The Daily Journal, Monday, June 3

In today’s Journal

* Quotes of the Day
* Thanks
* A new goal
* Topic: On Sharing and Copyright
* Daily diary
* Of Interest
* The numbers

Quotes of the Day

“They say ‘write what you know,’ which frankly I just find a dull truism. I say, write what you write. Write what engages you. What you know will just shine through.” Sean Monaghan

“Writing is perhaps the greatest of human inventions, binding together people who never knew each other, citizens of distant epochs. Books break the shackles of time. A book is proof that humans are capable of working magic.” Carl Sagan

And I titled this next poem fragment, by Robert J. Sadler,

A Poem to Define Poetry or Fiction

“a written sculpture
that conveys its own vocabulary
into the outstretched arms
of someone else’s dictionary”

As always, thanks to those who commented over the past day or two. I appreciate you taking the time to visit the site and leave a comment or email me privately.

I will always show my appreciation with a reply to your comment or email.

I haven’t used a word-count goal for awhile, but for the foreseeable future, I’ve decided to set a personal word-count goal of 3000 publishable words of fiction per day.

(I state it that specifically as a way of notifying my subconscious mind to be ready to play for a long time each day this week. The subconscious is always listening.)

I’m doing this because it’s time to kick the novel into high gear, which is to say, it’s time to stop dragging my feet and let the characters keep running.

Thus far while writing this novel, on most days I’ve hit around a thousand words and then told my characters, “That’s enough for today.”

A few times (always on “short” days), the characters said, “Well, all right.” I had the distinct feeling they were taking pity on me that I couldn’t stay longer.

But every other time, they frowned, crossed their arms, and grumbled. “Whatever. Wimp.”

You haven’t lived until you’ve seen rough outlaws AND the grizzled hero of your story sitting on horseback, their arms crossed, glaring at you. They refused even to do me the honor of shooting me.

So from today until I finish this book, I’m going to reward their loyalty to me (and call their bluff) by letting them run as long as they like. Or until I just flat can’t keep up anymore. But most of them are old too, so I think they’ll understand if that happens.

Of course, I have three “short days” per week. But I know that in advance, so instead of adjusting the word-count goal for those days, I’ll adjust what time I get up, what time I get to work on the novel, etc. Like everyone else, I have 24 hours in a day. And I don’t have a “day job” so what I do with those hours is up to me. So it’s all within my control.

I probably won’t comment on this further. You’ll see the results for yourself in the word counts below.

Topic: On Sharing and Copyright

Even though I offer Journal content free of charge, it’s still copyrighted as my intellectual property (see the copyright notice at the very bottom of the Journal website).

I offer it free only for the personal use of my subscribers, whomever they choose to share it with, and other readers. But my offering it on the blog does not make it available for any commercial purposes.

I mention this for two reasons:

One, I suddenly understand why every now and then a reader will write to ask me whether it’s all right to share my blog post. I suspect they ask because they fear sharing my post without asking permission will constitute a copyright infringement.

My answer is always the same: Yes. Of course it’s all right. And sharing my posts or a link to my posts free of charge even without my permission is not copyright infringement.

If I didn’t want the content to be widely available to the public (widely shared), I would either put up a paywall or not post it in the first place. So yes, please share!

(Now, if you shared something, even free, that was behind a paywall and therefore obviously not intended for free public consumption, that would be a copyright infringement.)

Two, any commercial use of my posts without my permission IS copyright infringement.

I mention this because an acquaintance who lives in Russia mentioned (innocently) in an email that he’s “thinking about translating [the Critical Voice posts] to Russian.”

I don’t believe he had any untoward intentions. For one thing, he mentioned it to me up front. For another, he added “(or maybe writing the same stuff [myself]). But of course I should prove their effictive[ness] by my own texts.”

Still, that second part told me he has commercial intentions (he intends to sell the resulting book).

So after discussing another matter with him, I added

“Caution on translating anything I’ve written, though. You can translate it for your personal use of course, but not in writing for public dissemination and not for sale.

“Writing a translation would require a contract between the two of us. If you think the Critical Voice book (or any of my nonfiction books) would sell well in the Russian language, I’d be willing to talk with you about licensing Russian Translation Rights either for an up-front fee, a royalty split, or a combination of the two.”

Again, I don’t believe for a second my acquaintance had any intention of translating my work into Russian without my permission and then selling it in his own name. Still, it seemed appropriate to issue the caution.

As to whether he should be able to write a Russian translation and offer it free to the public, I believe not.

If he translated the book and offered it free, he would not directly benefit financially from the book, but the distribution would harm my own potential sales of a Russian translation.

So I believe that would also constitute a copyright infringement. (I’ll have to consult my copy of The Copyright Handbook to verify that belief.)

(If all of this sounds like Greek to you, I recommend you get your own copy of The Copyright Handbook and/or take Dean Wesley Smith’s classic online workshop on The Magic Bakery.)

Rolled out right at 3 a.m. To the Hovel where I checked email and came away with the topic above. I appreciated the email because it clarified a couple of things in my own mind (and offered up the topic).

To the house a little before 5 to let the babies out, then a brief search to find my kitten had escaped the yard (despite my admonishment to stay inside the fence).

Found her, carried her back to the yard (I don’t like her having to traverse the rough gravel driveway on those little pads), then out to feed the horses.

Who shied away from me despite my carrying a tub full of alfalfa and bermuda grass, I suppose because I smelled a little of my kitten. She terrifies them.

To the novel (sort of… to the reverse outline) at 6:30, after which I’ll take a long break. My 4000 word stint will begin around 8:30.

To the house at 6:45.

To the novel at 9. Wrote about 500 words, then sidetracked for awhile to cycle back and add some character descriptions (that weren’t important earlier), then update the reverse outline.

I’m not keeping up with recording the breaks and writing sessions very well, but at noon (with a LOT of cycling, a couple of breaks and updating of the reverse outline) I’d added only 1600 words to the WIP. A break now, and we’ll see what the rest of the day brings. Check the final numbers below.

Nope. Fell about a half-hour short today but I’m pooped. I failed to success. I’m well over 3,000 words farther along than I would have been without the goal. (grin) Plus my cycling and reverse outline are up to date.

Talk with you again tomorrow.

Of Interest

See “Did You Forget to Mention You’re a Writer?” at Excellent post, and fun.

See Sean Monaghan’s “You are always doing research” at This fits in wonderfully with the next item.

See “Are You Offending Readers With Your Books? Probably” at Ooh! Ooh! And see the comments afterward. (grin)

See “16 Themed Calls for Submissions for June 2019” at

Via Linda Mae Adams, see Sue Weems’ “How to Hone Your Writer’s Eye by Simply Paying Attention” at Some good stuff there.

You might want to check out The Write Practice at As always, take what works for you and leave the rest. I’ll be checking their blog from time to time also and sharing here what I find that I believe is valid.

See “Relaxing Before the Expo” at Some great pics and a lesson or two from Lady Gaga.

See “Free Fiction Monday: Hollywood Ending” at

Fiction Words: 3328
Nonfiction Words: 1510 (Journal)
Total words for the day: 4838

Writing of In the Cantina at Noon (novel)

Day 20… 1890 words. Total words to date…… 36451
Day 21… 2961 words. Total words to date…… 39412
Day 22… 1192 words. Total words to date…… 40604
Day 23… 1718 words. Total words to date…… 42322
Day 24… 2313 words. Total words to date…… 44635
Day 25… 1017 words. Total words to date…… 45652
Day 26… 3328 words. Total words to date…… 48980

Total fiction words for the month……… 4345
Total fiction words for the year………… 310450
Total nonfiction words for the month… 5580
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 161140
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 471590

Calendar Year 2019 Novels to Date…………………… 6
Calendar Year 2019 Novellas to Date……………… X
Calendar Year 2019 Short Stories to Date… 1
Novels (since Oct 19, 2014)…………………………………… 43
Novellas (since Nov 1, 2015)………………………………… 7
Short stories (since Apr 15, 2014)………………… 194
Short story collections……………………………………………… 31