Blog Archives

Word of the Day

I began “Word of the Day” on November 1, 2017 as help for those participating in #NANOWRIMO — National Novel Writing Month — an international organization of people endeavoring to write a novel of 50,000 or more words entirely during

Posted in Writing

Essential Strategies for Backing Up Your Work

For some, it’s just a matter of uploading to the cloud. However writers have a number of challenges unique to their trade. Let me start by reminding you that the “cloud,” regardless of whose cloud, is just someone else’s computer.

Posted in Writing

The Memoir in Your Closet – Part 2 – Old Photos

Some of you may have an advantage being in possession of a family Bible with the name and birth date of every member of your lineage going back generations. Perhaps you have them from both your paternal and maternal sides.

Posted in Memoirs, Writing Tagged with: ,

The Memoir in Your Closet – Part 1 – Introduction

You don’t want to write a memoir, you can’t write a memoir, nothing exciting enough has ever happened to you to write a memoir, nobody would be interested in your memoir. It’s likely at least three of these four alibis

Posted in A Writer's Life, Writing Tagged with: ,

Everyone Cries…

…when they finish the first draft. You’d be unusual if you didn’t. Writing is a highly personal, even intimate exercise. So much of what we write, even if science fiction or fantasy is really about us. You’ve undoubtedly included—albeit hidden—your

Posted in A Writer's Life, Editing, Writing

Time Management – Part I: There’s No Such Thing as Multitasking

Before all you high-power business people join forces with soccer moms to march on my home with pitchforks and torches, let’s first define multi-tasking. It’s performing more than one functionally related, non-interdependent action at the same time. These actions may

Posted in A Writer's Life Tagged with: ,

What Does “Think Out of the Box” Really Mean?

SPOILER ALERT: The solution to the puzzle appears farther down, so don’t scroll until you’re ready. The concept of Think Out of the Box was created by Mike Vance over 30 years ago, and stems from a simple pencil and

Posted in Writing

Much, Many, More, Fewer, Less, Little

Simple rules: If you can count them or assign a number to them, MANY and FEWER are correct. If you can’t reasonably count them, use MUCH and LESS. This salad has too much dressing, and too many carrots. How much

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Don’t Stage and Block

I’m reticent to say “all,” but the vast majority of you are picturing each scene played out on the screen as you write it. Some may have the Hollywood stars already selected so when Spielberg asks you who’d you like

Posted in Writing Tagged with: , ,

The Final Word on Semicolons

Deep down in the bowels of English syntax there are convoluted, academic applications of semicolons; there are just two that you will ever use. An independent sentence is a complete, stand-alone sentence. The first use of semicolons is to connect

Posted in Uncategorized