Tuesday, January 26, 2016


Victims.... At some point we have all become victim to one sham or another, myself included.

There are things we want and when an opportunity pops up, we don't always do due diligence research to see what we're getting into. It sounds good and the price is right..... But in the end we've wasted time and money, while someone else is making a living, using our money.

At my now, ripe old age of,,,,,, well, anyway, I now look at things differently and when something looks too good, it usually is.

As a writer, fiction or non-fiction, we all need to edit our work. Try as we may, we can't do it ourselves, we can't always see the forest, for the trees, as the expression goes.

So, we spend endless amounts of money and time, trying to find an editor that we can work with, because to be successful, we need a good working partnership with our editor.

But somewhere in the backs of our minds, we're thinking, 'there should be an editing program that will help me simplify this process.

Recently, yours truly, had the same thoughts and ah hunting I did go.

Most of what I found was for non-fiction - tweaking text books, speeches, etc.  But then, I saw one that boasted that it was for fiction writers!!!!  Yea! Salvation was at hand. My editing process will be cut down to practically nothing.

But, at my ripe old age, something in my grey matter said, "if it sounds too good,"

So, doing due diligence, I tried their test sight - and when I got my results back, from an award winning piece I'd written. [of course I didn't tell them it was an award winning piece] there was not one word about punctuation, which is my biggest downfall.

What it was, was a bunch of categories that told me how many times I used the word, 'the, or were, and other words a writer uses a lot of.

And for this, they wanted me to give them money, while claiming this was the world's best editing system for fiction writers.

I don't know, maybe someday I'll find one that actually helps cut down the editing time and hard work.

So, what I'm trying to relate here, is, beware of things that sound, too good. Do your research and save the pain to your bank account...

until next time

Wednesday, January 20, 2016


Sorry about being a day late, but busy yesterday - all day - moving furniture from storage to the house, basement, event center and shop....

Now, on to bigger and better things. It seems lately that I've been asked on several occasions, "How long should a manuscript be?"

"What kind?" I ask, and the looks I get astound me. They have no idea what I'm talking about or I don't know what they're talking about.

A story is as long as it needs to be. Although many publishers have guidelines as to the lengths they want, based on who you are. If you're a famous, moneymaking writer, your book can be as long as you want it to be.

But, if you're a newbie, then you need to follow their guidelines.

Let's say you have a nine hundred to a thousand page extravaganza, and you're not yet well known - maybe you should consider turning it into a series - break it up into 3 or 4 books. Publishers like that.

If you're writing a children's picture book - 28 pages is comfortable range.

Young adult readers seem to have a shorter attention span. Learn about you audience and write with that in mind.

The bottom line is, your story is as long as it should be, especially if you go the self publish route.  Selling it may be another subject....

If you're writing for or sending to a publishing house, do a bit of searching to see what they want and maybe you'll need to add a few hundred words, or possibly cut out a thousand words. It all depends on the kind of story you're writing and for whom.

The bottom line is - write your story as you see it in your head. You can always do something with it later....

Until later,

Tuesday, January 12, 2016


Pride comes in many forms, but the pride I'm talking about today is finishing a project you started, which can be anything from mowing the grass to climbing a mountain.

Or, for the writer, writing those two words, "the end."

That's where my pride comes into play, today. I wrote, "the end," to my latest book, that I still have to write a title for. But the bottom line is, I have finished another project I started. Plus, I can be doubly loud with my crowing because I also finished my children's book a few weeks back. So I now have two books to get published.

Which brings me to another point. Since winning awards for my efforts in the writing of three novels, I have several publishing companies vying for my signature on contracts to represent me.

Hey, this ole cowboy is walking on cloud nine right now.

I've come down to two; one for my novels and the other one a children's book publisher. I still have a ways to go, but things are looking brighter.

No, no, you don't need to congratulate me - I'm not doing anything other writers or mountain climbers aren't doing - Like them, I'm working and trying to do the best I can by writing stories people like to read.

But in the end, when you do see the silver cloud at the end of the rainbow, that's when the feeling of pride kicks in, and that's what it's all about, that quiet feeling of pride in accomplishing the goal we set for ourselves.

So now it's your turn. Go out there and run that marathon, climb that mountain or finish that book, or, go help someone who is less fortunate than you... there's pride in that, to.

Until next time, take a deep breath and go for it...