The Journal: Negativity, Go Away!

In today’s Journal

* Quote of the Day
* Yesterday
* Topic: Negativity, Go Away!
* Today
* Of Interest
* The Numbers

Quote of the Day

“Why would I want to take a day off from doing something I love?” Dean Wesley Smith

Yesterday I realized I wasn’t quite up to “big day” status yet. I wrote some, but not enough to talk about and only as I was cycling through. I sidetracked myself with merging and updating my reverse outlines for the two novels into one.

When that was caught up, I also opened a new Word document and started merging parts of the novel I wrote in March with the one I’m writing now. Slow going back and forth, but it’s still fun.

I suspect when I’m finished I’ll have to read over the whole thing and add a transition here and there (to be clear, my characters will provide the transitions) so the alternating two parts fit snugly together.

I’m enoying the process (especially writing the new parts) but I also hope I never again have to write another one like this. (grin) The closest I’ve come before was writing the third prequel to my first-ever novel and having to merge the events at the end of that prequel with the “present day” beginning of what became Book 4 of the Wes Crowley saga. But that was easy compared to this.

I just keep reminding myself this is the genesis novel for a series (so it’s worth the extra effort), and that every succeeding book in the series will be new words and stories that will move forward through the overall story, flowing off of this one.

Then somewhere around 11:30, I realized I hadn’t watched and listened to the new Advanced Depth videos for this week yet (they came out on Tuesday). So I took an hour or so to do that.

Then I went up to the house for lunch, ate a little too much and got sleepy.

But the reverse outline is caught up and the overall novel is caught up and today is a new day.

Topic: Negativity, Go Away!

I’m gonna sound like a grouchy old man here, so skip this short topic if you want.

Today started badly. I might have to give up Facebook completely. Someone sent me a link to a “writer” who wrote, “I’m having all manner of trouble working while sheltering in place, (and good f***ing LUCK keeping ‘productive’ while in a quarantine)….”

Yeah. That figures. Head-shakingly stupid.

I wanted to say (but it would have been a waste of time and effort), “Writing ANYtime has nothing to do with luck.” It has to do with what Robert Heinlein wrote way back in 1947: If you want to be a writer,

1. You must write.
2. You must finish what you write.
3. You must not rewrite.
4. You must put your work on the market.
5. You must keep your work on the market.

It really is just that simple.

Then I followed one of that so-called “writer’s” posts to his or her blog, a Blogger site that’s titled “Writing About Writing (And Occasionally Some Writing).” That alone should have warned me away, but the tag line for the site reads, “Failing better and failing with style.” Not kidding.

And the first post there was “The 17 Rules of Writing.” Again, not kidding. And the very first “rule” was “Great writing involves great risk.”

Seriously? If you believe that, you’re already lost.

So I finally kicked out of the stirrups in that BS “writing is an elevated calling” bizarro world and got back to reality.

But out of curiosity, I did look up the “author” on Amazon. As I expected, there was Not One Book. Not one novel, not one short story. So why is this person handing out advice about writing?

Here’s the truth: All the stay-at-home, shelter-in-place stuff gives people like me (actual writers) the perfect excuse to be who we are. Apparently it’s also a perfect opportunity for would-be writers to call attention to their own personal dilemma and spread negative nonsense about what it takes to be a writer.

That’s fine. I just wish they’d keep it to themselves.

Today, I’ll write some on the novel. Because, you know, I’m a writer. I wish the same for all of you.

Talk with you again soon.

Of Interest (a very slow day)

See “One More Day Off” at (When I saw this, an earlier quote from Dean popped into my head: “Why would I want to take a day off from doing something I love?” Of course, he doesn’t “want” to take a day off from his novel. But he also has a business to run and other irons in the fire.)

See “Six Things Writers Need To Stop Worrying About” (repeat) at

By the way, if you read the Stephen King post in yesterday’s “Of Interest,” don’t take it as gospel. Remember that like most professional writers, he tells the public what they want to hear. In other accounts, he talks about writing one clean draft and “revising” as he goes (so cycling), where he freely admits there are only two kinds of writers: he calls them “putter-inners” and “taker-outers.” He also admits he is torn between the two in his own writing. Just sayin’.

The Numbers

Fiction words yesterday…………………… XXXX
Nonfiction words today…………… 800 (Journal)

Writing of For the Good of the Galaxy (novel)

Day 1…… 2645 words. Total words to date…… 2645
Day 2…… 2573 words. Total words to date…… 5218
Day 3…… 3604 words. Total words to date…… 8822
Day 4…… 2958 words. Total words to date…… 11780
Day 5…… 3241 words. Total words to date…… 15021

Total fiction words for the month……… 15021
Total fiction words for the year………… 223003
Total nonfiction words for the month… 9780
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 90930
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 313933

Calendar Year 2020 Novels to Date…………………… 3
Calendar Year 2020 Novellas to Date……………… X
Calendar Year 2020 Short Stories to Date… 12
Novels (since Oct 19, 2014)…………………………………… 48
Novellas (since Nov 1, 2015)………………………………… 8
Short stories (since Apr 15, 2014)………………… 208
Short story collections……………………………………………… 31


2 thoughts on “The Journal: Negativity, Go Away!”

  1. I checked out said writer’s blog. He has a couple hundred paying followers on Patreon. He’s being paid to be an internet personality and it’s probably a good fit. Much more fun for him than writing fiction, I guess. *shrug*

    • I know. I just get f[expletive deleted]g annoyed that someone who doesn’t have a clue sets himself up as a teacher. But it’s also the writers’ own fault. Normally rational, intelligent human beings who typically seek out experienced people for advice in other areas of life stick to their comfort zone when it comes to finding writing advice. They look for someone who will say what they want to hear. I mourn for them. The decline of a mind is a terrible thing.

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