Just Do the Work

imageThe motto of this blog is: “Just Write”. I chose that motto because it has been my observation when it comes to writing that to Just Write is the foundation for any successful writer. Advice from numerous successful writers led me to that phrase and cuts to the chase, as it were, about what one needs to do to become a successful writer.

Along the same lines I recently stumbled upon a TED Talk by Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love, where she discusses the unseen force that gives writers and other artists the ability to reach the pinnacle of their chosen art. In a nutshell, she tells her listeners the job of a writer, or any other artist, is to Just Do the Work. By that she means a true professional will sit down at their word processor, typwriter, or legal pad each day and spend time doing the work required to write a short story, novel, or screenplay. In the course of doing the work a divine spirit, muse, or talent from within will take the writer to a state which produces works worthy of the writer. Continue reading Just Do the Work

A Slow Learner

imageAccording to an article I read recently I wasn’t born to be writer. The article was written by a teacher, more specifically a  college professor, who taught creative writing and literature to young minds seeking a master’s degree in the “fine arts”.

According to this learned individual my chances of success in becoming a writer is quite bleak since I didn’t aspire to become a writer at a young age; nor did I follow the hallowed path of college and a liberal arts education immediately after high school. In his humble opinion there is little to no chance of me, or my kind ever becoming “real” writers. Continue reading A Slow Learner

Let’s Write a Short Story!

imageI picked up a copy of Let’s Write a Short Story by Joe Bunting not long ago because I believe, as do the author and John Gardner, author of On Becoming a Novelist, writing short stories is a great way to break into writing novels.

I’ve just finished reading the introduction of Joe’s book where he challenges his readers to not just read the book, but to Write a Short Story. In fact, he asks his readers to write a blog with “Let’s Write a Short Story” as the heading; which is the genesis of this week’s blog. Continue reading Let’s Write a Short Story!

A New Year’s Challenge for Writers

Happy-New-Year-2014-HD-Theme1Happy New Year!—Well, it is a bit early but just the same, I thought I’d take a moment and just throw down a challenge to my readers this week. Since 2016 is just around the corner, I’d like to know what are your writing goals for the coming year?

Writers Challenge # 1: Do you have a book, novel, short story you plan to publish? Announce your work to the world. Stop by either here at the blog or on my Twitter account and let us know when it’s out so we can pass along the good news!

My book, Crossroad in Time will be published early this year. I’ll let you know when it comes out. Continue reading A New Year’s Challenge for Writers

The Christmas Box and The Martian

xmaspresentChances are if you’re a writer you’re familiar with the story behind the successful book The Christmas Box. Richard Paul Evans, the author is said to have authored his book for his children. Originally self-published, the book became a local hit in Utah.

Needless to say, major publishing house caught wind of the book and Evans eventually received several million dollars in publishing rights. What began as a way for one writer to entertain his children became a successful writing career with over 20 million books in print. Continue reading The Christmas Box and The Martian

Night, by Elie Wiesel—A Review

Auschwitz_entranceNight tells the story of a young Jewish boy, Eliezer Wiesel, who lives in a small town in Romania. Set in a Europe at war, the story begins with a warning, ignored.

An older Jewish man is deported from Elie’s town for being a foreigner in 1941.  Moishe the Beadle escapes and returns with warnings of mass killings and other Nazi atrocities. He pounds on doors and pleads with the Jews of his village to believe his stories, all to no avail.

“Who can believe such tales,” they ask, “What kind of men would do such things?”

Continue reading Night, by Elie Wiesel—A Review

7 Steps to Becoming a Daily Writer

writinghandIt’s the number one advice given to new writers. “If you want to be a writer, then write, and write every day.” Sound advice, and it makes sense, but…

As Jesus is said, “The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” New writers want to write, but getting around to writing each and every day is fraught with peril and pitfalls. A writer will start the day with a set goal, resolved to write a magic number of words, then…

If you’re a writer or aspiring writer chances are good you know what I mean. Life gets in the way. And although you have every intention of getting 500, 1000, or more words onto the word processor—it just doesn’t happen.

How can you become a writer
if you don’t write daily?

Newsflash: Ain’t gonna happen

Continue reading 7 Steps to Becoming a Daily Writer

The Winner’s Circle – NaNoWriMo 2015

auto_racing_trophy_a_big_gold_cup_with_winner_stamped_over_it_0515-1104-2101-4458_SMUToday marks the last day of National Novel Writer’s Month for 2015.

If you participated and completed your goal of writing a 50,000–word novel for National Novel Writer’s Month—congratulations, you’re a winner!

Why is being a NaNoWriMo winner important?

1. Winning NaNoWriMo gives you fodder for your bio. I remember reading another writer’s ‘about’ page and noticed, “Winner, National Novel Writer’s Month”. I have to admit, when I read that little tidbit I had no idea what that meant other than he’d won a national writing award. Needless to say, like any curious writer, I Googled NaNoWriMo and learned about the NaNoWriMo challenge.

The rest, as they say, is history. I decided to take the challenge; I wanted to be a winner. I wanted to show I was a WINNER on my bio! Continue reading The Winner’s Circle – NaNoWriMo 2015

NaNoWriMo Week Three

Sunday, 15 November 2015

Are Writer's Crazy?
                      Are Writer’s Crazy?

I just tweaked my blog and now I’m rolling up my sleeves for another week of writing! I made it to 31,000 words today.

I read on one of the NaNoWriMo.org forums that our writers in Paris are all accounted for. Thank God! Even as a writer I find it hard to put into words the outrage I feel about the killings in Paris. What madness drives one human being to such fanaticism to kill innocent people?

My thoughts and prayers go out to the Paris attack victims, their families, their friends and the survivors. Today, like many around the world, I am a Parisian.

Monday, 16 November 2015

Continue reading NaNoWriMo Week Three

Week Two of NaNoWriMo

Eating the Elephant
                   Eating the Elephant

Question: How do you eat and elephant?

Answer: One bite at a time!

It’s Week Two of National Novel Writer’s Month and my first NaNoWriMo novel. This is a daily update on my progress.

Week Two Day One NaNoWriMo:

It’s Sunday and today I made it to over 17,000 words on the novel. Also took a photo and posted my selfie on Twitter for NaNoWriMo selfie day.

A thought on word goals. I’ve been in the habit of writing a minimum of 500 words every day for about a year now. That’s a handy habit for NaNoWriMo. I’ve increased my daily requirement to 1800 words per day for NaNoWriMo to make the 50,000 word goal.

Despite working a forty-hour full time job I’m finding the bump to 1800 words has been fairly easy.

I’ve spent time with family and friends, finished a Brad Thor novel, written for NaNoWriMo and two blogs, and still reach my daily goal.

However, I don’t think if I’d have started out trying to write 1800 words a day reaching that goal would have been this easy. In fact, I can honestly say I KNOW it wouldn’t have worked. I tried the thousand word a day habit earlier in my writing career and it didn’t take. But a small bite, one day at a time did.

So if you’re struggling to make your daily word count, take smaller bites of the elephant and slowly, but surely, make the bites a bit bigger as you go along. Pretty soon that whole pachyderm will be nothing but bones on your plate. Continue reading Week Two of NaNoWriMo