The Journal: Kris Rusch, A New WIP, and Today

In today’s Journal

* Quote of the Day
* Topic: Kris Rusch’s Patreon Page
* Smashwords is patening new technology
* Today
* I’ve also had a few questions
* Of Interest
* The Numbers

Quote of the Day

Via my friend Bob Calverley, “Bad books on writing tell you to ‘WRITE WHAT YOU KNOW’, a solemn and totally false adage that is the reason there exist so many mediocre novels about English professors contemplating adultery.” Joe Haldeman, author of The Forever War and Vietnam vet

Topic: Kris Rusch’s Patreon Page

Because of the way the world is today, I’ll start with a disclaimer: This is not a paid ad and I receive no special benefit from the following, other than the good feeling I get from trying to guide you in the right direction.

That being said, if you’re interested in learning licensing (and if you aren’t, you should be) I urge you (again) to donate as little as $5 to Kris Rusch’s Patreon page.

She shared a post there today that I wish I could share with you, but it’s labeled “for patrons only.” I won’t violate her copyright.

The post is also labeled “Business Musings,” so it might come out later in her blog on her website, in which case I’ll share it then. But why take the chance?

For as little as $5 per month, you can get all patron-only content. Even if she shares it on her free blog later, you get it at least a week early, and much that she writes for patrons never makes it to her regular blog.

And as if that weren’t enough, you also get access to her Patreon archives, so you can read back at your leisure and catch up. The current count is 159 posts on Business Musings, 179 posts on Writing, and 161 posts on Publishing. It’s like taking a master’s course on business… for only $5 per month.

I pass along what I can when she posts articles that are free (as I do with posts from Dean, JA Konrath and others), but I urge you to spend the $5 per month on yourself and take advantage of Kris’ generous nature.

Smashwords is patenting new technology to allow for pre-sales (not the same as pre-orders) to readers selected by the creator of a given work.

This is exciting news, and it comes at just the right time for me personally.

Over the past couple of months I’ve thought about creating an author newsletter with the sole intent of building my reader base. With this new tool at my disposal, I think now is the time.

And I’ve just finished a new novel. I’d planned to distribute it immediately through the usual channels (Smashwords, D2D and Amazon) anyway, but with this added benefit, it makes more sense to

* upload it as a pre-order today for say two months down the road,
* upload the finished version as soon as my first readers are finished with it,
* and set up a pre-sale date that is maybe a month earlier than the official release date.
* I’ll also offer it at a discounted price for those who order the pre-sale version and sign on to my newsletter.

As I said, it’s exciting news. To read the announcement in full, see “Of Interest.”

Today I started a horror novel. Yeah, horror. Real, graphic, physical (but not gratuitous) horror with a double dose of psychological suspense tossed in for giggles.

As I mentioned here recently, I’ve been mulling over a few new ideas both in and out of already established fictional worlds. This one is wedged between those two. It’s an old idea, but one that is not lodged in any of my already-established worlds. Weird.

But both Stephen King and Ray Bradbury (two Stage-5 masters of the craft) advise writers to write what scares them, what makes them uneasy.

The WIP I started today fits the bill perfectly. It stems from a short story I published back in November 2016. I thought it would be a novel even back then. But at the time, frankly it was too disturbing to continue writing, so I wrapped it as a short story, published it, and felt fortunate to escape with my mind more or less intact. (grin)

I also wasn’t ready (skill-wise) to write it, though I didn’t really understand that at the time. Now I am.

So I brought forward the short story (see the numbers below), did a quick read-through (cycling) to let my narrator and characters play with it, and began writing. It was just as if I hadn’t let it sit for three years. (grin) I was even excited as I cycled through what I’d already written. (And I spent some time being slapped around by my characters over all the stuff I left out.)

Now I’ll hedge my bet. Whether this story runs to a novella or novel is anybody’s guess, but I’m settled with the notion it will run to one or the other. However, I’m not the same writer as I was three years ago. My original intent with the story has faded (thank goodness).

This will also be a stretch for me: new genre, a new world to build, and probably a one-off novel after I’ve been writing in series for so long. So I have no predispositions in writing this one, other than launching it off the short story, which now makes up chapters one and two of the novella/novel.

I do know it will be a twisted and wild ride with multiple characters who might or might not be “the bad guy.” But otherwise I know nothing (even the characters’ names). I’ll write it completely into the dark, as I wrote the short story.

But I’ll start in earnest tomorrow.

Today is a short day, much of it consumed with cycling through the story and other things I had to do. Beginning tomorrow, the real ride begins. (grin) Of course, I’ll detail-out the process in “Numbers” below. Follow along if you want.

I’ve also had a few questions regarding my shared worlds. Based on those, I plan to write another topic about that soon. So please, if you have any questions, ask them. I won’t identify you by name, but I’d love to have more input in the form of your questions. Thanks!

Talk with you again soon.

Of Interest

See “Introducing Smashwords Presales” at Very exciting news!

See “In a Hurry” at

See “I Hate Being Caught Being Wrong” at

See “Beware of Similes or Metaphors That Leave Readers Unaffected” at

See “The Ar’rothian Laws of Physics (Really)” at

See “The Passive Voice” at Many interesting entries.

The Numbers

Fiction words today…………………… 1047
Nonfiction words today…………… 1050 (Journal)

Writing of Ice Scream Novel (placeholder title)
Brought forward…… 4416 words

Day 1…… 1047 words. Total words to date…… 5463

Total fiction words for the month……… 2899
Total fiction words for the year………… 400464
Total nonfiction words for the month… 3710
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 306970
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 707434

Calendar Year 2019 Novels to Date…………………… 8
Calendar Year 2019 Novellas to Date……………… 1
Calendar Year 2019 Short Stories to Date… 4
Novels (since Oct 19, 2014)…………………………………… 43
Novellas (since Nov 1, 2015)………………………………… 8
Short stories (since Apr 15, 2014)………………… 197
Short story collections……………………………………………… 31