NANOWRIMO Update and a humorous diversion

Day One of NANOWRIMO: So far, so good. I wrote 1735 words today in about 3 hours. I fiddled around with trying to format a Word document for almost an hour, so writing that many words in about two hours is Continue reading NANOWRIMO Update and a humorous diversion

Ready or Not, NaNoWriMo, Here I Come!

 I’m doing something way out of my comfort zone during the month of November and participating in National Novel Writing Month. It’s more or less a massive group marathon fiction writing event, where writers across the nation (maybe even the Continue reading Ready or Not, NaNoWriMo, Here I Come!

Need inspiration? Look to other masterful artists and craftspersons for creative stimulation.

All writers need to generate story ideas on a regular basis. I find the best times to do that are just sitting in a quiet spot with a notebook answering “what if” questions. But when I’m stumped for ideas using Continue reading Need inspiration? Look to other masterful artists and craftspersons for creative stimulation.

Would “The Hunt for Red October” be a bestseller today?

One of my projects as a writer learning all he can about the thriller/suspense genre is to read the early novels–first novels in particular, if I can find them–of today’s recognized best-selling authors. The authors I’ve read/am reading so far include Continue reading Would “The Hunt for Red October” be a bestseller today?

What does a county fair wine judging competition have to do with writing?

I had the pleasure of participating in my first official wine judging competition (my local county fair–one of the best in the nation and the biggest county fair in the great state of Minnesota!) where prizes (ribbons) were awarded. It Continue reading What does a county fair wine judging competition have to do with writing?

The Yule Log Saga

Decades ago, I used to be quite ambitious in the kitchen. One year for our annual family Christmas dinner I decided to go the whole nine yards and make a cake that looks like something you’d toss onto the campfire on a Continue reading The Yule Log Saga

Observations from the third annual Tucson Festival of Books

I was fortunate that a planned visit to my father and stepmother’s coincided with the dates of the Festival, March 12-13. Since Dad didn’t have any special plans due to having had cataract surgery a few days earlier (successful, I’m Continue reading Observations from the third annual Tucson Festival of Books

A small moral victory

I hit a milestone the other day: my first positive response to a query letter I sent out for my novel. An agent read the first chapter, which I enclosed with my query, and immediately requested the first 50 pages! Continue reading A small moral victory

And then there’s the synopsis…groan

Little did I know what I was getting into when I started writing my novel. All the stuff you have to do besides actually write: study the craft, get critiqued, critique others, read blogs, learn about the publishing business, agents, Continue reading And then there’s the synopsis…groan

There’s critiquing, and then there’s editing.

I thought I knew what editing was all about based on more than two years of belonging to critiquecircle.com, submitting almost 50 pieces of my work (mostly chapters) and giving well over 300 critiques of other writers’ submissions. I’m pretty Continue reading There’s critiquing, and then there’s editing.