Here you will find everything to do with writing, whether it is my writing or what I'm learning from reading books on writing.  Reading, vocabulary, and grammar are the tools of the trade. The very best people to learn from are the ones who are seasoned writers who teach writing. You would be wise to enlist them as your mentors, as I have.

I haven't been writing much so far this year; a piece of flash fiction, checking my word count on a few of my longer novels, and adding a paragraph or more to a few of my books as the ideas come to me. But really, not much 'real' writing as I know I should be doing if I ever want to finish many of my novels. But that doesn't mean I'm sitting in front of the TV eating bon-bons (if you never had a bon-bon they are candy-coated balls of coconut - yum! which I unfortunately haven't seen around for years). 

I finished my 6th book. And now I move onto and write my next novel, right? Making that decision isn't so easy for me. You've heard of writer's block? I have writer's flow, or overflow. Should I work on and finish the book that has 80K + words written so far? Or how about the non-fiction book? Or maybe work on the one that I just started writing that has only 5K words and has a really interesting theme. There will be research so maybe I should finish the novel that I'm into for 30K + words.

I have new goals for 2022. And the list is long. It mostly consists of books I plan to write this year, or I should say, I plan to finish since I've started so many that are in various stages of completion. It is a great variety so I won't ever tire of writing one or the same one with just a little different plot. I know that is what a lot of readers (and publishers) have come to expect from authors. Think about Stephen King. How dare he write something other than horror! It is like typecasting for actors - some actors fight against that. And many have succeeded. But when an actor takes a role that is not his usual part, like Jim Carrey, the audience expects funny. Well, this role is serious. The audience is disappointed, they were expecting a comedy!

Stories that have a positive outcome and the hero reigns supreme are most likely a joy to read. They make you feel good, I suppose. They just don’t feel real to me. I prefer creating a character who has had a tough go of it, for whom life has been a bitch, and they just aren’t getting any breaks. That feels more real to me. Because life doesn’t always, usually, turn out perfect for us. We don’t meet the prince riding in on a white horse to save us, we don’t hit the mega-millions lottery, we don’t get to live in the suburban house with the white picket fence (if that is what we truly want).

I've heard many times from other writers the suggestion that we should write what we know. That makes sense to me since it has to be far more difficult to try to write about something you know nothing about. That usually means lots of research. But since I write, in my literary novels and collections of short stories, about the human condition based on people in my life or from my past, I would recommend that you might want to try something else. Try writing about who you know. And sometimes it takes just one incident about someone you knew from your past that left a deep impression on you and you've got a story. Your imagination will usually fill in the rest. This is where memoir writing meets fiction.