New Challenge Starting

I talked about a new challenge back at the first of the year, but realized after I had started it that my timing was off. So now the timing is right and I am starting up The Year of Short Fiction. See below for details.


The Day

Writers meeting up behind the new store, then worked on workshop stuff and writing stuff in my office at WMG until 7 p.m., then off to the grocery store, then home to cook dinner.

Did the workshop assignments, then went out and kept reading the book I have been reading lately. It’s got me hooked. (grin) Only reason I mention it is that I read longer than normal.

Got in here around 1 a.m. and worked on the writing side setting up my writing stuff for this new challenge, then came back here and did the announcement for the two new workshops starting in August.

No plan to write tonight, but it’s still early so I may do a nonfiction piece I have to do.


New Workshops Announced

In August, Writing Mystery and Reader Expectations workshops will start. Post above this with details if you missed it.

Taking sign-ups now. Got a hunch both of them might fill.


July Workshop Schedule

All July workshops have room. All are limited to five writers max. And they all start up a week from Tuesday and Wednesday. Just over a week away.

All details at

Class #1… July 5th … Author Voice
Class #2… July 5th … How to Write Thrillers
Class #3… July 5th … Adding Suspense to Your Writing
Class #4… July 5th … Plotting With Depth
Class #5… July 5th … Character Development
Class #6… July 6th … Depth in Writing
Class #7… July 6th … Advanced Character and Dialog
Class #8… July 6th … Cliffhangers
Class #9… July 6th … Pacing Your Novel
Class #10… July 6th … Teams in Fiction

Classic Workshops and Lectures are also available at any time.


Topic of the Night: New Challenge

I’m going to put here an altered version of the post from last January. A bunch of stuff very different. But the challenge I started and then postponed to now is not forgotten. Here it is in new form.


I had so much fun writing those 32 stories in July (Stories from July now out in electronic and paper), I started instantly looking around for a way to do it again. Drove my friends nuts as I tried to work out a way to not make the idea of writing a lot of short stories every month something that made sense.

So finally, working with Allyson at WMG Publishing, and talking with Kris, I came up with the idea of THE YEAR OF SHORT FICTION: A Twelve Volume Series.

Here is the challenge in overall summary, then I will break it down to how it will work.

I want to write about 200 new and original short stories starting from July 1st and going to the last day of June 2017. Not flash fiction, but regular short stories of varied lengths. And I hope to write them in all my various series as well and come up with new series as well.

I will do what I did last July. I will start from a title and on the blog I’ll explain where the title came from and how the writing went.

The short term goal is to do at least 32 short stories in July to match what I did last year. That will get me off to a great start.

If you do math, you know I need to write about 17 stories per month to hit 200 stories in a year. Some months I will do more, others not so many. Nature of life and writing.

But 200 original short stories is more stories than most writers write in entire careers. So this should be interesting to watch over the year, to say the least.

I will also hope to write a dozen novels over the year while doing this and a few more nonfiction books.

Yes, I have done the math. If I manage to write 200 stories at an average of 4,000 words each, that’s 800,000 words. And twelve novels will add in another 600,000 words of original fiction. Not counting non-fiction and blogs and all that.

So that’s an elephant. How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.

So here are my bites.

I will continue to get out Smith’s Monthly every month to subscribers and Patreon supporters. That will be my major focus.

I will write on a short story every night that I can. I will just focus on the night and the story and not look much at the overall picture as I go. I will just enjoy the process of writing a short story.

And I will report here about every short story, as well as the writing of the novels.

As the fall goes, I will start putting the stories into 15 story collections, one labeled per month, starting in the month of January, 2017.

The January pub date will allow me to be ahead on the challenge and for WMG to offer subscriptions and other things on the twelve volume series. By then it will be clear I can make it through the twelve volumes as well. (grin)

Also, the reason I will write extra stories is that I hope to send some of them off to major magazines along the way and put some in Fiction River. And, of course, I will need stories for Smith’s Monthly at some point.  I will report on those as well.

So that’s my new year coming up, starting from July 1st as I renew the challenge of writing 32 short stories in July.

If nothing else, it should be entertaining to watch me struggle with some of this.

Thanks for all the support. Onward.


Totals For Year 3, Month 11, Day 26

Writing in Public blog streak… Day 1,012

— Daily Fiction: 00 original words. Fiction month-to-date: 66,600 words  

— Nonfiction: 00 new words. Nonfiction month-to-date total: 900 words 

— Blog Posts: 1,900 new words. Blog month-to-date word count: 17,300 words

— E-mail: 21 e-mails. Approx. 900 original words.  E-mails month-to date: 410 e-mails. Approx. 26,400 words

— Covers Designed and Finished: 0. Covers finished month-to-date: 2 Covers


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