The Journal: On Daily Word-Count Goals

In today’s Journal * Sympathy * Thanks, I needed that * Topic: On Daily Word-Count Goals * A Final Word on Goals for This Year * The Journal Archives * Of Interest * The Numbers First, my heartfelt sympathy for the family, friends and fans of Coach John Madden, who passed away unexpectedly yesterday morning at the age of 85. I was fortunate that I got to witness much of his career as a coach and then as a coach in the broadcast booth. Coach Madden will be sorely missed. My sincere thanks to reader Larry P who emailed me … Read more

The Journal: Reader Taste—The Final Take

In today’s Journal * Quotes of the Day * Topic: Reader Taste—The Final Take * Of Interest * The Numbers Quotes of the Day “[T]he big money, I think, for long term is probably in self publishing.” New York Times bestselling author Kat Martin “I think after Christmas would be better for publication: I am hardly a Christmas present.” Oscar Wilde Topic: Reader Taste—The Final Take (and a question for you) In an email regarding my recent post on reader taste vs. writer skill, my young friend wrote, “… what if one reader doesn’t like a book but another reader … Read more

The Journal: Reader Taste?

In today’s Journal * Quotes of the Day * Posts about Christmas * Topic: Reader Taste? I Don’t Think So * Of Interest * The Numbers Quotes of the Day “It’s very important to know what you don’t like. A big part of innovation is saying, ‘You know what I’m really sick of?’ … ‘What am I really sick of?’ is where innovation begins.” Jerry Seinfeld “You don’t question your standards based on what anyone else is doing. You don’t look over at someone else’s race and think, I’m doing a bad job because you’re going faster. You just focus … Read more

The Journal: Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays

In today’s Journal * Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays * Another WMG Workshop Sale * A Note from Mona * Of Interest * The Numbers Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays Good morning! Sorry it’s been awhile. I just haven’t had much to say. Anyway, I wish all of you a happy Christmas Eve and a merry Christmas, even if you personally don’t celebrate the actual holiday. I understand that not everyone does. If you celebrated Hannukah, I hope that was a rewarding time for you. The same for those who will celebrate Kwanzaa or any other holidays at this general … Read more

The Journal: Reflections

In today’s Journal * Quotes of the Day * Reflections 1-5 * Of Interest * The Numbers Quotes of the Day “To move past obstacles, you need to move.” Lost Attribution “The author is having such a good time in telling his tale that he gives us necessarily a good time in reading it.” Clayton Meeker Hamilton in A Manual of the Art of Fiction (1919) about Treasure Island “The willingness to accept responsibility for one’s own life is the source from which self-respect springs.” Joan Didion Reflection 1—On My Silly Goal Reflecting on my own goal of writing at … Read more

The Journal: A Little More on Goals and Myths and My Goal

In today’s Journal * Quote of the Day * Going Back * A Little More on Goals and Myths * My Writing Goal for 2022 * Of Interest * The Numbers Quote of the Day “[C]ritical voice is non-existent for me. I just do the very best I can every time and release and move on.” Dean Wesley Smith Going back to the earlier delivery time. I enjoy writing this in the morning and then reporting fiction the next day. Reporting the same day adds pressure, and nobody needs that. (grin) I should have known better than to mess with … Read more

The Journal: Goals and Challenges

In today’s Journal * Quotes of the Day * Note * Goals and Challenges and Getting Ready * Of Interest * The Numbers Quotes of the Day “You cannot push any one up a ladder unless he be willing to climb a little himself.” Andrew Carnegie (via The Passive Voice) “Ideas are more powerful than guns. We would not let our enemies have guns, why should we let them have ideas.” Joseph Stalin “Perfectionism isn’t about being perfect; it’s about the fear of appearing imperfect.” Heather Campbell “You only need to know the direction, not the destination. The direction is … Read more

The Journal: Links to Share

In today’s Journal * Quotes of the Day * Nothing to talk about * Of Interest * The Numbers Quotes of the Day “Some memories are realities, and are better than anything that can ever happen to one again.” Willa Cather, My Ántonia “Writers … brag about the years they worked on something or the number of drafts they’ve done. It’s as if they aren’t making art but operating a plastic pellet factory.” Lincoln Michael I have nothing to talk about really, only a thought on goals and a few links to share. We’re a third of the way through … Read more

The Journal: A Few Brief Notes

In today’s Journal * A Few Brief Notes * Of Interest * The Numbers A Few Brief Notes Pearl Harbor Day—For those of you who are interested, may you experience a thoughtful and reflective Pearl Harbor Day. To commemorate one of the worst days in this nation’s collective memory, I recommend this article: “Rare photos capture the attack on Pearl Harbor from the Japanese perspective, 75 years ago” at On Challenges—I also recommend reading the comments on Dean’s post from yesterday. You can find those at Then see “Getting Ready for a New Year Or Challenge: Tracking Time” … Read more

The Journal: More on Challenges and Writing

In today’s Journal * Topic: More on Challenges and Writing * Of Interest * The Numbers Topic: More on Challenges and Writing Ironically, one of the big problems with being a prolific writer is publishing. You can’t make money on what you write unless you (or someone) publishes it. That’s why Heinlein’s Rule 4 exists, and that’s the one I almost constantly fall off of. Not that I care, but more on that later. Maggie King mentioned in a comment that a prolific writer might have a problem finding enough proofreaders (or first readers) to keep up. She suspects that’s … Read more