The Journal, Monday, September 3

Hey Folks,

Happy Labor Day.

I wrote a whole long post yesterday, mostly whining about Heinlein’s Rule 4. Then I forgot to post it until about 5:30, and of course by then it was too late. Well, that’s why I call it an “almost daily” Journal.

I counted yesterday’s nonfiction words (530) in my writing, but I won’t make you suffer through it.

I consider myself an adherent to Heinlein’s Rules, yet lately I slip and fall when I approach Rule 4. In brief…

1, 2, and 3 — I write, I finish what I write, and I don’t rewrite. (The very idea of rewriting makes me tired and a little nauseated.)

4. Ah, here’s the problem. I don’t always publish what I write. At least not right away.

When I started all of this almost 4 very short years ago, I would finish a story and then dive headlong and happy into finding the right cover art, creating a cover, adding front and back matter, and publishing the thing.

Only then did I feel it was truly finished.

Nowadays, not so much.

As I write this, I still have three novels and around ten short stories (and an uncompiled collection) that are unpublished. No cover photos (so no covers), no front and back matter, no nothin’.

I was masochistically pleased to learn awhile back that Rule 4 is also Dean’s worst stumbling block. So in that way, I feel I’m in good company. But let’s face it: knowing the stuff resides in my computer is still a misery at best. Sigh.

Yesterday I intended to begn learning Affinity Publisher (beta). I didn’t.

I also intended to create covers for at least my two newest novels. I didn’t.

I did download some free and royalty-free potential cover art from Unsplash (, but that was it. (There are other free and royalty-free stock photo sites out there. If you’d like the URLs, email me.)

But all of that wonderful stuff aside, I still have to do the actual work as a publisher.

My wife was standing behind me as I verbalized all this stuff. She laughed, put her arms around my neck, kissed me on my bald spot and said, “And all you wanna do is write.” (grin) As usual, she is correct.

Maybe admitting my trouble with HR4 “live” here will self-shame me enough to reboot myself. I guess we’ll see.

No fiction writing yesterday, and maybe none today. Today, more than likely, I’ll begin cycling back through parts of one of my last two novels so it more adequately reflects some of the relationship changes that came about in the other one. (This is one problem with writing sequels.)

But as I was looking through potential cover photos on Unsplash, I came across (and downloaded) a few pics for which titles sprang to mind. So who knows? Maybe I’ll start a new story. (grin)

In The Passive Guy’s newsletter, I happened across an article titled “White Artists Need to Start Addressing White Supremacy In Their Work.”

Wow. I don’t even allow my own conscious mind to censor my work; why in the world would I allow anyone else to? Especially a white woman taking a podium (potentially from a person of color, who maybe has a better perspective) to rant about white supremacy?

“Whatta crocka crap,” one of my Brooklyn characters said.

I agree with TPG’s more civilized response: “[Maybe] white author[s] [sh]ould sit in a cave and eat gruel so as not to contribute to the many ills of white supremacy. Or authors of all types could simply write what they would like to write….”

Anyway, I hope you have a good Labor Day holiday no matter your physical or other differences from me.

From the Feel-Good Section of the Department of Something To Live Up To

After reading my last two novels, my first reader emailed me to say, “[Y]our situations and characters can trampoline a reader into something bigger than ‘just a story.’ Your stories are so real that the reader just accepts how it is, and they are so fascinated that the story can’t hold all of that energy and goes off.” (Thanks, ND.)

So I don’t forget again, I’m going to post this early. If I write any fiction today, I’ll talk about it tomorrow.

Of Interest

See “How to Write About Negative Leads” at Informative and instructional.

See “Now I’m Getting Nervous” at This is going to be interesting to watch.

Talk with you again soon.

Fiction Words: XXXX
Nonfiction Words: 760 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 760

Writing of

Day 1…… XXXX words. Total words to date…… XXXXX

Total fiction words for the month……… 0
Total fiction words for the year………… 314731
Total nonfiction words for the month… 1490
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 119306
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 433787

Calendar Year 2018 Novels to Date………………………… 7
Calenday Year 2018 Novellas to Date…………………… 2
Calendar Year 2018 Short Stories to Date……… 11
Novels (since Oct 19, 2014)………………………………………… 33
Novellas (since Nov 1, 2015)……………………………………… 6
Short stories (since Apr 15, 2014)………………………… 193