Writing in Public: Year 2, Month 7, Day 23


Year 2, Month 7, Day 23 of this Writing in Public challenge.

Day off of writing the novel CALLING DEAD: A Cold Poker Gang Novel.

Again today, I had no desire to take a day away from the writing, but alas, I spent my day working on other things that seemed to just take longer to do.

But I actually did go sit down there with the novel open, then got called away and that was that.

As far the day, a standard Monday. Off to run errands, order some lumber for a project up at WMG publishing, then to the WMG store (Pop Culture Collectables), then to the mail, then back to WMG.

Worked there for a time, talked with some friends, then headed home around 7 p.m. to do e-mail. (No lunch… no time, so I had a handful of chips instead.)

Nap with the white cat, dinner, a start into the Voice, and then dishes and in here to do the assignments in the online workshops around 9 p.m.

Got that done around 11 p.m. and went to reading. (I’ve been doing a ton of that lately, just not talking about it here.)

Downstairs around midnight to watch the rest of The Voice, then back up here to do more reading and then write this.

Topic of the Night: Explore your craft.

Pharrell, on The Voice tonight, said something to one artist who had not gotten through. No one turned. Pharrell basically told the kid to not just stay in an area he felt comfortable with (which is what the kid had done and it had not served him well), but Pharrell said to explore, open up his range, try areas in his art that he’s not comfortable with.

Spot on the money for writing in more ways than one.

I hear from so many writers say they just “can’t” write that without ever trying. And I hear from so many writers in the short story workshop where I force them to write out of their comfort zone and suddenly they like it and find it interesting.

As humans, as writers, we have this desire to stay safe. It’s as if writing a bad story will make animals come out of the night and eat us. Silly, of course, but for many writers that fear is very real.

And that fear cripples writers as artists. They write the same story over and over, even though they think it is different. But they never take any chances. And to be really “safe” the story is always rewritten to death out of fear. Thus the story sounds like just about everything else. And I meant “sounds” because I can spot a story a mile away that has been “polished” to death.

So trying new things with your writing is critical to growing as an artist. The poor kid went out there with a narrow range song that had been polished and the four superstars saw right through it. And didn’t turn.

And even though Pharrell tried to tell the kid what he did wrong, just as I am trying to tell some of you here, the fear will control. I doubt seriously if that kid heard Pharrell.

And not one of the stars asked him to come back. They could see it as well.

I just have never figured out what the hell writers are afraid of. We don’t have to stand in front of millions of people and fail. We just put a story out and if it fails, no one reads it. Shrug.

Watch The Voice if you want to see real courage for art.

And the wonderful moment on the show tonight was when Pharrell, at Christina’s urging, got up and sang with a young girl who hadn’t made it through, and clearly gave her not only a real moment to remember, but some motivation to come back. Wonderful moment of stars giving to young artists because they really care.

And wow, I thought the talent last year was stunning, but this year is even higher, more than likely from real music professionals with careers seeing how Boyd last year jumped the success on the show into a major career after being so broke, he was about to lose his house. Tonight there was one woman who had had a top five Billboard charted song with a partner and had toured with Blake. She was up there. Blake didn’t turn. The rest did.

Tomorrow promises to be even more fun. For two hours, it’s an amazingly good and free education.

——

Totals For Year 2, Month 7, Day 23

— Daily Fiction: 00 original words. Fiction month-to-date: 32,850 words  

— Nonfiction: 00 new words. Nonfiction month-to-date total: 3,800 words

— Blog Posts: 900 new words. Blog month-to-date word count: 14,500 words

— E-mail: 34 e-mails. Approx. 1,100 original words.  E-mails month-to date: 654 e-mails. Approx. 18,300 words

— Covers Designed and Finished: 0. Covers finished month-to-date: 1 Covers

For projects finished in the first year and links to the posts, click on the Writing in Public tab above.

For projects finished this month and where you can read them, click continue reading below.

You can support this ongoing blog at Patreon on a monthly basis. Not per post. Just click on the Patreon image. Extra stuff for different levels of support and I will be adding in more in March and getting it all caught up. And for those who have been along from the start, hold on, almost ready to get this all off the ground. Thanks for your support.

Or you can just toss a tip into the tip jar with a single donation at PayPal. Either way, your support keeps me going at these crazy posts.

And thanks.

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Writing in Public: Year 2, Month 7, Day 22


Year 2, Month 7, Day 22 of this Writing in Public challenge.

Day off of writing the novel CALLING DEAD: A Cold Poker Gang Novel.

I had no desire to take a day away from the writing, but alas, I spent my day working on my writing in another way.

After the writer’s lunch from 2 until 4 p.m., I stayed at the office, ate dinner at my desk, and worked straight through until midnight on Smith’s Monthly.

Eight straight hours with standing up for a couple minutes every hour.

So it was my stuff, just not new words.

After I got home around midnight, I watched some television, then got back in here around 1:30 a.m. to do the workshop homework. Got that done about 3:30 a.m. And then cleaned up some e-mail and did a few other details I had let go for the day.

I know this is February, and we all know it’s a short month, but I thought I would remind everyone that the March workshops start a week from today (Monday) and it’s a good list of workshops.

And there is room in all of them. Any questions, feel free to ask me.

And those of you in a February workshop and are worried about the cross-over week, don’t be. First assignments are always basic (except in Character Voice) and if you need extra time to fire up on the March workshop, no issue, I’ll work with you.

Topic of the Night: The Voice

Here we go again. The best major television show to learn the business and craft of writing that there is fires up tonight. I know a lot of you turn your noses up at these kind of shows, and honestly, for the most part, so do I.

But listening to those four major professionals talk with younger professionals about craft, business, presentation, and so much more often relates directly to writing. Watching the winner last year go through that contest was amazing. And learning his story makes any writer realize how lucky we have it in this business.

So I will talk about some of the cool stuff said at times here. But if you have a desire to ever make a living with your fiction, this is the television show to spend a few hours a week watching. It has that much value.

As I have said in many ways, writers don’t learn by going to some college, we learn by picking up something that works for us here and another bit there, and putting it all together.

And we learn by watching other artists in other fields.

Enjoy the lessons.

——

Totals For Year 2, Month 7, Day 22

— Daily Fiction: 00 original words. Fiction month-to-date: 32,850 words  

— Nonfiction: 00 new words. Nonfiction month-to-date total: 3,800 words

— Blog Posts: 500 new words. Blog month-to-date word count: 13,600 words

— E-mail: 31 e-mails. Approx. 1,200 original words.  E-mails month-to date: 620 e-mails. Approx. 17,200 words

— Covers Designed and Finished: 1. Covers finished month-to-date: 1 Covers

For projects finished in the first year and links to the posts, click on the Writing in Public tab above.

For projects finished this month and where you can read them, click continue reading below.

You can support this ongoing blog at Patreon on a monthly basis. Not per post. Just click on the Patreon image. Extra stuff for different levels of support and I will be adding in more in March and getting it all caught up. And for those who have been along from the start, hold on, almost ready to get this all off the ground. Thanks for your support.

Or you can just toss a tip into the tip jar with a single donation at PayPal. Either way, your support keeps me going at these crazy posts.

And thanks.

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Writing in Public: Year 2, Month 7, Day 21


Year 2, Month 7, Day 21 of this Writing in Public challenge.

Day Fifteen of writing the novel CALLING DEAD: A Cold Poker Gang Novel.

Short post tonight once again because I’ve got to be up early tomorrow for the writer’s lunch and I have promised myself to get good night’s sleep every night this week.

So the day was busy. E-mail, then a stop at the bookstore to talk collectables, then a stop at the snail mail, then to WMG offices to load up some stuff for the store.

Out to the store for a time and back to WMG Publishing finally at 5 p.m. I worked on some online workshop stuff, then headed home for a nap with the white cat at 7 p.m., dinner, news, and dishes.

Then back up to WMG offices by 8:30 and home around 10:30 p.m. Then off to do some reading after finishing up some more e-mail.

Now I have been reading a bunch lately, but I need to pick the pace up so I managed a couple of hours before heading to watch some television. Then another hour of reading and finally into this office to write around 1:30 a.m. I managed a quick session of about 1,100 words in 45 minutes, short break, then did another 700 words before I decided I was too tired to continue on.

This book will finish. Just not sure when and not sure how.

The free short story every week will start in early March. And all the Patreon people will get it numbers of days first each week in downloadable formats. Gaining on that.

So I got a ton done, had a good day talking books and reading, but only got 1,800 words of writing done. Ahh, well. Not really pushing.

———-

Total for novel CALLING DEAD: A Cold Poker Gang Novel

Day 1… 4,700 words… Total to date… 4,700 words
Day 2… 4,200 words… Total to date… 8,900 words
Day 3… 1,600 words… Total to date… 10,500 words
Day 4… 1,850 words… Total to date… 12,350 words
Day 5… 1,000 words… Total to date… 13,350 words
Day 6… 3,500 words… Total to date… 16,850 words
Day 7… 1,100 words… Total to date… 17,950 words
Day 8… 4,600 words… Total to date… 22,550 words
Day 9… 3,200 words… Total to date… 25,750 words
Day 10…3,100 words… Total to date… 28,850 words
Day 11…1,900 words… Total to date… 30,750 words
Day 12…4,200 words… Total to date… 34,950 words
Day 13…3,400 words… Total to date… 38,350 words
Day 14…2,300 words… Total to date… 40,650 words
Day 15…1,800 words… Total to date… 42,450 words
——

Totals For Year 2, Month 7, Day 21

— Daily Fiction: 1,800 original words. Fiction month-to-date: 32,850 words  

— Nonfiction: 00 new words. Nonfiction month-to-date total: 3,800 words

— Blog Posts: 500 new words. Blog month-to-date word count: 13,100 words

— E-mail: 23 e-mails. Approx. 500 original words.  E-mails month-to date: 589 e-mails. Approx. 16,000 words

— Covers Designed and Finished: 0. Covers finished month-to-date: 0 Covers

For projects finished in the first year and links to the posts, click on the Writing in Public tab above.

For projects finished this month and where you can read them, click continue reading below.

You can support this ongoing blog at Patreon on a monthly basis. Not per post. Just click on the Patreon image. Extra stuff for different levels of support and I will be adding in more in March and getting it all caught up. And for those who have been along from the start, hold on, almost ready to get this all off the ground. Thanks for your support.

Or you can just toss a tip into the tip jar with a single donation at PayPal. Either way, your support keeps me going at these crazy posts.

And thanks.

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Writing in Public: Year 2, Month 7, Day 20


Year 2, Month 7, Day 20 of this Writing in Public challenge.

Day Fourteen of writing the novel CALLING DEAD: A Cold Poker Gang Novel.

Short post tonight because not a lot happened. Rolled out around 1 p.m. and did a little e-mail, then off to the snail mail, then to WMG Publishing, then off to a store to find some tables, then south to Newport (about 40 minutes) to get supplies, then back to our store, then home.

Nap with the white cat, dinner, news, and dishes, then back up to WMG Publishing to work on some stuff there and Smith’s Monthly.

Home, watched some television, got to writing, did all the e-mail, watched more television, then did a couple of novel sessions.

I forgot to start my word count, but looking back at last night, I think I managed about 2,300 words total for the night. And watched far too much television.

Just resting some. It’s Friday night. Sometimes I even slow down. (grin)

Topic of the Night is the post about learning I put up last night.

———-

Total for novel CALLING DEAD: A Cold Poker Gang Novel

Day 1… 4,700 words… Total to date… 4,700 words
Day 2… 4,200 words… Total to date… 8,900 words
Day 3… 1,600 words… Total to date… 10,500 words
Day 4… 1,850 words… Total to date… 12,350 words
Day 5… 1,000 words… Total to date… 13,350 words
Day 6… 3,500 words… Total to date… 16,850 words
Day 7… 1,100 words… Total to date… 17,950 words
Day 8… 4,600 words… Total to date… 22,550 words
Day 9… 3,200 words… Total to date… 25,750 words
Day 10…3,100 words… Total to date… 28,850 words
Day 11…1,900 words… Total to date… 30,750 words
Day 12…4,200 words… Total to date… 34,950 words
Day 13…3,400 words… Total to date… 38,350 words
Day 14…2,300 words… Total to date… 40,650 words
——

Totals For Year 2, Month 7, Day 20

— Daily Fiction: 2,300 original words. Fiction month-to-date: 31,050 words  

— Nonfiction: 00 new words. Nonfiction month-to-date total: 3,800 words

— Blog Posts: 400 new words. Blog month-to-date word count: 12,600 words

— E-mail: 14 e-mails. Approx. 300 original words.  E-mails month-to date: 566 e-mails. Approx. 15,500 words

— Covers Designed and Finished: 0. Covers finished month-to-date: 0 Covers

For projects finished in the first year and links to the posts, click on the Writing in Public tab above.

For projects finished this month and where you can read them, click continue reading below.

You can support this ongoing blog at Patreon on a monthly basis. Not per post. Just click on the Patreon image. Extra stuff for different levels of support and I will be adding in more in March and getting it all caught up. And for those who have been along from the start, hold on, almost ready to get this all off the ground. Thanks for your support.

Or you can just toss a tip into the tip jar with a single donation at PayPal. Either way, your support keeps me going at these crazy posts.

And thanks.

Oo4th_patreon_name


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The New World of Publishing: The Learning Must Continue

Strange world we live in these days. I have run across a number of writers lately that think they have this all down, that they know what they are doing, and they are happy with their sales.

And some of them should be, I grant that. But thinking they know what they are doing just sort of makes me laugh.

The one thing that is an absolute in publishing and the art of storytelling is that the learning never stops. It’s not even a rule. It’s just a fact.

So for a post here, I thought I would tell a story about myself and my golf days that will illustrate this point completely. Take what you want out of the story. It’s all true, every word of it. Sadly for me, and yet luckily for me.

One fine day way back in 1972, a young man (me) drove up to a golf course just outside of Palm Springs, California. I was driving a 914 Porsche and I was dressed like a golf professional of the time, even though I had not yet turned professional. (I had no money, was homeless, and was sleeping in that car, but that’s another story.)

I was looking for a golf professional’s job at a course so I could turn professional and then make a run at the different tours. Yes, I thought I was that good.

The wonderful head professional at that course saw something in me and hired me as his assistant professional.  I didn’t know until later this man had been a major national player in his time, before World War II. (I was a little rusty at that point on the history of golf, but soon got that fixed, thanks to his help.)

So this wonderful man (who died three years later, and I will not give his name so please don’t ask) sort of laughed at a number of things I said about my game as we got to know each other.

I was practicing fairly hard and taking it around our club a few under each time and thinking that was pretty good.

Now, to be honest, I thought I was one of the best and I was going to take golf by storm. I was twenty-two. So what did I know? But it also seemed I had an attitude that seemed to say to my boss that I didn’t think I had much left to learn.

(I must have been a real ass with an attitude those first months.)

But my boss still saw something in me and one fine day a guy showed up at the course. I’ll just call him Jack. He was an old friend of my boss.

Now understand, my boss was in his late sixties at this point and half blind and didn’t play anymore. This friend was also that old, and very short, and kind of walked with a limp.

My boss wanted me to play a round with this guy. Knowing I didn’t have a lot of money, my boss said he would cover my losses. The guy (in 1972) liked to play for a hundred front, hundred back, and hundred for the eighteen.

Now I remember being slightly insulted by my boss’s offer. I planned on mopping up the fairways with this short old guy. (Yeah, I thought I knew it all. I was convinced no old guy could beat me. Convinced.)

So the old guy gets up on the first tee, hits a big slice out over some houses along the first fairway. His ball curves and ends up coming back and landing in the middle of the fairway about two hundred yards away.

My first drive was still climbing when it went past his ball. I knew, just knew, I was going to make some money that afternoon.

We were also playing with two members of the club who seemed to be smiling at the young assistant professional’s attitude. They knew who they were playing with. And I think my boss had warned them to keep their mouths shut and see if I could learn something.

So after eight holes, I was two under par and two holes down. (We were playing match play, which means each hole was either won, lost, or tied.) I had not won a hole and lost two. This old guy with a big slice was kicking my ass.

But being cocky and not really understanding yet, what exactly was happening, I pressed him for the front nine, meaning we were playing the ninth hole for $100.00.

I lost it. I rimmed out a birdie putt to tie him.

At that point, as we grabbed something to drink from the clubhouse, I went in and asked my boss who I was playing with and what had just happened. I was two under par and two hundred dollars down.

My boss laughed and made me promise to not press a bet again and sent me back out for the back nine.

I ended up five under par for eighteen, a very nice 67 thank-you-very-much, and this guy just ate my lunch.

With a bad slice and a drive that didn’t seem to go anywhere, he fired a course record 60 (12 under par) and I paid him $400, every penny I had managed to get together after being flat broke two months earlier. (I was too proud to let my boss pay.)

So after the guy was gone, my money in his pocket and his clubs in the back of his big Caddy, I went to my boss.

The first words out of my mouth were, “I have a lot to learn, don’t I?”

He laughed and said that was the best $400 I would ever spend on lessons.

Turns out the old guy used to travel with Ben Hogan and they would hustle games at country clubs and take money from rich members who thought they might be able to beat a guy with a bad slice and a limp. My boss had been friends with him and Ben and asked him to stop by to teach a young assistant pro a few lessons in how much there really was to learn about the game of golf.

Two nights later, I was hitting golf balls in the headlights of my bosses Caddy while he sat in a lawn chair close enough to see me and make suggestions. If I was willing to learn, he was willing to teach me.

We did that all winter and into the spring. Fond memories of being able to spend time and work with one of the greats of the game of golf in his last years.

What had happened in that round was that my eyes had been opened and I could see how much there was to learn. And instead of being angry and letting my ego win, I suddenly got hungry to learn as much as I could as fast as I could.

Writing for me now has that hunger. I want to keep learning, to keep practicing, even late at night by the headlights of a car.

So when I hear some comment from some young writer that sounds like they know for sure that they have this business nailed, that they know all about writing, that they don’t need to take any silly class, or go to any silly writing seminar, I remember myself back when I was 22.

And I remember that round of golf that humbled me and showed me how little I really knew about golf. And about life.

My old boss was right. That $400 was the best money I ever spent for a lesson.

A life lesson.

———-

You can support this ongoing blog at Patreon on a monthly basis. Not per post. Just click on the Patreon image. Extra stuff for different levels of support and I will be adding in more this month.

Or you can just toss a tip into the tip jar with a single donation at PayPal. Either way, your support keeps me going at these crazy posts.

And thanks.

Oo4th_patreon_name


Tip Jar

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Writing in Public: Year 2, Month 7, Day 19


Year 2, Month 7, Day 19 of this Writing in Public challenge.

Day Thirteen of writing the novel CALLING DEAD: A Cold Poker Gang Novel.

Not a huge day on the novel, but I think finally, after a little walking around the house and whining to myself (Kris never listens anymore) about how the book had no ending, I went back and kept typing and I think I see a glimmering of the end.

Maybe.

If you haven’t read one of these Cold Poker Gang mystery novels, I can tell you this, they are very twisty.

So the day went pretty standard. Out and about around 2 p.m. to the mail, then to WMG Publishing where I loaded up some cabinets in my old van and headed for our store. Unloaded stuff there, talked about collecting for a time, and headed back.

Went out walking with some friends for a half hour to get some exercise, then back to work on Smith’s Monthly until 6 p.m. Then home to do e-mail, the standard nap with the white cat, dinner, news, and dishes. Then finished up the e-mail and got to the book around 10 p.m.

By 11:15 I had 1,100 words done and unlike last night it seemed to be grinding. So off to watch some television for an hour.

Then another 1,000 words by 1:30. Took a break and a short nap. Then back in here for another 1,300 words. Which was when I figured out where I think the book is going.

So I stopped and went to write part of the post about learning above this.

So 3,400 words on the novel. Just chugging along.

Topic of the Night: The New World of Publishing post above.

———-

Total for novel CALLING DEAD: A Cold Poker Gang Novel

Day 1… 4,700 words… Total to date… 4,700 words
Day 2… 4,200 words… Total to date… 8,900 words
Day 3… 1,600 words… Total to date… 10,500 words
Day 4… 1,850 words… Total to date… 12,350 words
Day 5… 1,000 words… Total to date… 13,350 words
Day 6… 3,500 words… Total to date… 16,850 words
Day 7… 1,100 words… Total to date… 17,950 words
Day 8… 4,600 words… Total to date… 22,550 words
Day 9… 3,200 words… Total to date… 25,750 words
Day 10…3,100 words… Total to date… 28,850 words
Day 11…1,900 words… Total to date… 30,750 words
Day 12…4,200 words… Total to date… 34,950 words
Day 13…3,400 words… Total to date… 38,350 words
——

Totals For Year 2, Month 7, Day 19

— Daily Fiction: 3,400 original words. Fiction month-to-date: 28,750 words  

— Nonfiction: 1,300 new words. Nonfiction month-to-date total: 3,800 words

— Blog Posts: 400 new words. Blog month-to-date word count: 12,200 words

— E-mail: 17 e-mails. Approx. 400 original words.  E-mails month-to date: 552 e-mails. Approx. 15,200 words

— Covers Designed and Finished: 0. Covers finished month-to-date: 0 Covers

For projects finished in the first year and links to the posts, click on the Writing in Public tab above.

For projects finished this month and where you can read them, click continue reading below.

You can support this ongoing blog at Patreon on a monthly basis. Not per post. Just click on the Patreon image. Extra stuff for different levels of support and I will be adding in more in March and getting it all caught up. And for those who have been along from the start, hold on, almost ready to get this all off the ground. Thanks for your support.

Or you can just toss a tip into the tip jar with a single donation at PayPal. Either way, your support keeps me going at these crazy posts.

And thanks.

Oo4th_patreon_name


Tip Jar

Continue reading

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Writing in Public: Year 2, Month 7, Day 18


Year 2, Month 7, Day 18 of this Writing in Public challenge.

Day Twelve of writing the novel CALLING DEAD: A Cold Poker Gang Novel.

I really planned on powering on the book today, and I did, sort of, but just didn’t get a huge amount of words done. I think I must have taken four naps. Every time I sat down to rest my eye, I fell asleep.

Guess I’m tired. And I slept nine hours last night as well. Go figure.

Anyhow, spent the afternoon working on Smith’s Monthly, then home at 6:30 p.m. to do some e-mail, then the standard nap with the white cat, news, dinner, and dishes.

Got in here around 9 p.m. and got the e-mail and a few other things done by 10 p.m.

Took a nap.

Back in here by 10:30 and by 11:45 I had done 1,700 words. That is light speed for me in that short of time.

Took another nap.

Woke up to go watch some television, back up here around 1 a.m., got another 1,200 words done by 2 a.m.

Took another nap.

Then back at it by 2:30 a.m. and managed another 1,300 words by 3:45 a.m.

Exhausted. Too damn many naps.

So calling it a night with 4,200 words.

As I have been saying, this is a very, very twisted book. And I still have no clue how to solve it, but I got people going in all directions and a ticking clock and I think I have a kitchen sink sitting somewhere.

I was going to talk about collaboration in the topic of the night, thanks to a great suggestion from a reader to do so, but I think I’ll wait until the brain returns some. Not an easy topic.

So time for a long, long nap this time.

———-

Total for novel CALLING DEAD: A Cold Poker Gang Novel

Day 1… 4,700 words… Total to date… 4,700 words
Day 2… 4,200 words… Total to date… 8,900 words
Day 3… 1,600 words… Total to date… 10,500 words
Day 4… 1,850 words… Total to date… 12,350 words
Day 5… 1,000 words… Total to date… 13,350 words
Day 6… 3,500 words… Total to date… 16,850 words
Day 7… 1,100 words… Total to date… 17,950 words
Day 8… 4,600 words… Total to date… 22,550 words
Day 9… 3,200 words… Total to date… 25,750 words
Day 10…3,100 words… Total to date… 28,850 words
Day 11…1,900 words… Total to date… 30,750 words
Day 12…4,200 words… Total to date… 34,950 words
——

Totals For Year 2, Month 7, Day 18

— Daily Fiction: 4,200 original words. Fiction month-to-date: 25,350 words  

— Nonfiction: 00 new words. Nonfiction month-to-date total: 2,500 words

— Blog Posts: 400 new words. Blog month-to-date word count: 11,800 words

— E-mail: 19 e-mails. Approx. 500 original words.  E-mails month-to date: 535 e-mails. Approx. 14,800 words

— Covers Designed and Finished: 0. Covers finished month-to-date: 0 Covers

For projects finished in the first year and links to the posts, click on the Writing in Public tab above.

For projects finished this month and where you can read them, click continue reading below.

You can support this ongoing blog at Patreon on a monthly basis. Not per post. Just click on the Patreon image. Extra stuff for different levels of support and I will be adding in more in March and getting it all caught up. And for those who have been along from the start, hold on, almost ready to get this all off the ground. Thanks for your support.

Or you can just toss a tip into the tip jar with a single donation at PayPal. Either way, your support keeps me going at these crazy posts.

And thanks.

Oo4th_patreon_name


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Writing in Public: Year 2, Month 7, Day 17


Year 2, Month 7, Day 17 of this Writing in Public challenge.

Day Eleven of writing the novel CALLING DEAD: A Cold Poker Gang Novel.

I really plan on powering on this novel in the next three days to get it finished. I’ll do detailed posts about the words because it might be interesting and a lot of words. We shall see.

Today I was up early and off to a meeting at WMG Publishing. This was one of those meetings that we were working on long-term plans and what to do. Sort of a final meeting to set the plans we started forming last summer.

So all good, just not one of those fun meetings.

At one point I had to run off to both banks (because of the stupid holiday yesterday.) And then, by the time I got done with everything, it was 6:30 p.m. and I had done almost nothing on Smith’s Monthly.

So off to the grocery store, then home for the standard nap, dinner, news, and dishes. Into this office around 9 p.m. and managed to get the e-mail all caught up, for the most part, by 10 p.m. and then I got the homework done by midnight.

I got to read some fun stories in the short story workshop. That workshop is turning out to be one of my favorites because I get to read stories four of the five weeks of homework. Not sure if some of the writers taking the workshop are enjoying it, because I am reading as an editor and giving honest feedback. (grin)

If I like it, I say that. If the story doesn’t hold me, I tell the writer why not and what was wrong. Fun for me. I hope learning for the writer.

And I have a ton of stories left to read for the coast anthology workshop. And as soon as I get this novel done, I’ve got two short stories to finish before the anthology workshop starts. The fun of deadlines. (grin)

So I watched some television, got back in here around 2 a.m. finally to write. Managed 1,100 words before I needed to take a break at 3 a.m. and then only 800 words in the next session before my brain said, “Enough.”

Besides, I hit a place where I was stuck. I’ll sleep on it and power through it tomorrow.

So 1,900 new words tonight. Better than nothing by a ways.

Topic of the Night: Long Term

I have noticed many times that talking long term to new indie writers is like calling them nasty names. It makes them very, very angry.

But to me, in publishing, long term is the only way I have been trained to think and the only way that publishing works, actually.

What is long term? Thinking five or ten years out, at least.

What is short term? Something needs to be changed “Now!” You know, all the stuff a lot of indie writers do by having a bad month and changing prices, or giving up after only writing four or five books and having no sales. That’s short term.

Indie writers seem to function on a different perspective, and to be honest, after all the years in traditional publishing, I like this different perspective in some cases and worry about it in others.

Indie: Say I finish CALLING DEAD this weekend. It will be copyedited, and I’ll have it out in Smith’s Monthly in less than two months and stand-alone a month or so after that.

Granted, on many of our books at WMG Publishing, we are going after reviews, so that time span spreads out to six months or so.

Traditional: I finish CALLING DEAD this weekend. I send it next week off to four or five mystery lines. If I am lucky and the book is good and it fits what they are buying and the editor doesn’t hate me, I’ll sell it in the next year sometime.

After I get the contract and my lawyer gets done with the contract, another six months will have gone by.

Production, including a cash-flow required rewrite that I will have to do (I should explain that someday) another year will go past, at least, before the book hits the stands and stays there for a week or two. Maybe.

So over two years from finished manuscript through selling (at my level, forget the time an early professional with a bad agent will take) to production to publication.

Two years in traditional vs. two months to six months in indie.

No wonder indie writers are constantly in a hurry. To them, they have no sense of real time in publishing.

But here is where that lack of real time sense hurts indie writers.

— Indie writers think that poor sales means failure after four or five books.  Nope, just means you need to write more and better stories. You need to practice your craft more. Maybe take a pacing or a depth or a genre structure workshop.

— Indie writers hurt long-term sales with silly things like going exclusive instead of having their work out for the long term in every place, no matter how small the sales are.

— Indie writers try to boost sales quickly, as traditional publishers do, and if that doesn’t happen, lose sight of how a book can make great money over a five or ten year span if out everywhere.

I have seen indie writers call a book a failure and pull it or quit in less time than it would have taken a traditional publisher to publish the thing, let alone for the writer to sell the thing. The first meaningful royalty statement wouldn’t even come in for another year after that.

In traditional publishing, you don’t know if a book sells or not to expectations for three or more years after you write it.

Being able to follow sales numbers by the minute is a deadly thing in most cases for indie writers.

So I talk long term all the time. I have a lecture I focus on long term thinking called Writing as an Investment where you consider your writing an investment and figure return on investment (ROI) every year. Sort of like thinking of a book as a rental property sitting on a lot making so much money per year.

Or a savings account. Wouldn’t you love to get a 10% return on a savings account or CD year after year? Of course you would, but an indie writer without an sense of long term would consider a book getting only a 10% return per year a failure.

So this topic tonight is just me making another stab at this problem of short term thinking. I did this because Kris and I and Allyson have been making very long-term plans for WMG Publishing this last fall and winter and through today. And because of that, our company is very healthy and getting healthier by the month.

Put it this way. On one wall in the office, we have a publication schedule for 2016. And it is filling.

It’s called business planning.

———-

Total for novel CALLING DEAD: A Cold Poker Gang Novel

Day 1… 4,700 words… Total to date… 4,700 words
Day 2… 4,200 words… Total to date… 8,900 words
Day 3… 1,600 words… Total to date… 10,500 words
Day 4… 1,850 words… Total to date… 12,350 words
Day 5… 1,000 words… Total to date… 13,350 words
Day 6… 3,500 words… Total to date… 16,850 words
Day 7… 1,100 words… Total to date… 17,950 words
Day 8… 4,600 words… Total to date… 22,550 words
Day 9… 3,200 words… Total to date… 25,750 words
Day 10…3,100 words… Total to date… 28,850 words
Day 11…1,900 words… Total to date… 30,750 words
——

Totals For Year 2, Month 7, Day 17

— Daily Fiction: 1,900 original words. Fiction month-to-date: 21,150 words  

— Nonfiction: 00 new words. Nonfiction month-to-date total: 2,500 words

— Blog Posts: 1,300 new words. Blog month-to-date word count: 11,400 words

— E-mail: 35 e-mails. Approx. 1,200 original words.  E-mails month-to date: 516 e-mails. Approx. 14,300 words

— Covers Designed and Finished: 0. Covers finished month-to-date: 0 Covers

For projects finished in the first year and links to the posts, click on the Writing in Public tab above.

For projects finished this month and where you can read them, click continue reading below.

You can support this ongoing blog at Patreon on a monthly basis. Not per post. Just click on the Patreon image. Extra stuff for different levels of support and I will be adding in more in March and getting it all caught up. And for those who have been along from the start, hold on, almost ready to get this all off the ground. Thanks for your support.

Or you can just toss a tip into the tip jar with a single donation at PayPal. Either way, your support keeps me going at these crazy posts.

And thanks.

Oo4th_patreon_name


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Writing in Public: Year 2, Month 7, Day 16


Year 2, Month 7, Day 16 of this Writing in Public challenge.

Day Ten of writing the novel CALLING DEAD: A Cold Poker Gang Novel.

Up around 1p.m. and by 2 I was out running around. First up to WMG offices to make sure my deadlines were what I thought they were. They are, which means I have some writing to do this week. (grin) And a bunch of work up at WMG as well on formatting.

Then out to the WMG store (Pop Culture Collectables) to talk out there for a time, then back to the office for a few minutes, then off to walk with a friend and try to get some exercise.

Back to the office around 4:30 and worked there until almost 7 p.m. on Smith’s Monthly stuff, then home for the standard nap with the white cat, dinner, news, and dishes.

Got into this office here at home around 8:30 and managed to get all the workshop stuff done by 11:30 p.m. Then off to watch some television and back in here around 1:30 a.m. to finally get started writing.

I managed 1,100 words by 2:15 a.m., took a short break, managed another 1,000 words by 3:30 a.m. and then after another short break I got 1,000 more done before remembering I have to be up for meetings tomorrow.

So calling it a night now.

The book is one of the mystery novels I write and it’s twisting way out of control. I am just hoping as I write along and this thing keeps twisting stranger and stranger that my subconscious, through the characters, will have a solution. But I sure can’t see it, which I guess is good since my readers of the book at this point won’t see it either.

Scary, though, which I love.

Topic of the Night: No time tonight, but I can tell you that I have coming up some Sacred Cows posts on the myths of rough drafts, the myth of needing to take time between projects, the myth that one way of publishing is better than another, the myth that what is bad for traditional is good for indie, the really stupid myth that new writers should go traditional to learn, and some other fun ones.

Some of those I touched on lightly in topics of the night.

———-

Total for novel CALLING DEAD: A Cold Poker Gang Novel

Day 1… 4,700 words… Total to date… 4,700 words
Day 2… 4,200 words… Total to date… 8,900 words
Day 3… 1,600 words… Total to date… 10,500 words
Day 4… 1,850 words… Total to date… 12,350 words
Day 5… 1,000 words… Total to date… 13,350 words
Day 6… 3,500 words… Total to date… 16,850 words
Day 7… 1,100 words… Total to date… 17,950 words
Day 8… 4,600 words… Total to date… 22,550 words
Day 9… 3,200 words… Total to date… 25,750 words
Day 10…3,100 words… Total to date… 28,850 words
——

Totals For Year 2, Month 7, Day 16

— Daily Fiction: 3,100 original words. Fiction month-to-date: 19,250 words  

— Nonfiction: 00 new words. Nonfiction month-to-date total: 2,500 words

— Blog Posts: 500 new words. Blog month-to-date word count: 10,100 words

— E-mail: 26 e-mails. Approx. 1,100 original words.  E-mails month-to date: 481 e-mails. Approx. 13,100 words

— Covers Designed and Finished: 0. Covers finished month-to-date: 0 Covers

For projects finished in the first year and links to the posts, click on the Writing in Public tab above.

For projects finished this month and where you can read them, click continue reading below.

You can support this ongoing blog at Patreon on a monthly basis. Not per post. Just click on the Patreon image. Extra stuff for different levels of support and I will be adding in more in March and getting it all caught up. And for those who have been along from the start, hold on, almost ready to get this all off the ground. Thanks for your support.

Or you can just toss a tip into the tip jar with a single donation at PayPal. Either way, your support keeps me going at these crazy posts.

And thanks.

Oo4th_patreon_name


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Writing in Public: Year 2, Month 7, Day 15


Year 2, Month 7, Day 15 of this Writing in Public challenge.

Day Nine of writing the novel CALLING DEAD: A Cold Poker Gang Novel.

Up in time to hit the writer’s lunch at 2 p.m. Fun conversation.

Then back to WMG office at 4 p.m. to work on workshop stuff until 7 p.m.

March online workshops start in two weeks, gang. Still room in all of them.

Home to take a nap with the white cat, dinner, news, and dishes. Then in here around 8:30 to do workshop stuff.

Got that done around 11 p.m. and went to my writing computer for a session.

Got 1,100 words done before taking a short nap and then going to watch some television.

Back around 1:30 a.m. to write. Got another 1,000 words done by 2:30 a.m., took a short break, got another 1,100 words done by 3:30 a.m. and just ran out of gas.

Long day, long last few days. So not as much as I wanted done tonight on the novel, but I need to get some sleep. So going to have to settle for 3,200 new words. Night.

Topic of the Night: Sacred Cow post below this.

———-

Total for novel CALLING DEAD: A Cold Poker Gang Novel

Day 1… 4,700 words… Total to date… 4,700 words
Day 2… 4,200 words… Total to date… 8,900 words
Day 3… 1,600 words… Total to date… 10,500 words
Day 4… 1,850 words… Total to date… 12,350 words
Day 5… 1,000 words… Total to date… 13,350 words
Day 6… 3,500 words… Total to date… 16,850 words
Day 7… 1,100 words… Total to date… 17,950 words
Day 8… 4,600 words… Total to date… 22,550 words
Day 9… 3,200 words… Total to date… 25,750 words
——

Totals For Year 2, Month 7, Day 14

— Daily Fiction: 3,200 original words. Fiction month-to-date: 16,150 words  

— Nonfiction: 00 new words. Nonfiction month-to-date total: 2,500 words

— Blog Posts: 300 new words. Blog month-to-date word count: 9,600 words

— E-mail: 33 e-mails. Approx. 900 original words.  E-mails month-to date: 455 e-mails. Approx. 12,000 words

— Covers Designed and Finished: 0. Covers finished month-to-date: 0 Covers

For projects finished in the first year and links to the posts, click on the Writing in Public tab above.

For projects finished this month and where you can read them, click continue reading below.

You can support this ongoing blog at Patreon on a monthly basis. Not per post. Just click on the Patreon image. Extra stuff for different levels of support and I will be adding in more in March and getting it all caught up. And for those who have been along from the start, hold on, almost ready to get this all off the ground. Thanks for your support.

Or you can just toss a tip into the tip jar with a single donation at PayPal. Either way, your support keeps me going at these crazy posts.

And thanks.

Oo4th_patreon_name


Tip Jar

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Posted in Challenge, On Writing, publishing, Writing in Public | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment