of epiphany yesterday, I finally realized what I’m doing wrong.

In the early days, I was a successful (meaning well-nominated) poet and an instructor and an editor. I scribbled a little fiction now and then, but I didn’t become a fiction writer until April 2014 and a novelist until October 2014.

Today I’m still an instructor, a little, and a copyeditor, sometimes, but mostly I’m a fiction writer.

Yet as a holdover from the old days, I’m still devoting my website mostly to other writers. Not readers. Writers. And that’s what I’m doing wrong.

If there’s one truism that stands the test of time, it’s that (with very few exceptions) Writers don’t want to buy your fiction. They want you to buy THEIR fiction.

I’ve said as much to several writers over the years, yet I managed somehow to miss the point myself. Sigh.

If I toted 10 copies of every novel and nonfiction book I’ve written to the next meeting of the regional writers’ group, chances are I’d leave with a small stack of cash, zero nonfiction books, and 260 novels.

Okay, so how do I change my main website from one that’s geared primarily to sell my nonfiction books on writing and my back-burner services as a copy editor to one that actively engages readers who might want to buy my fiction?

I mean, almost all of my fiction is displayed on the main site, but what do I blog about? Nonfiction, how-to-write stuff.

That’s where the epiphany came in. A Writer doesn’t blog about writing techniques. A Writer blogs about his writing. His stories. His novels. His characters.

He also engages the readers.

Maybe he writes a short story every day for a month. Maybe he offers to let them write alternative endings. Maybe he asks them what crime/puzzle/mystery the characters should solve next.

Maybe he starts his own electronic magazine with one original novel and several short stories in each issue. (I know, it’s been done. But so what?)

So I have to give this some thought (he said, just as if he needed something else to do).

First and foremost, it only makes sense that I turn harveystanbrough.com into an author’s website. So that’s a given. After all, that’s the name I write under most of the time. The only question is how.

I also have hstanbrough.com and hestanbrough.com. And I need new covers for most of my nonfiction books (on writing). So maybe as part of the rebranding of that series, I’ll change the nonfiction author’s name to H. Stanbrough.

Then maybe I’ll switch all the “instructor” stuff over to hstanbrough.com. (Yeah, that was gonna be the writing-in-public site but if I do that, it would be better to post it over on the main site.)

The only question re that site would be whether to move this Journal over there too. I like that it’s running every day. I like the streak. But streaks have to break eventually, and really, I don’t post writing-specific advice all that often, do I?

Maybe I’ll just move it over to the main site and revamp it to appeal more to R-E-A-D-E-R-S than writers. I dunno. (shrug)

But back to the main site for a moment: what exactly do readers want from an author’s website?

Any ideas out there? Especially from those of you who have writer-websites? Do you blog about your stories and characters?

One thing I know for sure. It won’t be a site where the only blog post is to announce a new release.

Got a little bit of writing done today. Not much. Now that I’m in the same room with my business computer though, I took the internet off my writing ‘puter again. Maybe that’ll help.

Sure be glad when this funk breaks loose. Back tomorrow.

Of Interest

Via The Passive Voice, see “Seven Ways to Bring Characters Together” at https://mythcreants.com/blog/seven-ways-to-bring-characters-together/.

Via Linda Maye Adams, see Joanna Penn and Jerry Jenkins on “Writing Christian Fiction and Success Over a Long Career” at https://www.thecreativepenn.com/2017/08/14/writing-christian-fiction-long-career-jerry-b-jenkins/.

Fiction Words: 1205
Nonfiction Words: 840 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 2045

Writing of “Untitled PI Story” ()

Day 1…… 1205 words. Total words to date…… 1205

Total fiction words for the month……… 14786
Total fiction words for the year………… 377764
Total nonfiction words for the month… 9610
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 128720
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 506484

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 630 days
Calendar Year 2017 Novel Goal (15 novels or novellas)………………… 8 novels or novellas
Novels (since Oct 19, 2014)………………………………………… 26
Novellas (since Nov 1, 2015)……………………………………… 4
Short stories (since Apr 15, 2014)……………………………… 181

The Journal, Thursday, 8/17

Hey Folks,

Do Yourself a Favor and please read “Voyage to the Otherworld: A New Eulogy for Ray Bradbury” (via The Passive Voice) at https://www.theparisreview.org/blog/2017/08/15/voyage-to-the-otherworld-a-new-eulogy-for-ray-bradbury/.

***

The workshop yesterday was SUCH a blast! Everybody was on time, attentive, and hungry to learn. What can be better than that?

I’ll definitely do this one again in a month or two, but on a Saturday. Mostly so some of those who wanted to attend this time but couldn’t can do so.

I think of this as a “master’s level” workshop. It was a lot of things I’ve learned and made my own through hundreds of thousands of words of practice in stories and novels over the past almost 3 years. I’m thrilled to be able to pass along some of that.

***

I planned to write today. I did write an opening, but it didn’t work so I tossed it out. Then I thought (it was early) I’d go out and mow the yard while it was cool.

Mower wouldn’t start.

I began reminiscing about my days as a fairly good shade-tree mechanic.

I had an old ’64 Ford Falcon back then. Some days I fixed it at night so I could drive it to work the next morning, then fixed it at lunch so I could drive it home after work.

Hmm. Guess I wasn’t all that good or I wouldn’t have had to keep fixing it.

The poor thing was held together with spit and bailing wire. It had a brake cable off a bicycle for a throttle cable.

So anyway, I started “fixing” the lawn mower.

Now it’s almost 1:30, and I just got it back into good enough shape to take it to a lawnmower repair guy. Sigh.

Frustrating day. I’m gonna call it and go read.

Back tomorrow.

Of Interest

Via The Digital Reader, an extremely important post: See “5 Ways a Book Cover Could Hurt Sales — And How to Fix It” at https://insights.bookbub.com/ways-book-cover-hurt-sales-fix/. Not kidding. Go read this.

Via The Digital Reader, “Kindle Unlimited Funding Pool Grew in July 2017 as the Per-Page Rate Dropped” (and, ahem, writers are abandoning Kindle Unlimited as a result) at https://the-digital-reader.com/2017/08/16/kindle-unlimited-funding-pool-grew-july-2017-per-page-rate-dropped/.

If your head is a little off, via The Passive (?) Voice, see “What if Tarantino Made Spaghetti and Meatballs?” (film) at http://www.thepassivevoice.com/2017/08/what-if-tarantino-made-spaghetti-and-meatballs/.

Fiction Words: XXXX
Nonfiction Words: 370 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 370

Writing of “” ()

Day 1…… XXXX words. Total words to date…… XXXXX

Total fiction words for the month……… 13581
Total fiction words for the year………… 376559
Total nonfiction words for the month… 8770
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 127880
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 504439

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 629 days
Calendar Year 2017 Novel Goal (15 novels or novellas)………………… 8 novels or novellas
Novels (since Oct 19, 2014)………………………………………… 26
Novellas (since Nov 1, 2015)……………………………………… 4
Short stories (since Apr 15, 2014)……………………………… 181

The Journal, Wednesday, 8/16

Hey Folks,

I’ll be off to teach my workshop this morning at around 9, so I’ll post this early. Looking very forward to seeing some old friends again, and making one new friend. I’m also looking forward to seeing how the workshop goes. (grin)

UPDATE: Well, I forgot to post it early. The workshop went even better than I expected. I’m psyched. (grin)

As a reminder, in the workshop, I’ll cover Hooks, Openings, Grounding the Reader in the Story, Physical and Emotional Cliffhangers, Pacing and Endings.

At the end of the workshop, I’ll also talk a bit about Process. There will be some discussion of the conscious vs. the subconscious mind (their roles), trusting the subconscious, cycling and some other stuff.

I’ll off this workshop one more time, on a Saturday, probably in September or October. The room holds only maybe ten people max, and I currently have six who are interested.

I’ll announce the specific date here later.

Back to writing tomorrow!

***

If anybody else out there is hyper-interested in mob stuff, check out “I Heard You Paint Houses” by Charles Brandt. Absolutely excellent.

This is about real gangsters and real life, not the droopy-pants wannabe “gangsta” brats roaming around being annoying.

Specifically, if you want to learn what really happened to Hoffa and JFK, buy the book. This stuff isn’t opinion or conjecture.

I don’t read a lot of nonfiction that isn’t about writing, but “I Heard You Paint Houses” was excellent both as a research resource and to satisfy my morbid curiosity.

Of Interest

Via The Digital Reader, If you’re still using Smashwords, see “Smashwords Introduces “Special Deals”- Automated Merchandising of Onsale Ebooks” at http://blog.smashwords.com/2017/08/smashwords-introduces-special-deals.html.

(For Bonnie ) via The Passive Guy, “Why Note-Taking by Hand Is Better for Your Brain” at http://www.intellectualtakeout.org/article/why-note-taking-hand-better-your-brain/. (grin)

Fiction Words: XXXX
Nonfiction Words: 310 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 310

Writing of “” ()

Day 1…… XXXX words. Total words to date…… XXXXX

Total fiction words for the month……… 13581
Total fiction words for the year………… 376559
Total nonfiction words for the month… 8400
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 127510
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 504069

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 628 days
Calendar Year 2017 Novel Goal (15 novels or novellas)………………… 8 novels or novellas
Novels (since Oct 19, 2014)………………………………………… 26
Novellas (since Nov 1, 2015)……………………………………… 4
Short stories (since Apr 15, 2014)……………………………… 181

The Journal, Tuesday, 8/15

Hey Folks,

Via The Digital Reader, The Huffington Post (whom I would never and am not now promoting) published an article titled “The 4 Great Myths of Book Publishing.”

You can read the full article at http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/the-4-great-myths-of-book-publishing_us_5988e9ebe4b08a4c247f252d/, but I’ll save you the trouble.

There are actually a lot more myths about traditional publishing than four, but we’ll go with the ones they list.

According to the article, the myths are that a traditional publisher will

  1. aggressively promote your book to the widest possible readership,
  2. ensure your book gets on the shelves of all the nation’s bookstores,
  3. print your book’s text in exactly the way you conceive and arrange it, and
  4. provide you with a sizable monetary advance.

Of course, the article goes on to say no, they won’t. Because No, They Won’t.

The “remedy” the author of the article recommends for points 1, 2, and 4 (3 is just silly) is to do it yourself. But still use a traditional publisher.

So let me get this straight:

According to the author of the article, you should develop your own promotion plan, promote your book aggressively yourself to ensure more people order it in bookstores, “be flexible” regarding layout, and “be grateful if you’re offered any advance at all.”

So in addition to writing the book in the first place, you have to do everything else too. Okay, I’m good with that.

But in return for your effort, you should still give ALL RIGHTS FOR THE LIFE OF THE COPYRIGHT to the traditional publisher and receive around 12% of the net royalties for as long as they decide to sell your book.

Oh, and if you also have an agent, he/she gets 15% of that 12%.

Uhhhhh, no.

This is it, folks. This truly is your forehead slapping moment. Please don’t pass it up.

If you have to do all that anyway, Publish It Yourself and pocket 100% of the net royalties.

And MOST importantly, Keep Your Copyright (your property) for the rest of your life plus 70 years.

You STILL have to develop your own promotion plan, aggressively promote your book, and you can do the layout yourself (or pay to have it done — see https://covertoupload.com/).

Of course, you’ll have to forego receiving an advance you wouldn’t have gotten anyway. Darn it. Oh, and somewhere, some village idio— er, agent — will go a little hungry. But so what?

Copyright is property, folks. Your property.

Don’t give it away, and don’t sell out for a pittance.

***

I got up a little late this morning, looking forward to the second session of the workshop I’m taking with Dean.

Then I checked my email and was slapped around by the article referenced above. I wrote the post above, then posted it to the main site to go live next Tuesday.

Now to immerse myself in the workshop. Ahhhhh.

Well, I fully expected to write fiction today, but I didn’t. I have the seminar tomorrow, so that will be a long day. So today I took a day off just to read and enjoy.

Back tomorrow.

Of Interest

Via The Passive Voice, see “The definitive guide to SEO for authors” at http://www.thepassivevoice.com/2017/08/the-definitive-guide-to-seo-for-authors/. This is something at which I need to get a LOT better.

Via The Digital Reader, see “6 places to find free and discounted ebooks” at https://www.cnet.com/how-to/6-places-to-find-free-and-discounted-ebooks/. I list this one only so you can check to see whether your books are listed illegally.

See “WMG Publishing Bought a Bookstore” at http://www.deanwesleysmith.com/wmg-publishing-bought-a-bookstore/.

Fiction Words: XXXX
Nonfiction Words: 590 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 590

Writing of “” ()

Day 1…… XXXX words. Total words to date…… XXXXX

Total fiction words for the month……… 13581
Total fiction words for the year………… 376559
Total nonfiction words for the month… 8090
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 127200
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 503759

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 627 days
Calendar Year 2017 Novel Goal (15 novels or novellas)………………… 8 novels or novellas
Novels (since Oct 19, 2014)………………………………………… 26
Novellas (since Nov 1, 2015)……………………………………… 4
Short stories (since Apr 15, 2014)……………………………… 181

The Journal, Monday, 8/14

Hey Folks,

I know at least one writer who still does extensive research before writing.

That said, most of us use the hunt-and-peck method.

In the midst of a story (sometimes a sentence) we pop online for a moment, do some quick research on the type of tree the hero is leaning against, which months a particular river flows, etc. Then we pop back into the story, add what we learned and move on.

Most often, that search is accomplish on Google or Bing or one of the other popular search engines.

For us, now there are a lot more resources. Check out “Of Interest” below.

***

If you know me at all, you know I’m dead-set against exclusivity in book selling — specifically, distributing only through Amazon.

For yet another take on why, see “The Only Rule Amazon Truly Cares About” at https://davidgaughran.wordpress.com/2017/08/12/the-only-rule-amazon-truly-cares-about/ (via The Digital Reader and David Gaughran).

***

I spent some time going back over the first session of the workshop I’m taking with Dean. Didn’t find what I was looking for.

Also read the first few pages of the James Patterson novel Private. I hoped to be impressed. My intention was to be impressed so I’d want to go back through it later and learn from him.

But I wasn’t impressed. A few years ago I said I thought he wasn’t a very good writer but he’s a masterful marketer. I thought I’d give his work another shot, but my experience today only bolstered that negative opinion.

On the upside, it was unimpressive enough that it made me think more highly of my own work. So there’s that. (grin)

Finished the handout for Wednesday’s seminar. Also got some laundry done, used the string trimmer on some unruly grass alongside the carport, etc.

Of Interest

For those of you who like reading about other writers’ process, see “Business Musings: The Third 2017 Process Blog” at http://kriswrites.com/2017/08/02/business-musings-the-third-2017-process-blog/.

Via The Passive Voice, see “The state of ebooks: Anti-DRM sentiments…” at http://www.thepassivevoice.com/2017/08/the-state-of-ebooks-anti-drm-sentiments-at-worldcon-75/.

Via The Digital Reader and Paul Biba, check out “Ten search engines for researchers that go beyond Google” at https://www.jisc.ac.uk/blog/ten-search-engines-for-researchers-that-go-beyond-google-11-jul-2013/.

Additionally, be sure to see these “more well-known search engines and databases” at https://www.jisc.ac.uk/blog/ten-search-engines-for-researchers-that-go-beyond-google-11-jul-2013#/.

Fiction Words: XXXX
Nonfiction Words: 370 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 370

Writing of “” ()

Day 1…… XXXX words. Total words to date…… XXXXX

Total fiction words for the month……… 13581
Total fiction words for the year………… 376559
Total nonfiction words for the month… 7500
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 126610
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 503169

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 626 days
Calendar Year 2017 Novel Goal (15 novels or novellas)………………… 8 novels or novellas
Novels (since Oct 19, 2014)………………………………………… 26
Novellas (since Nov 1, 2015)……………………………………… 4
Short stories (since Apr 15, 2014)……………………………… 181

The Journal, Saturday, 8/12

Hey Folks,

Well, I know at least part of today will include a trip to Sierra Vista. I hope part of the trip will include lunch. (grin)

This morning after my routine, I designed two covers, created two promo docs, then published two short stories to D2D and Amazon, then uploaded them to BundleRabbit.

Finally I added the covers and universal buy links to the Short Fiction page on my website. I took a moment to do some multiplication. Goodness. I have 181 short stories now.

Went to SV around 10 and got back a little after 1. I’ll work a little more on the handout today, then call it a day.

Kind’a silly keeping count of what I write for the handout too. I’ll stop that. If I do the book later, I’ll count it then.

Of Interest

See the comments on “Running Through A Novel” at http://www.deanwesleysmith.com/running-through-a-novel/#comments/.

Via The Passive Voice, see “Aggressive Growth (Branding/Discoverability)” at http://kriswrites.com/2017/08/09/business-musings-expand-your-target-audience-3-aggressive-growth-brandingdiscoverability/.

Via Pronoun (the distributor) see “Which Social Media Channel Sells The Most Books?” at https://theverbs.com/which-social-media-channel-sells-the-most-books-69d0cd838748/. Interesting.

Fiction Words: XXXX
Nonfiction Words: 180 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 180

Writing of “” ()

Day 1…… XXXX words. Total words to date…… XXXXX

Total fiction words for the month……… 13581
Total fiction words for the year………… 376559
Total nonfiction words for the month… 7030
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 126140
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 502699

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 624 days
Calendar Year 2017 Novel Goal (15 novels or novellas)………………… 8 novels or novellas
Novels (since Oct 19, 2014)………………………………………… 26
Novellas (since Nov 1, 2015)……………………………………… 4
Short stories (since Apr 15, 2014)……………………………… 181

The Journal, Tuesday, 8/8

Hey Folks,

Well, I got a good night’s rest last night. Still not feeling up to par, but a little better maybe.

I decided to offer the ebook edition of The Rise of a Warrior to users of Facebook (and you) free of charge. You can read a description of the book at http://harveystanbrough.com/the-rise-of-a-warrior/.

The Rise of a Warrior is a stand-alone book, but it’s also chronologically the first book of the Wes Crowley series. All you have to do is email me to let me know whether you want Kindle, .epub or .pdf.

Thus far (about 6 hours into the offer) I’ve had one email from one guy who took me up on it. (grin) If anybody out there wants it, let me know.

This is a promo thing I’m doing. I’ll keep the offer open for probably a week.

***

Started a new online workshop with DWS this morning. As is usual, I learned something even in the introductory week. The course hasn’t yet paid for itself but it probably will by the end of next week’s session.

I’m being intentionally vague about this, but after I’ve finished the workshop I’ll tell you which one it was and critique it here. As is the case with most of his craft workshops, I expect to learn things I can use across the genres.

Today, and Writing

I rose at my normal time and wheedled away the entire morning. Still not feeling fully up to speed, so I haven’t pressed anything. In fact, I read quite a bit this morning, a nonfiction titled “I Hear You Paint Houses.”

The book is based on interviews with a man who claims to have been complicit in the disappearance of Jimmy Hoffa. He was also one of Hoffa’s two closest friends.

The book is incredibly detailed, with many facts about the man’s personal experiences from childhood up through World War II (thus far). So I guess I could say I spent the morning doing research. (grin)

Finally, a little after noon, I put down my Kindle and came to write this stuff and then maybe write a little fiction.

No, I tweaked the header on my website, then the header on my HarveyStanbrough.com Facebook page. Simplified the text. An hour and a half later, I decided to make this a nonwriting day and maybe read some more.

Back tomorrow.

Of Interest

Of possible interest, see “Adobe Spark” courtesy of The Passive Guy at http://www.thepassivevoice.com/2017/08/adobe-spark/. I’m thinking this might be a handy way to create book covers for some of you who want to give it a shot. There’s a direct link to try Spark (it’s free) at the bottom of his post.

Fiction Words: XXXX
Nonfiction Words: 460 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 460

Writing of “” ()

Day 1…… XXXX words. Total words to date…… XXXXX

Total fiction words for the month……… 13581
Total fiction words for the year………… 376559
Total nonfiction words for the month… 3510
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 122620
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 499179

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 620 days
Calendar Year 2017 Novel Goal (15 novels or novellas)………………… 8 novels or novellas
Novels (since Oct 19, 2014)………………………………………… 26
Novellas (since Nov 1, 2015)……………………………………… 4
Short stories (since Apr 15, 2014)……………………………… 179

The Journal, Monday, 8/7

Hey Folks,

A little under the weather today. Nothing serious, just blah. Not sure how much writing I’ll get done, if any. Feels like a day of doing zip.

I added my most recent novel, a whodunit mystery, to the website. You can see it at http://harveystanbrough.com/the-implications/.

Topic: Ebook Editors (actually, formatting programs)

This stuff was going to go into “Of Interest” but it’s too important. Especially for those who are new to ebook publishing or thinking about ebook publishing.

If you fit either of those categories, or if you are frustrated with your current formatting process or software, here are a few articles I strongly recommend you read.

One: “How to Use Reedsy’s Book Editor to Format Ebooks and Print for Free” at https://selfpublishingadvice.org/how-to-use-reedsys-book-editor-to-format-ebooks-and-print/.

I’m not wild about the “‘for’ free” appelation, but the article itself is pretty good. I won’t be using Reedsy myself because

1. It’s browser based. There’s no program to download and I’m more of a want-it-on-my-computer kind of guy.

2. I’m happy with MS Word for my formatting. But I’ve been at it a long while so it’s easy-peasy.

Two: In light of my second note above, here’s a link to my free “The Essentials of Digital Publishing,” which explains in detail how to format your Word .doc for submission to Draft2Digital, Smashwords, et al (who then convert your .doc to .epub, .mobi and .pdf): http://harveystanbrough.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/DPubV2X.pdf/. I sold a bunch of copies for $10, and this is free. Just sayin’.

Three: For another article on using MS Word as a formatting platform, see “Book Production Advice: How to Format an Ebook using Microsoft Word” at https://selfpublishingadvice.org/book-production-advice-how-to-format-an-ebook-using-microsoft-word/. I’ve read it. It’s pretty good, but only for formatting ebooks.

Four: If you’re a Mac user, I recommend Vellum as I’ve heard nothing but great things about it. It’s not available for PCs, but you can read “Production: Vellum as a Formatting Tool for Print” at https://selfpublishingadvice.org/vellum-for-print/.

Five: Finally, if you’d like a simple but thorough guide into the ins and outs of Microsoft Word, check out my free blog series “Microsoft Word for Writers” at http://harveystanbrough.com/microsoft-word-for-writers/. Nothing I hate worse than receiving a manuscript for editing and seeing that the writer still used the Tab bar or the space bar to indent the first line of paragraphs. Ugh.

Today, and Writing

Rolled out way early again. Not sure why, and I didn’t feel well. I thought I might start another story, but if I wrote something today it would be just to put words on a page. So calling today a non-writing day.

Went to the grocery and the post office, did a load of laundry, read a little, watched some TV. Stuff like that.

Back tomorrow.

Of Interest

See the stuff in the Topic above.

Via The Passive Voice, see “Note to All Creatives: Marketing is Your Job” at https://medium.com/the-mission/note-to-all-creatives-marketing-is-your-job-6c4adecc38bf/.

Also, an article about one part of the decline of humanity (in my opinion). Like cursive writing, doing math without calculators, and dictionaries beginning to insist that “imply” and “infer” are interchangeable, there inevitably comes a time when it’s easier to change the technology than to teach skills to those who use it. See “The End of Typing: The Internet’s Next Billion Users Want Video and Voice” at https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-end-of-typing-the-internets-next-billion-users-will-use-video-and-voice-1502116070/.

Fiction Words: XXXX
Nonfiction Words: 500 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 500

Writing of “” ()

Day 1…… XXXX words. Total words to date…… XXXXX

Total fiction words for the month……… 13581
Total fiction words for the year………… 376559
Total nonfiction words for the month… 3050
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 122160
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 498719

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 620 days
Calendar Year 2017 Novel Goal (15 novels or novellas)………………… 8 novels or novellas
Novels (since Oct 19, 2014)………………………………………… 26
Novellas (since Nov 1, 2015)……………………………………… 4
Short stories (since Apr 15, 2014)……………………………… 179

The Journal, Tuesday, 8/1

Hey Folks,

Well, five are signed up for the writing intensive now. Three slots left, and one more would-be attendee is thinking about it.

Today I’ll endeavor to finish my July novel. (grin) Whenever I finish, I’ll have 8 novels or novellas at the beginning of the 8th month of the year.

With my annual goal of 15 novels or novellas on the year, I’m going to plan to write two novels per month for August, September and October. Absolutely no reason I shouldn’t be able to do that.

During August also I’m prepping for and teaching the intensive, and I’ll begin another online workshop with Dean to keep advancing my own skills. All in all, wow do I ever love this life.

***

I’ve talked a lot about Draft2Digital, a distributor for ebooks. They’ve added Overdrive now to their distribution list, helping writers get into a boatload of libraries. Check it out at https://draft2digital.com/blog/.

Today, and Writing

I started writing (inside) at about 8:45. By 9 I realized the last chapter I wrote yesterday was a false ending. And it was actually longer than the last chapter I wrote today. (grin) Go figure.

I ditched it.

I sat back for a minute, then put my fingers on the keyboard again. A little less than an hour later, I’d written 1118 words and the thing was done. And it’s tight.

I’ll take a break now, then start the next one.

Started writing again around noon. All I had was a mental image of two guys in a military truck in a foreign country in a driving rain watching something. The driver wanted to be there. The passenger did not.

A little over 1100 words in the first hour. Then I wanted a cigar so I packed up and headed for the Hovel. Turned on the swamp cooler out there, lit a cigar and hammered out another thousand words.

Then the squirrels who live in the wood and junk pile just outside the door of the Hovel started sounding off with a bark that sounds like birdsong.

I got up and went outside. I said, “Little Bit, are you out here?”

She came walking out from under the travel trailer we use as a spare bedroom. So now I have cat-alarm squirrels.

I packed up and headed back to the house.

At 2:50, I returned to the story.

I wrote ’til around 3:30, then called it. Good day.

Back tomorrow.

Of Interest

Read Dean’s “Novel Four: Finished. Challenge Made!” at http://www.deanwesleysmith.com/novel-four-finished-challenge-made/. Be sure to read the bold face stuff too below the post. That starts with “Total for Challenge.”

Via The Passive Voice, see “The Power of the Unlikeable Protagonist” at http://writerunboxed.com/2017/07/01/the-power-of-the-unlikeable-protagonist/.

Fiction Words: 3856
Nonfiction Words: 460 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 4316

Writing of A Kindness (tentative title, novel)

Day 1…… 2738 words. Total words to date…… 2738

Writing of The Implications (formerly tentatively titled Graham’s Road)
362978
Words brought forward…… 1070
Day 1…… 3012 words. Total words to date…… 4082
Day 2…… 2675 words. Total words to date…… 6757
Day 3…… 2181 words. Total words to date…… 8938
Day 4…… 4913 words. Total words to date…… 13851
Day 5…… 2543 words. Total words to date…… 16394
Day 6…… 1207 words. Total words to date…… 17601
Day 7…… 0816 words. Total words to date…… 18417
Day 8…… 0869 words. Total words to date…… 19286
Day 9…… 0503 words. Total words to date…… 19789
Day 10… 0761 words. Total words to date…… 20550
Day 11… 0653 words. Total words to date…… 21203
Day 12… 3725 words. Total words to date…… 24928
Day 13… 4125 words. Total words to date…… 29053
Day 14… 1118 words. Total words to date…… 30171 (done)

Total fiction words for the month……… 3856
Total fiction words for the year………… 366834
Total nonfiction words for the month… 460
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 119570
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 486404

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 614 days
Calendar Year 2017 Novel Goal (15 novels or novellas)………………… 8 novels or novellas
Novels (since Oct 19, 2014)………………………………………… 26
Novellas (since Nov 1, 2015)……………………………………… 4
Short stories (since Apr 15, 2014)……………………………… 179

The Journal, Friday, 7/28

Hey Folks,

I get a lot of questions that I can answer, in general, with this one sentence:

“In storytelling, no single aspect is more important than the ability to pull the reader into the story and keep him there.”

I’m hoping to teach an intensive on how exactly to do that in the near future. The intensive will be geared for no more than 8 attendees. Two writers are already signed up.

I’ll cover

  • Openings,
  • Hooks,
  • Grounding the Reader in the Story,
  • Physical and Emotional Cliffhangers, and
  • Pacing.

Given time, I’ll talk a little about Endings as well.

The intensive will begin at 10 a.m. and run through about 4 p.m. It will be in St. David, Arizona. The cost will be $100.

After spending a few hours wrangling with writers via email (grin), I’m letting the 2 writers who are already signed up pick the date for the intensive.

I’ll pass along the firm date as soon as they let me know. Then if at least 4 writers sign on, the class will make.

I can’t promise I’ll do this again, maybe ever. So if you’re within driving distance and you’re interested, let me know.

Today, and Writing

Got up early (on time, for me) and put together the beginnings of the intensive I’m planning to teach. Information above.

Today is the third to the last vacation day for Mona, so whatever she wants to do is the priority. But I’ll write at least a little today. (grin)

Opened the story at 8:30 a.m. Went to Sierra Vista on a shopping trip at 9 a.m. (grin)

Back at the story after a long session of email, and realized today will be another cycling, cleaning, straightening day on the story. Sigh. A character came up with a new twist, and of course it has to be worked in through the whole book.

But I’m determined this will be the last day for that. Beginning tomorrow I’ll be powering through the rest of the story to the end.

Well, determined or not, I’ll have one more partial day of cycling. This thing is really twisted. 🙂 So tomorrow will be cycling and writing.

Back tomorrow.

Of Interest

Via The Passive Voice, see “Your Book Needs These 6 Psychological Ingredients” at http://www.thepassivevoice.com/2017/07/your-book-needs-these-6-psychological-ingredients/. He links from there to the full article.

DWS talks on a podcast about being a prolific writer. Check it out at https://www.theprolificwriter.net/episode-33-dean-wesley-smith-on-the-myths-of-writing-and-publishing/.

If you’re a writer of SF or Fantasy, see Nate Hoffelder’s post on a prestigious new fan-based award at https://the-digital-reader.com/2017/07/27/voting-fan-choice-dragon-awards-ends-28-august/.

You can find more information at http://awards.dragoncon.org/faq/candidate-faq/.

Fiction Words: 761
Nonfiction Words: 410 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 1171

Writing of Graham’s Road (tentative title, novel or novella)

Words brought forward…… 1070
Day 1…… 3012 words. Total words to date…… 4082
Day 2…… 2675 words. Total words to date…… 6757
Day 3…… 2181 words. Total words to date…… 8938
Day 4…… 4913 words. Total words to date…… 13851
Day 5…… 2543 words. Total words to date…… 16394
Day 6…… 1207 words. Total words to date…… 17601
Day 7…… 0816 words. Total words to date…… 18417
Day 8…… 0869 words. Total words to date…… 19286
Day 9…… 0503 words. Total words to date…… 19789
Day 10… 0761 words. Total words to date…… 20550

Total fiction words for the month……… 24368
Total fiction words for the year………… 362325
Total nonfiction words for the month… 10850
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 118680
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 481005

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 610 days
Calendar Year 2017 Novel Goal (15 novels or novellas)………………… 7 novels or novellas
Novels (since Oct 19, 2014)………………………………………… 25
Novellas (since Nov 1, 2015)……………………………………… 4
Short stories (since Apr 15, 2014)……………………………… 179