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Novel Writing 103 –

Posted by on Jul 11, 2017 in Blog, writing | 0 comments

Novel Writing 103 –

Now that I’ve chatted with a few of the Viable Paradise students and alumni, I’ve begun settling into the fact that I’m going in October. It’s an eclectic group of folks of all ages, from young enough to still be living with parents, to retirees. I fall on the older side of the spectrum, without being the oldest, so hey… at least I got that going for me. What I need to do now is check out some of their websites, read some of their works, get to know them a little better. I also need to read some of the novels of the instructors whom I haven’t read before. I know I’ve read plenty of Elizabeth Bear, but most of the rest I know...

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Paradise Found

Posted by on Jul 7, 2017 in Blog, writing | 2 comments

Paradise Found

There are many great things about being a writer. Inventing whole new worlds out of my imagination. Doing something that brings me massive amounts of pleasure. Learning how to hone and perfect my skills. Sharing thoughts with other writers. Going to writers conferences and events. And having the opportunity to go to writer’s retreats and work with published authors to perfect my craft. In support of that last one, there are several major events I’ve wanted to attend for the last couple of years. Clarion and Clarion West are the two biggest writer’s retreats for speculative fiction authors out there. Numerous great writers have come out of those events,...

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Trimming the Fat

Posted by on Jul 2, 2017 in Blog, writing | 0 comments

Trimming the Fat

I should really exercise and eat better. That’s a given. And someday soon I’m sure I will, hopefully before my arteries congeal and the sort of stupidity inducing aneurysm that seems to be inflicting our current resident of the White House happens to me. (I mean seriously, this man is mentally messed up, what’s WRONG with this fellow? But I digress…) After attending my first writer’s conference and pitching to agents, it’s an event I’d highly recommend if you can afford it. I came away with three requests for more pages, though none wanted the ultimate “full manuscript” that I’d hoped for. I’ll run down...

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Poetry – Don’t F*** With Fairy

Posted by on Jun 20, 2017 in Blog, Short Stories, writing | 1 comment

Poetry – Don’t F*** With Fairy

A poem inspired by my wife’s first short story that she’s still working on… and no, this is nothing like her story, I say inspired BY, not an accurate reflection OF, you silly wankers… Warning: the following poem contains extremely harsh language. Well, not harsh by my standards, but hey, I’m not the soul arbiter of good manners, so your mileage may vary.         Don’t Fuck With Fairy I saw a pretty fairy boy, his wings were bright and hairy. I tried to show my mother but she said, “Don’t fuck with fairy.”   I went down to the river bank where pixies like to tarry. My father come up behind...

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GatewayCon

Posted by on Jun 19, 2017 in Blog, writing | 0 comments

GatewayCon

1600 miles in 4 days. 3 pitches in one morning. Lots of panels, authors, networking opportunities, and endless talk about writing. All of those are part of my GatewayCon experience. I couldn’t have asked for a better first writer’s conference to attend, it was wonderful. So here are my overall thoughts about the experience –   Pitching: folks, please… prep for this. Practice ahead of time. I wrote a query blurb that I honed and had critiqued and felt was solid. So I used that as my basis for the verbal pitch, practiced reciting it, tweaking it, until I could do it cold in two minutes flat. That would leave three minutes to ask questions and...

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Novel Writing 102 – The Firth of Forth

Posted by on Jun 8, 2017 in Blog, writing | 0 comments

Novel Writing 102 – The Firth of Forth

I have been very remiss in my blogging. That’s primarily because: A) I’ve had precious little I felt worth sharing; B) I’ve been spending considerable amounts of my free time working on the new novel; and C) I’ve gone through a rather difficult period of self-doubt and disappointment. Dealing with C first: all writers go through this. All writers hit a point, and multiple times, where they say “why the hell am I doing all this?” It goes with the territory. Especially when you remain unpublished. The longer you go without an agent and/or a publishing deal, the more often you’ll cycle through these types of moments. There’s...

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Novel Writing 101

Posted by on May 31, 2017 in Blog, writing | 1 comment

Novel Writing 101

I saw a recent post on Reddit that piqued my interest, so decided to undertake what the poster was requesting. Too late to do them any good, but hey, them’s the breaks. I’ve begun work in earnest on a new novel, so I’ve decided to document the process from start to finish. Less of a “here are some recommendations for you to consider,” and more of a “this is how I’m doing it.” Day 1: The Idea The idea came to me in a dream. Or not. What it was was a mash up of a couple of things. First, the idea of a story that involved a 1930’s pulp style world. Super heroes, weird gadgets, all that jazz. Then the idea of a universe...

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The Sneak Thief

Posted by on May 13, 2017 in Blog, Short Stories, writing | 8 comments

The Sneak Thief

One of the writers I follow on Twitter and whose books I’ve enjoyed, the always lucid and loquacious Chuck Wendig, is having a flash fiction challenge on his Terribleminds blog. Write a 1500 word story that is a mashup from two randomly generated genres, which include such gems as “Erotic” and “Medical Thriller”, which I am thankful to say I did NOT get, because… oh my fucking god, that would have been… well, interesting comes to mind. “Suction, nurse, we’re losing the patient!” Nurse Willow applied more lipstick and lowered herself again… So I went hunting for our D&D dice which, as it turned out,...

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Early

Posted by on May 10, 2017 in Blog, writing | 0 comments

Early

It’s as inevitable as my cup of coffee in the morning. At some point while talking with someone, the topic of what time we get to work comes up. Then what time we wake up. Then I tell them I get up at 3:30 and the eyes boggle, the mouth drops open, and they look at me with sheer, unbridled terror. I mean, I suspect that’s what it is. I’ve read about this look in books, so it must exist, therefore that must be what it is. Then I have to launch into why I get up that early. They might want to learn more about my writing, too. But usually the final question is “well what time do you go to sleep?” The answer of course is: early. I wake up early,...

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Feedback

Posted by on Apr 30, 2017 in Blog, writing | 0 comments

Feedback

There is a reality in the world of science and technology known as a feedback loop. This is that incredibly annoying screech from a microphone when someone first starts talking into it, before they turn their volume down. It’s painful, but it has a very simple cause and effect. You speak… your words flood out of the speaker… the sound of your voice, amplified by the speakers, reaches the microphone and is feed back into the system and out again, and again… and all we end up hearing is white noise, followed by banging and grunting as someone reaches for a knob and adjusts it, then the sheepish “sorry”. Of course if you’re a rock...

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