The Journal: How to Get Here, Part 2

In today’s Journal * Quotes of the Day * Topic: How to Get Here, Part 2 * Of Interest Quotes of the Day “You have to believe in your long term plan, but you need short term goals to motivate and inspire you.” Roger Federer, professional tennis player (paraphrased) “Did you know that 94% of consumers in their 20s purchased boba (bubble tea) in the last three months?” 1440 Daily Digest Maybe a story starter? Soma, anyone? Topic: How to Get Here, Part 2 If you have chosen to opt-out of the responsibility-and-labor-and-drama-intensive myths and choose instead to trust yourself … Read more

The Journal: How to Get Here, Part 1

In today’s Journal * Quote of the Day * Topic: How to Get Here, Part 1 * Of Interest Quote of the Day “[T]he absolute best promotion for your books, proven through history and thousands of surveys and studies, is your next book.” Dean Wesley Smith Topic: How to Get Here, Part 1 If you want to be a professional fiction writer, there are two ways to go about it. To my mind, they are the hard way — following the myths and turning what should be fun into labor — and the easy, fun way: Writing Into the Dark, … Read more

The Journal: Why Most Fiction Writers … Part 2

In today’s Journal * Topic: Why Most Fiction Writers Will Never Get Here, Part 2 * Of Interest Topic: Why Most Fiction Writers Will Never Get Here, Part 2 If you missed part 1 of this post, you can find it here. Please understand, folks, how you write doesn’t affect my own practice or income at all. You’re perfectly within your rights to clump something together from your conscious, critical, thinking mind that conforms precisely to the outline you also methodically and meticulously constructed. You can strive to make it perfect, then revise and rewrite it multiple times to make … Read more

The Journal: Why Most Fiction Writers Will Never Get Here

In today’s Journal * Quotes of the Day * Topic: Why Most Fiction Writers Will Never Get Here * Of Interest Quotes of the Day “It’s easier to fool people than to convince them that they’ve been fooled.” Mark Twain “But they are amazingly hard to follow—which is why there are so few professional writers and so many aspirants, and which is why I’m not afraid to give away the racket!” Robert A. Heinlein on his “Business Habits” “What [Heinlein’s Rules] did for me was to finally get me out of the stupid teaching from school and allow me to … Read more

The Journal: My Own (Past) Mentor and More

In today’s Journal * Quote of the Day * Topic: My Own (Past) Mentor * And More * Of Interest Quote of the Day “[T]he whole thrust of academia is one that values education, in my opinion, in inverse ratio to its usefulness—and what you write in inverse relationship to its understandability.Academics are forced to write in language no one can understand so that they get tenure. They have to say ‘discourse’, not ‘talk’. Knowledge that is not accessible is not helpful.” Gloria Steinem Topic: My Own (Past) Mentor This brief post is a result of me having read “Overcoming … Read more

The Journal: Openings and Nicknames

In today’s Journal * Quotes of the Day * Topic: Openings * Nicknames * Of Interest Quotes of the Day “When the uncreative tell the creative what to do, it stops being art.” Tony Bennett “Writing a compelling opening for your novel isn’t optional, it’s essential.” Maggie Smith of Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers “Authors today need a publisher as much as they need a tapeworm in their guts.” Rayne Hall “If Big Publishing priced ebooks for optimum sales and profits, there wouldn’t be any ‘decline’ in ebook sales to write clickbait stores about.” The Passive Guy Topic: Openings I just … Read more

The Journal: Mentorships Now Available

In today’s Journal * Quote of the Day * Food for Thought * Mentorships Now Available * The Novel * A Few Words on Genre * Of Interest Quote of the Day “It is better to fail in originality than to succeed in imitation.” Herman Melville Food for Thought So I don’t forget, here’s a free copy of brand-new handout: Craft and Non-Craft Topics to Stir Thought. When you click the link, a blank screen will open and the document will download automatically. Mentorships Now Available Because it’s difficult for me to let go of a concept once I sink … Read more

The Journal: Synopses and Writer’s Block

In today’s Journal * Quotes of the Day * Topic: Synopses * Topic: Writer’s Block * Yesterday * Today, etc. * Of Interest Quotes of the Day On writing synopses “I hate even the idea of a synopsis. When stories are really working, when you’re providing subtextual exploration and things that are deeply layered, you’re obligated to not say things out loud.” Shane Carruth “A synopsis is a cold thing. You do it with the front of your mind. If you’re going to stay with it, you never get quite the same magic as when you’re going all out.” J. … Read more

The Journal: Thoughts on Writing Sex Scenes

In today’s Journal * Thoughts on Writing Sex Scenes * Of Interest Thoughts on Writing Sex Scenes In today’s Kill Zone blog (see “Of Interest”), PJ Parrish (actually two authors) presented a post on writing sex scenes. But don’t get too excited. The article isn’t so much a how-to as an ought-to. I linked to the post because it was well written, witty and entertaining. That said, I disagree with the seeming basic premise of the post, that writing explicit sex scenes is necessary to a good story, at least anywhere other than in erotic or other genres where that … Read more

The Journal: We’re Back

In today’s Journal * Quotes of the Day * We’re Back * About the Archives * Of Interest Quotes of the Day “It’s very important in life to know when to shut up.” Alex Trebek “Values are not trendy items that are casually traded in.” Ellen Goodman We’re Back As has seemingly become my routine recently, I’m posting this primarily to get the items linked in “Of Interest” out to you. Nothing earth-shaking there, but some good stuff. I’m also posting this edition to announce that the Journal is back home again. And by the way, my sincere thanks to … Read more