In today’s Journal
* Quotes of the Day
* Santa Fe Subseries
* Of Interest
Quotes of the Day
“There are scum and scuts in every folk and nation.” Robert E. Howard in a Conan novel
“Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not yet come. We have only today. Let us begin.” Mother Theresa
“The future starts today, not tomorrow.”—Pope John Paul II
“The future doesn’t belong to the fainthearted; it belongs to the brave.” Ronald Reagan
Wow, are some habits difficult to break. This morning I can only write until 11. Yet instead of starting on the novel again, I’m here typing on this silly Journal. (grin)
I’ve gotten used to pulling on my sweats, stepping into my fuzzy slippers, getting a cup of coffee, and padding out to the back fence to chat with my friends as I wake up.
My personal favorite coffee is either the Organic Sumatra or the Dark Sumatra Mandheling. Both are very rich (they remind me of chicory coffee) but also very low in acid. I get mine (K-Cups) from Fresh Roasted Coffee.
Santa Fe Subseries
It dawned on me as I watched football last night that there might be numerous books in this Santa Fe subseries (I’m writing book 2 now) of the Wes Crowley Gap series.
In the old days (say before 2015) that thought would have frightened me. Isn’t that ridiculous? I mean, what’s the worst that could happen?
Well, okay, I suppose one of the bad guys Wes is chasing could come back life and gun me down (or do a lot worse if it’s Four Crows), but that horror stuff is Chris Ridge’s domain, not mine. So again, what could happen?
Now when I have a thought like that it only excites me. And yet every day I hear writers say it’s difficult to come up with ideas.
I suspect those folks think an idea is a story born in whole cloth. It isn’t. A story is only a mental image or a bit of dialogue or a brief narrative thought or a cool phrase or word that drives you to sit down at a keyboard and start writing.
Once you put your fingers on the keys, just write whatever comes. Then write the next sentence and the next and the next. Don’t second-guess, don’t wonder what will happen next. Just open yourself up and be the Recorder (Stenographer, Whatever) for your characters as they live the story and you run through it with them.
If you’ve never tried this, it is an exhilirating experience. And the great news is, it’s still just as exhilirating 8 years, 70+ novels, and 220+ novellas and short stories later.
But do me a favor—if you’re too frightened to try WITD or if you just can’t bring yourself to try it or if you’re just absolutely certain all those beginning writers on the “boards” are right and people like King and Child and DW Smith and KK Rusch and Bradbury and Heinlein and me are wrong, keep it to yourself, would you?
Please restrain the urge to leave a comment on any of my websites. Instead, go leave your comment on one of the MILLIONS of websites that agree with you. ‘Cause you aren’t gonna convince me, and I’m not gonna help you spread the myths. Not on this website.
Now there’s a habit worth developing. And that’s really what I’m doing over here in the Stanbrough camp right now: trying to break one habit cold (tying a bow on the Journal every morning) while easing into another one (writing earlier).
Best of all, that “writing earlier” habit might well develop into a “writing more” habit. Yesterday I was through writing (had reached my goal) by 11:30 but later in the day, I was bored out of my mind. I’ve never developed the ability to just Do Nothing (except with a good cigar, but I can’t go there).
So maybe I’ll write early, and then come back later in the day to write more. Maybe as all of this develops I’ll even increase my daily word count goal. (Can you tell I’m excited? All these new possibilities!)
All right. I’m gonna go play with Wes for awhile now. He and Charley have boarded a train this morning in Santa Fe bound for Las Cruces and it’s just about to pull away from the platform. I’d better hurry.
If I can, I’ll add more to this later, from Las Cruces maybe, or maybe from Columbus or even Puerto Palomas across the line.
Wow. I almost didn’t post this at all. I almost forgot. I took my ‘puter up to the house in case I had the opportunity to write more, but I didn’t. Then I dealt with a few problems and then remembered I hadn’t posted yet. So here it is.
Oh, and just for the record, I didn’t “think” my way to a single word of it. If I tried to “think” about what I was going to write next, I wouldn’t have received from my characters the biggest surprise yet in any of the TWENTY Wes Crowley novels. In fact, I probably wouldn’t have finished more than a few novels, if that many.
Talk with you again soon.
See “75 New Year Quotes That Will Inspire a Fresh Start to the Year” at https://www.rd.com/list/new-years-quotes/.
See “Using Your Writing Superpower in 2023” at https://killzoneblog.com/2023/01/using-your-writing-superpower-in-2023.html.
The Journal…………………………………… 900 words
Writing of Santa Fe: A New Office (novel, WCG8, Santa Fe 3)
Day 1…… 2815 words. Total words to date…… 2815
Day 2…… 2034 words. Total words to date…… 4849
Day 3…… 2650 words. Total words to date…… 7499
Day 4…… 2209 words. Total words to date…… 9708
Day 5…… 4214 words. Total words to date…… 13922
Day 6…… 2299 words. Total words to date…… 16221
Total fiction words for December……… 69687
Total fiction words for 2022………… 284661
Total words for 2022 (fiction and this blog)…… 507591
Total fiction words for January……… 6513
Total fiction words for 2023………… 6513
Total nonfiction words for January… 900
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 900
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 7743
Calendar Year 2023 Novels to Date…………………… 0
Calendar Year 2023 Novellas to Date……………… 0
Calendar Year 2023 Short Stories to Date… 0
Novels (since Oct 19, 2014)…………………………………… 71
Novellas (since Nov 1, 2015)………………………………… 8
Short stories (since Apr 15, 2014)………………… 217
Short story collections……………………………………………… 31
Disclaimer: I am a prolific professional fiction writer. I convey the stories of my characters. Because It Makes Sense, I trust them to tell the story that they, not I, are living. This greatly increases my productivity and provides the fastest possible ascension along the learning curve of Craft because I get a great deal more practice at actually writing. It will do the same for you if only you trust it.