The Journal, Tuesday, 7/18

Hey Folks,

If you aren’t distributing through Draft2Digital.com (D2D) yet, here’s another reason to do so.

I received an email this morning saying D2D has partnered with Findaway Voices to provide audio books starting, actually, today.

To read about this innovation, visit https://draft2digital.com/blog/d2d-partners-with-findaway-voices-to-provide-an-alternative-to-acx-starting-7182017/.

Of special note, if you use Findaway Voices via D2D, the former even waives their normal $49 admin fee. Worth checking out. Best of all, it gives readers one more way to find your work, and it gives you one more trickling stream of income.

Today, and Writing

I did little or nothing but reading and researching the stuff in “of Interest” below during the first few hours of the day.

I did get a pretty decent photo of the thumbnail moon early this morning and post it to Facebook. You can see that on my page at https://www.facebook.com/harvey.stanbrough/. Worth the effort if you like pictures of Miss Luna.

Went to the grocery at around 7. Then back to check Facebook, email, etc. Mowed part of the yard (the tall part) and didn’t get to the Hovel until after noon.

Man, this story is teaching me what Dean means when he says a novel is “twisted.” Whew!

A pretty good day of writing, though I didn’t hit my daily goal. Just got started too late. But I’ll take it.

Of Interest

Via The Digital Reader, see “Neo: A Word Processor for Authors” at http://www.hughhowey.com/neo-a-word-processor-for-authors/. Even though Neo is a dream for now, there are some gems in the article and in the comments.

If you’re looking for a distraction-free text editor, check out “7 Distraction-Free Writing Environments for Authors” at https://www.thebookdesigner.com/2011/07/7-distraction-free-writing-environments-for-authors/.

For those of you with WordPress websites, also via The Digital Reader, see “Four things I learned at WordCamp DC” at http://valiantchickendigital.com/blog/four-things-learned-wordcamp-dc/.

See Dean’s “Novel Three: Day One” at http://www.deanwesleysmith.com/novel-three-day-one/.

I haven’t fully understood it yet, but take a look at “Digital marketing scales…” from Mike Shatzkin via The Passive Voice at http://www.idealog.com/blog/digital-marketing-scales-create-new-opportunities-capable-publishers/.

Fiction Words: 2675
Nonfiction Words: 320 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 2995

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

Total fiction words for the month……… 10575
Total fiction words for the year………… 348532
Total nonfiction words for the month… 7530
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 115360
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 463892

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 600 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

The Journal, Monday, 7/17

Hey Folks,

For those of you following the saga of Bryan, I finally heard from him. He posted on Facebook yesterday.

That worried me initially because I know he isn’t allowed a computer at Job Corps. So I immediately wondered whether he was still there, etc.

I commented on his post “Bryan! You’re online? How’re you doing?”

And this morning he responded with “Yeah, I’m online. My roommate gave me one of his old phones so that’s how I’ve been online. As far as job corps it’s been going great. I love it here.”

Whew! (grin) So there you have it.

***

My friend Christopher Ridge commented on yesterday’s post. I also received a few comments via email, all helpful. Thanks, everyone.

The conscious mind definitely has something to do with my current slump, as it seems it always does. I’ll shake it off soon.

When I’m writing, I get excited about passing along what I know. So until I’m writing again, chances are these Journal entries will be a bit sparse, but I plan to keep posting anyway. Maybe a tidbit here or there will help someone else in some way.

Topic: Story Starters Revisited

All you need to begin a story is a character with a problem in a setting. That’s it. Everybody knows that by now.

Most often when I start a story, I start with a stark opening sentence. I like to grab the reader’s attention from the first word.

Then, to ground the reader — to pull the reader down into the story — I describe the setting through the character’s physical senses and opinions of that setting.

Then I just keep typing.

I’m not writing the story. I’m only recording it. The character is writing it. I feel fortunate that the characters allow me to run along with them.

That mindset enables me to be down in the story with the characters, experiencing it with them, rather than on a pedestal somewhere directing them.

My problem at the moment is trying to come up with that good, stark opening sentence I mentioned above. Usually they just occur to me. But did you read the first sentence of this paragraph? Lately I’ve been “trying” to come up with one.

As I’ve mentioned to others, any time you’re “trying” to do something, you’re invoking the conscious mind. When you’re “trying,” you’re thinking.

And thinking, where the act of writing is concerned, is never a good thing.

So for now I’m just gonna fuggiddaboudit.

Today, and Writing

Okay, I moved out to the Hovel at around 11.

After pecking about for awhile, I started working with Graham’s Road, an opening I wrote back on the 10th.

With a couple of trips up to the house to get more water for the portable cooler and more tea for myself, I had a fairly good day. At least I’m writing again.

No idea where this story’s going. At present it has TWO major conflicts. One is a dead body on a beach and the other is a return to life (I think) of the police chief’s dead wife. And no, her body isn’t the one on the beach. (grin)

Of Interest

Just because the guy’s amazing, see Dean’s “Novel Two: Day Nine: Finished” at http://www.deanwesleysmith.com/novel-two-day-nine-finished/.

From BizzaroWorld, “Photographer Broke Due to Copyright Lawsuit by Monkey” via The Passive Guy at http://www.thepassivevoice.com/2017/07/learn-a-language-but-not-a-human-one/. (He gives you a link to the rest of the article, but his take is priceless.)

Fiction Words: 3012
Nonfiction Words: 580 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 3592

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

Words brought forward…… 1070
Day 1…… 3012 words. Total words to date…… 4082

Total fiction words for the month……… 7900
Total fiction words for the year………… 345857
Total nonfiction words for the month… 7210
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 115040
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 460897

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 599 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

The Journal, Sunday, 7/16

Hey Folks,

Wow. Absolutely nothing today.

Tell you what. If I don’t break out of this whatever-I’m-in fairly soon — if I feel I don’t have much to offer you here — this Daily Journal might well begin appearing in your inbox with less frequency.

No reason to keep sending it every day just to keep a streak alive when I have nothing to say.

Today, and Writing

Nada. Primarily a day off and watching a little baseball.

I should be back tomorrow.

Of Interest

Just as a heads-up, see “Scammers Break The Kindle Store” at https://davidgaughran.wordpress.com/2017/07/15/scammers-break-the-kindle-store/ (From Let’s Get Digital via The Passive Voice).

Fiction Words: XXXX
Nonfiction Words: 90 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 90

Writing of

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

Total fiction words for the month……… 4888
Total fiction words for the year………… 342845
Total nonfiction words for the month… 6630
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 114460
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 457305

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 598 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

The Journal, Saturday, 7/15

Hey Folks,

A realization dawned on me this morning. I’m the kind who always needs an adversary. More often than not, the adversary is a time-siphoning situation, not a person.

One of my goals is to write at least one novel or novella per month this calendar year, and 15 on the year.

I’ve whiled away half of July already. I still have to write a novel for this month to meet the “one per month” part of the goal.

Beginning tommorrow, there are only 15 days left in this month. On several of those days I’ll be on vacation with my wife, visiting elderly family members in New Mexico.

I fully intend to meet my goal this month anyway. (grin) And this isn’t pie in the sky or expecting to “fail to success.” I’m not panicked in the slightest. Odd.

Today, and Writing

No writing again today. Finished the edit, then an enjoyable lunch and shopping with my wife.

See you then.

Of Interest

If you want to learn to design and brand fantasy covers, check “One Time Branding Fantasy Covers Workshop” at http://www.deanwesleysmith.com/one-time-branding-fantasy-covers-workshop/.

I had to laugh when I read “Use Your Thesaurus with Caution” as reported by The Passive Voice. The first sentence — are you ready? — is “As writers, words are our friends.” Huh. I didn’t even know writers WERE words. Yeah, you couldn’t pay me to read the rest of it. But if you want to, the “Read More” link goes to https://litworldinterviews.com/2016/10/27/use-your-thesaurus-with-caution/.

Fiction Words: XXXX
Nonfiction Words: 250 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 250

Writing of

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

Total fiction words for the month……… 4888
Total fiction words for the year………… 342845
Total nonfiction words for the month… 6540
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 114370
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 457215

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 597 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

The Journal, Friday, 7/14

Hey Folks,

Probably another full day of editing in my camp today. Then that will be behind me and I’ll turn my hand back to fiction.

Topic: POV—It Belongs to the Character, Not the Writer

This is massively important.

Summed into one sentence, Everything in every setting in your story or novel must be described through the POV character’s senses and flavored with the POV character’s opinions of the various aspects of that setting.

The POV character’s description of a setting enables the reader to see (hear, smell, taste, feel) it. The POV character’s OPINION of that setting brings it to life.

Combined, the POV character’s description of the setting and his opinions of that setting ground the reader in your story.

When the writer intrudes, inserting something himself rather than filtering it through the POV character, the passage often feels external to the story.

That’s because it is. It’s boring, uninteresting, and most often called an info dump. Most often, writers make such insertions to educate the reader, bring in back story, etc.

And every time they do, it’s unnecessary. Every time, that passage can be deleted without adversely affecting the story.

This is a master’s level difference in narration that took a long while (and a few hundred thousand words of fiction writing) to sink in for me, especially that “opinion” part.

I still practice it, and the most-often heard comment I get on my stories is, “I felt like I was there with the character.”

To make it easier, here are a couple of examples. The setting in both is a private library in a mansion in which the owner occasionally smokes a pipe. In an actual story, there would be more to it, but I think these will suffice as basic examples.

POV Character 1

The door squealed on its hinges as it opened. A couch and two wingback chairs came into view, both upholstered in a dank, forbidding, dark-brown leather. A bear skin rug glared menacingly up at me. Dark wooden shelves covered every wall from floor to ceiling. They were tight, and crammed full of books.

The dim, recessed lighting coupled with the stench of tobacco smoke only enhanced my impending sense of doom. The poor sap probably died just to escape the necessity of ever again entering this room.

POV Character 2

The door swung open easily, the hinges announcing me as if to invite me in. A couch and two wingback chairs came into view, both upholstered in a warm, chocolate brown. The shelves beyond were impressive, and economically spaced to house a voluminous collection of books.

The room was subtly, quietly lit with recessed lighting and aromatic, sweetly scented with a hint of black cherry pipe smoke. This must have been the decedent’s favorite room in the house.

Both POV characters provide the same description of the setting, but each has a very different opinion of the aspects of that setting.

I hope this helps.

Today, and Writing

I knew going in there would be no writing today unless a story insisted. I won’t finish the edit today either, but I’ll finish it tomorrow.

See you then.

Of Interest

Via The Passive Voice and from the Better Novel Project, see “How to Write a Fight Scene (in 11 Steps)” at http://www.betternovelproject.com/blog/fight-scene/. I was happy to see that apparently I’ve been doing it right for awhile now. (grin)

From Linda Maye Adams, several interesting items in her Around the Web post at https://lindamayeadams.com/2017/07/14/this-week-around-the-web-july-9-14-2017/, including one on an attractive looking course for writers. It costs less than many books, so I spent the $22. I’ll report later. UPDATE: I checked it out. It seems term-ridden. Not really of much use to me, but I encourage you to at least check out the courses. Maybe they’ll be right for you.

Via The Digital Reader, Bookbaby just published the results of a survey on self-publishing. You have to give them your contact information to download it at https://www.bookbaby.com/free-guide/official-self-publishing-survey-results/.

Fiction Words: XXXX
Nonfiction Words: 650 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 650

Writing of

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

Total fiction words for the month……… 4888
Total fiction words for the year………… 342845
Total nonfiction words for the month… 6290
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 114120
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 456965

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 596 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

The Journal, Sunday, 7/9

Hey Folks,

Doing very little thus far this morning but relaxing my way into the day.

And did very little the rest of the day so far too. Puttered around outside, a little yard work, a little more on the Hovel, some automotive stuff.

The highlight was a trip to the store for tea and locking gas caps. (Hey. There’s a title for you. “Tea and Locking Gas Caps.)

Today, and Writing

Nothing today. Unless a plane lands on my house tonight and I’m in it (plane or house) I’ll be writing fiction tomorrow. Probably all day.

See you then.

Of Interest

From yesterday, see Dean’s “Novel One: Day Seven…Finished” at http://www.deanwesleysmith.com/novel-one-day-seven-finished/. Go on and read today’s post too. (grin)

Via The Passive Voice, see Kris Rusch’s “Business Musings: Define Your Target Audience: The Intermediate Stages” at http://kriswrites.com/2017/07/05/business-musings-define-your-target-audience-the-intermediate-stages-brandingdiscoverability/.

Fiction Words: 1512
Nonfiction Words: 140 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 1652

Writing of OPENING for “Marshal Garrett”

Day 1…… 1512 words. Total words to date…… 1512 (fizzled)

Total fiction words for the month……… 3818
Total fiction words for the year………… 341775
Total nonfiction words for the month… 4400
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 112230
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 454005

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 591 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

The Journal, Thursday, 7/6

Hey Folks,

Topic: On Original Thought

Know what? Anyone who wants to be a writer should strive, every day, to have at least one original thought. On politics, religion, social hot buttons, or whatever.

To become a successful writer — by which I mean a writer who turns out work regularly and that work is regularly sold and read — the writer should strive ALL day every day to have original thoughts.

If you’re mimicking the sound bites that pass for news and social repartéé — well, good for you. But chances are, you won’t be successful, or not as successful as you could be.

So strive to have original thoughts. Then put them in your writing.

Don’t utter them aloud unless you’re among like-minded friends. Or maybe even then.

Really, there are no “like-minded” friends. If the collective of humanity had to be described by only one phrase, it would be “herd mentality.” If by one word, it would be “cliché.”

The cliché — well, you all know what a cliché is. And the herd mentality is an ugly, puke-grey-green-with-yellow-streaks-and-blotchy-pink-splotches communicable and highly contagious disease. It issues forth into the collective from an individual desire for acceptance.

See? Now that’s an original thought. It’s somewhat repulsive, but it’s also enticing. But I’ll bet you’re still reading.

Probably you’re thinking ‘Welp, Harvey’s off on another rant.’ To accompany that, you’re either grinning and wondering whether I’m about to write something with which you’ll agree.

Or you’re frowning a little and wondering whether what I’m about to write will be worth a counter argument on your part.

So you’re either about to have a little party in your mind or you’re girding your loins, so to speak, for battle.

But you’re wrong. That isn’t what this is about at all.

I actually have zero interest in causing you to think a certain way, to abide by a certain philosophy.

My only interest is that you be successful. That you experience for yourself a series of one-off thoughts that nobody else who has ever lived on this planet has experienced.

And who knows? Maybe that’s an even better definition of success in general than the one I offered earlier.

Today, and Writing

Probably no writing today. Striving to finish a copyedit of a novel today.

I actually wrote a little today, but just another opening that didn’t work. So I’m not counting it. (grin)

See you tomorrow.

Of Interest

From Digital Book World via The Passive Voice, see “8 Top Publishing Lessons Authors Need To Know” at http://www.digitalbookworld.com/2017/8-top-publishing-lessons-authors-need-to-know/. (Be careful not to swallow this article whole.)

DWS continues to impress with his current challenge. http://deanwesleysmith.com.

Fiction Words: XXXX
Nonfiction Words: 450 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 450

Writing of

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

Total fiction words for the month……… XXXX
Total fiction words for the year………… 337957
Total nonfiction words for the month… 2730
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 110560
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 448517

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 588 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

The Journal, Sunday, 7/2

Hey Folks,

I always hate registering a zero for fiction writing for the first day of the month. But it is what it is.

I didn’t clear the decks quite well enough to approach my much-touted WIP challenge in July. My wife’s birthday and vacation are both this month, and my son recently moved to Arizona, so visits will ensue. I’ll get back to the challenge sometime in the future. No rush.

For now I’m going to not think about challenges other than the ongoing novel-a-month thing and just get back to writing.

Yesterday, ideas were lining up outside my mental door and flinging themselves at it. I expect more of the same today.

I’ve also recognized something new about myself. I enjoy writing short stories, but I enjoy writing novels a lot more.

Even when I was writing short stories early last month, some small part of my subconscious was watching and hoping a novel would emerge.

I’m not sure what that means yet, but I suspect it will bode well for me. Stay tuned.

Topic: Writing Prompts

I’m not sure this is really big enough for a whole topic. But the notion of it is big enough that it deserves the tag.

As I looked through some of the writing-prompt sites this morning (see “Of Interest”), a thought occurred.

Poets and Writers’ weekly column “The Time Is Now” offers three prompts per week. They emphasize that one prompt is for poetry, one for fiction, and one for creative nonfiction.

I visited the site. As I scrolled down and read over some of the prompts, I got a great deal more inspiration as I read the paragraph beneath each prompt. So that’s one thing. And I actually got more than one idea from most of the paragraphs.

I also got some great, impactful story titles from some of their titles and derived from the paragraphs under the titles.

But another, much bigger relization is that ANY of the prompts can be used for fiction. Or poetry or creative nonfiction, I suppose. And that makes complete sense.

I’ve written several short stories that were based on poems I wrote years ago. I’ve written at least two novels based on poems I wrote earlier as well.

You can check out “The Time Is Now” at https://www.pw.org/writing-prompts-exercises/.

As you browse the list of other websites in the article in “Of Interest,” you’ll find more neat stuff.

Today, and Writing

Nothing again today.

See you tomorrow.

Of Interest

Via The Passive Voice, see “Self-Publishing Does Not Have to Cost You Anything at http://www.indiesunlimited.com/2017/06/26/it-self-publishing-does-not-have-to-cost-you-anything/. Amen.

Also via The Passive Voice, see “6 Websites with Great Writing Prompts” at https://medium.com/personal-growth/6-websites-with-great-writing-prompts-1c35288ef91a/. There’s actually more than writing prompt sites. Check out this one.

Have I said lately how much DWS amazes me? Check out “Novel One: Day One” at http://www.deanwesleysmith.com/novel-one-day-one/.

If you have books available through Smashwords, visit https://www.smashwords.com/dashboard/sitewidePromos to enroll your books in their annual July Summer/Winter Sale. You know. If you want to.

Fiction Words: XXXX
Nonfiction Words: 490 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 490

Writing of

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

Total fiction words for the month……… XXXX
Total fiction words for the year………… 337957
Total nonfiction words for the month… 600
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 107940
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 446387

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 584 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)……………………………… 176

The Journal, Saturday, 7/1

Hey Folks,

Okay. The roller coaster continues.

Maybe I’ll start the challenge today, and maybe I won’t. I’ll know by the end of the day.

Or maybe I need to adjust the challenge. I don’t know. Again, I hope I’ll know by the end of the day

Enjoying a visit with my youngest son, his wife, and three grandsons this morning.

Today, and Writing

No writing today.

See you tomorrow.

Of Interest

Via the Passive Guy, see “The Opening as Part of the Closing … of the Deal” at https://killzoneblog.com/2017/03/the-opening-as-part-of-the-closing-of-the-deal.html. This is a really great article. You might also bookmark The Killzone Blog. I did.

Fiction Words: XXXX
Nonfiction Words: 110 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 110

Writing of

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

Total fiction words for the month……… XXXX
Total fiction words for the year………… 337957
Total nonfiction words for the month… 110
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 107940
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 445897

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 583 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)……………………………… 176

The Journal, Tuesday, 6/27

Hey Folks,

Wow, there sure are a lot of blank spaces on my spreadsheet where there should be fiction numbers.

I don’t imagine that bothers you a lot since they’re my goose eggs and not yours. But just in case, I can promise you they’re going to change pretty soon. (grin)

Probably in a big way.

What follows is a bit of personal rambling, which is why it isn’t preceded by the word “topic.”

I might have mentioned here before an old Marine Corps acquaintance of mine. I won’t mention his name here. It wouldn’t mean anything to you, and with any luck at all he’s changed.

The guy was a corporal when I was a young PFC. He was my first NCO, and about the first one I met outside of boot camp.

But the guy was a head. (That’s what we called them back then.) He smoked dope. A lot.

That’s the only thing the guy ever introduced me to by the way of leadership. I looked up to him, and that’s what he offered me. Literally.

And yeah, I took him up on it. Until I realized I couldn’t function as well as I did otherwise while my head was melting. I like having a clear mind. Fortunately, I was smart enough to say No Thanks after the first couple of times.

I only mention that because I got back in touch with him around 3 years ago. About the time I was launching all this writing stuff seriously.

Excited, I told him all about Heinlein’s Rules and writing off into the dark. I told him eventually I hoped to write a novel in six months or less, and to turn out two or more every year thereafter. Along with the occasional short story when a tale didn’t want to stretch into a novel.

In short, he said it was impossible. That I’d burn out. That even trying it would destroy me.

I wonder what might have happened if I’d come away from my early Marine Corps experience actually trusting the guidance of that guy? What might I have been today if I had learned early on that it was better to listen to him than not?

Wow.

Anyway, I didn’t. And this year, if I weren’t messing about with challenges and the like, I’d have a novel a month made in the shade. I might even get close to two a month if I wanted to.

Still, I’m glad he and I met all those years ago. After all, who knows where I might be and what I might have accomplished if I hadn’t learned from him, inadvertently, to think and decide for myself?

And I actually like to think he’s one of the reasons I get so annoyed at “writing instructors” who pass along really bad advice. Not just the clichéd stuff, but maybe especially the clichéd stuff.

Maybe he’s one of the reasons, too, that I’m so stubborn about sharing what I’ve learned and know to be true. Especially the stuff that goes against conventional “wisdom” but actually works.

Odd thing, this Life Trip. Sure glad I get to tag along with the likes of you.

Today, and Writing

Yesterday, I wound up formatting everything, then created nine covers. I still need pics for three short stories, but everything else is done.

Today I’ll upload what I did yesterday to my distributors and BundleRabbit, then work to find a few more cover pics. Of course, all of that is after I get back from delivering Bryan to Tucson.

Around 5, getting Bryan up and ready to go. We’ll leave about 6 for Tucson.

I got back about 8:30 and turned-to, updating my main website. (Swing by and let me know what you think.)

I’ll also be tweaking it to implement some of Nate Hoffelder’s recommendations over the next week or so, but it’s mostly finished now.

Then I walked down the lane, clippers in hand, trimming overhanging mesquite tree limbs back. By the time I got back I thought sure it was 110 out there. It was only 96. I’ve gotten to where anything over 90 is rough on me I guess. Sigh.

Anyway, it’s almost 12:30 now. I’m gonna distribute the stories I completed covers for yesterday and then see what the rest of the day holds.

Well, publishing is a thoroughly disgusting process. I started around 1:30, uploading to D2D. Less than a half-hour later I was done with that part.

Then I went to Amazon. One book loaded cleanly. All the others encountered an “error,” asked me to try again later, then let me refresh the page, which took me back to the previous page. There they processed my upload again, etc. Sigh. Truly annoying.

When I do the challenge, I might well just not publish the stories that result. I love writing, but I’m really close to giving up on the idea of publishing them anyplace but my websites.

Anyway, I’m gonna post this, then go back to trudge through Amazon some more. Oh, and then BundleRabbit.

See you tomorrow.

Of Interest

If I may slip back into the personal for a moment, this film clip (about 25 minutes) should be mandatory viewing for any who call themselves Americans: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_oUtJxE4sjs. I especially believe it should be part of every college orientation session.

I recommend “Bookselling in the Age of Amazon” along with Passive Guy’s take on it. See http://www.thepassivevoice.com/2017/06/bookselling-in-the-age-of-amazon/.

If you write, typos are a continual and unavoidable nuisance. Check out these typos from famous authors’ works: https://www.theguardian.com/books/booksblog/2017/jun/16/misprint-the-legends-famous-typos-from-james-joyce-to-jk-rowling/. (Thanks, Gary.)

Fiction Words: XXXX
Nonfiction Words: 920 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 920

Writing of

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

Total fiction words for the month……… 45050
Total fiction words for the year………… 337957
Total nonfiction words for the month… 15630
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 105610
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 443567

The Daily Journal blog streak……………………………………… 579 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)……………………………… 176