Category Archives: writing

Why have a blog?

Tis the season of review and reflection, hope and possibilities, giving and sharing, so here are a few things I’d like to say.

I’ve been taking some training lately, mainly about online marketing. In essence, it boils down to knowing what your core message is, getting that out to your audience by the best means possible (for them and you), and making emotional connections so people remember you and come back.

Now this applies no matter what you are doing. Not everything out there is about sales (though it may seem like it), it’s about reach and connections.

Which is why I started this site.

When I first envisioned this blog, I was fairly naive. I wanted to write the best stories I could, use this as a place where I could talk about that process with others, and have links where people could find my work.

After going through this marketing training, learning all the ins an outs of relevant posts, analytics, overarching plans, content management, etc., I realize my job will benefit from the information immensely,

However my heart tells me the same is not true about my writing, meaning no one is going to read this blog (or my books) but me and maybe a few close friends.

And you know what? That’s okay. This is more of a journal than a blog. There will never be sales pitches here – only an invitation to share. I will never have an agent mainly because the thrill of queries and sales are not why I write. I always craft my endeavors as if I’m telling myself and one or two good friends a story in a campfire setting anyway. I’m not out to conquer the world. If I did make a few dollars someday, I wouldn’t mind, but I’d only sink it back into paper and ink costs (because it seems there is nothing like scribbling edits all over copy with multicolored pens).

So to whoever is reading this (including the crickets), I promise to keep this a place of invention, imagination and possibility, free of sales pitches, advertizements and buy-one-get-one-free. Oh, and I will try and post once a month in 2018.

Enjoy the holidays and have a wonderful new year.

Good reads and writing updates

Happy Halloween! Time to dust off the blog and make an entry.

Books I’m currently reading:

  • The Daily Stoic: 366 Meditations on Wisdom, Perseverance, and the Art of Living, by Ryan Holiday and Stephen Hanselman (this is a wonderful morning read – one meditation per day)
  • The Etymologicon by Mark Forsyth (this is a wonderful bedtime read – a little each night)
  • Sneaky Uses for Everyday Things, by Cy Tymony
  • A Serpent’s Tooth, by Craig Johnson

Books I’ve read lately:

  • The Power of Habit, by Charles Duhigg (great book)
  • The Highwayman, by Craig Johnson
  • Everyone writes, by Ann Handley

The book I finished, the one waiting for illustrations, is now on hold due to personal injury. Most other writing ventures are too, while I heal. I am cranking out short stories, as I can, but progress is slow. I will heal eventually, though, and will post when I get back up to speed.

Fall update on writing ventures

The first Sara book is now in ePub format, thanks to a very dear friend. I still need to add the chapter illustrations and the cover art. As an exercise, I keep querying agents and keep tweaking the query letters. The rejections have been much kinder lately, and the query text is being honed into a great jacket blurb, so I’m happy.

The sequel is progressing rapidly – almost too fast. I would guess I’m two-thirds of the way through it. Unlike the first two stories that merged into the first book, this one is coming in bits and pieces, not in a linear write. From past experience, this means one, I won’t get bored with it, and two, it will need a massive editing effort.

Since it’s already September, I am hoping to take a break soon and write some crafty or spooky stories for my friends. I already have a few years’ worth to start the next free anthology, so maybe that can be assembled next year at about this time.

As always, any and all comments on writing or reading are welcomed, but at this point, I know this site is populated by fly-bys, spammers, and crickets (which suits me perfectly).

Take care until next time.

Updates

The illustrations for the (now first) book in the Sara series are still in progress, as are the final edits. All will be handed over to my friend in July for online publication processing. Because there are illustrations, I decided to follow my friend’s advice and not to go through the Smashwords meat grinder. Instead, there will be a prepped file that is far more flexible for devices to navigate.

The second book in the series has shot through the 50k word mark and looks to be a good-size novel when completed (though thankfully, not in the same word count category as the first).

Good reads and other updates

Books I’m currently reading:

  • Everyone Writes, by Ann Handley (great book)
  • The Daily Stoic: 366 Meditations on Wisdom, Perseverance, and the Art of Living, by Ryan Holiday and Stephen Hanselman (this is a wonderful morning read – one meditation per day)
  • The Etymologicon by Mark Forsyth (this is a wonderful bedtime read – a little each night)

Books I’ve read lately:

  • The War of Art, by Steven Pressfield (fast and interesting read)
  • The Gates of Fire, by Steven Pressfield (stunning and hypnotic)

My current work, the sequel to the first Sara stories (combined in the Unusual Haunting of Sara Leigh Larson), is about halfway along. I am slow on the chapter illustrations for Haunting, but making progress. The deadline for the final edit and all illustrations is fast approaching. It should be polished and posted by September.