The Journal: A New Nonfiction Book Is Coming

In today’s Journal

* Quotes of the Day
* Anyone can figure out
* Are you one
* Topic: A New Nonfiction Book Is Coming
* I had a good day writing
* The Numbers

Quotes of the Day

“One thing that apparently still has the power to infuriate people, though, is how many spaces should be used after a period at the end of an English sentence.” from an article sent to me by a friend via email

“I’ve gotten lots of advice in my novel writing career. Some of it good. Much of it stupid. It just took me a while to figure out which was which.” PJ Parrish

“I won’t say another word — not one. I know I talk too much, but I am really trying to overcome it, and although I say far too much, yet if you only knew how much I want to say and don’t, you’d give me some credit for it.” L.M. Montgomery (via The Passive Voice)

Anyone can figure out where the two-spaces-after-a-period typing-class rule came from. (Hint: first think of monospaced fonts, and second, think of people not wanting to change something with which they had become comfortable even when proportional fonts came into being.)

Anyone can also answer for themselves whether they want to continue inserting two spaces after a period in their own writing or whether they want to throw caution to the winds and brave the dangerous waters fraught with peril etc. of the one-spacers. Do what you want and don’t worry about it.

Are you one who has a problem coming up with ideas for stories? Do you write or want to write SF? Here’s a link to a story that all by itself, could generate any number of short stories or novels in series.

To begin any length story, you only need a character with a problem in a setting. Drop your character(s) into this setting. Maybe the characters are human in the far-off future. Or maybe the characters live there, have always lived there.

What is the intent of the musical tones? Welcoming, friendly, or antagonistic? What do the tones mean? Do they mean something different to people/creatures on each planet?

Have fun. See “Scientists spot 6 alien worlds orbiting a star in strange — but precise — harmony” at

Topic: A New Nonfiction Book Is Coming

Yesterday, I talked about reader mind-control as it is accomplished through describing the setting through the POV character’s five physical senses. As I wrote that topic, an idea was born.

I’m thinking about putting together a nonfiction book that will delve much deeper into the topic. Of necessity, I will talk a bit about Heinlein’s Rules (the beginning of all things writing) and about writing into the dark and cycling, the best possible way to put Heinlein’s Rules into effect.

I will include chapters focused on each of the POV character’s physical and emotional senses, how and why to use them, how and why to combine them, and which senses to omit at times and why that’s sometimes the wise thing to do. I’ll also talk about situations (settings) in which one or more senses might be enhanced even as others are blocked.

Finally, probably in a separate section, I will also discuss how and why to “focus down” into the setting and the incredible value of doing that.

If I remember right, I haven’t talked at all, ever, in the Journal about omitting or combining the physical senses, or about what might cause one or more to be enhanced or blocked, or focusing down. The book will be well worth the price for the section on focusing down To bealone.

Of course, every chapter of the book will also be replete with real examples both from my own stories and from the stories of other professional writers. Regardless of what genre(s) those other writers write, the examples will apply to all fiction in all genres. For example, if you believe in your heart of hearts you can’t learn anything about writing by reading Stephen King (because you don’t write horror), well, good luck with that.

To be certain I don’t omit somethng I should include, I’ll prepare an outline for this book. (Remember, it’s nonfiction. I would never prepare an outline for a novel or novel series.) Then if the outline is as good as I expect it to be, I’ll write the book.

But if I write the book, and there’s a 99% chance that I will, I won’t post those chapters live here on the Journal or over on my main website.

But I will make those chapters available in real time (as I write them) to all my donors at every level as a bonus on top of all the other rewards.

So if you’ve thought about jumping in but haven’t pulled the trigger on that thought yet, now would be a great time to do so. Visit and check out the rewards, in addition to what you read above.

For now, here’s a freebie: When I talk about focusing down, I’m not talking about general details—those should be addressed almost in passing with the five senses—I’m talking about tiny, minuscule details. Details that make the setting (or the characters) more “real” to everyday life, focus the reader’s attention, and pull him deeper into the story.

If you want to learn about focusing down in depth, and if you want to learn it sooner rather than later, consider becoming a patron.

I had a good day of writing yesterday. I expect another good day today.

Talk with you again soon.

Of Interest

See “What’s The Best And Worst Advice You Got About Writing?” at

See “90 Poetry Manuscript Publishers Who Do Not Charge Reading Fees” at

See “Class Action Suit…” at Be sure to see PG’s overly witty and informative response to the OP.

See “Understanding Third-Person Point of View…” at I have not read the OP. Just passing it along in case some of you are interested. However, I should note that I agree with PG. And secondly, that “deep POV” means describing the setting via the POV character’s five senses.

See “How to be an Imaginative Writer” at

The Numbers

The Journal…………………………………… 1030 words

Writing of The Journey Home: Part 6 (novel)

Day 1…… 1628 words. Total words to date…… 1628
Day 2…… 2011 words. Total words to date…… 3639
Day 3…… 4722 words. Total words to date…… 8361

Total fiction words for January……… 71464
Total fiction words for the year………… 71464
Total nonfiction words for December… 19960
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 19960
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 91424

Calendar Year 2021 Novels to Date…………………… 1
Calendar Year 2021 Novellas to Date……………… X
Calendar Year 2021 Short Stories to Date… 1
Novels (since Oct 19, 2014)…………………………………… 55
Novellas (since Nov 1, 2015)………………………………… 8
Short stories (since Apr 15, 2014)………………… 215
Short story collections……………………………………………… 31