Did someone say Free Short Story?

Hey all! This is just a quick announcement to let you know that Judgment Wheel, a fantasy/suspense short story, is completely free until Thursday, January 14th!

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“I killed the priests. Today I find out if their god has the guts to punish me.”

A convicted murderer faces execution for his crimes on the mysterious Judgment Wheel, a force that kills the guilty and spares the innocent. But the innocent don’t exist…do they?

You’re all fantastic readers and subscribers, and you deserve this free gift.

If you don’t own a Kindle device, you can download the free Kindle app on your PC or phone, so no excuses!

This deal only lasts for a few days, so go now! Also, if you shared the news with a friend, you’d make my day.

Get your free copy of Judgment Wheel!

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In the meantime, I hope you all have a wonderful day!

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The Writer’s Life According To Jack Sparrow

Yo-ho, yo-ho, a writer’s life for me…I think. Here are 11 gifs that sum up a writer’s life quite nicely.

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When a new idea hits you.
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When your cat mocks your new idea.
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Writer’s block.
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This chapter needs some work…
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The cat’s on the keyboard again.
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The first time someone asks about your book.
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When a friend/relative singles you out as a writer.
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When you’re forced to socialize.
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The one time you have company over.
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When someone criticizes your writing.
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When you get a good review on your book.

The Many Trials Of Being A Writer

No one ever said being a writer was easy. More often than not we’re plagued by adversity and trials. The bright side is these trials can make for some great stories to share! Here are some examples, in no particular order…

  1. Self-doubt and worry.
  2. Finishing a final draft and having to say goodbye to the characters.
  3. Distractions that blot out the sun like Persian arrows.
  4. Interruptions at your moment of most intense concentration.
  5. Chronic procrastination and/or writer’s block in all its devious manifestations.
  6. Missed deadlines. Met deadlines. Deadlines.
  7. That terrifying moment when you realize you’re out of coffee and/or tea and/or wine and/or chocolate.
  8. Staring at what you just wrote with your fingers hovering over ctrl+alt+delete.
  9. Headaches, bleary eyes, sore fingers, cramped wrists.
  10. The barrage of rules and advice and having to sift through it all to decide which ones to break.
  11. The lonely hours when it’s just you and the keyboard.
  12. The even lonelier hours when not even the keyboard likes you.
  13. Cat, get off my keyboaalsdagafwejrdfs…!
  14. Waiting to hear back from editors, agents, and publishers. Your fingernails will never be the same.
  15. Rewriting your opening line five thousand times and still not getting it right.
  16. When your characters go on strike and don’t talk to you for a week.
  17. LOUD NOISES!
  18. Lost documents and crashed hard-drives.
  19. Telling people you’re a writer and the ensuing blank stare.
  20. The ‘well…poop’ moment when you read a book and realize the plot is pretty much the same as your work-in-progress.
  21. When spell-check fails you…or when you realize you just can’t spell.
  22. Frequent late nights or all-nighters just to fill that elusive daily word count quota.
  23. When your friends are out having fun and you’re inside writing. You have friends, right?
  24. Rude reviews, rude rejections, rude criticism…
  25. Having to answer ‘What’s your book about?’ on the spot.

Of course, at the end of the day, it’s all worth it. And we wouldn’t want it any other way, because these trials make us stronger.

Which of these twenty-five writerly problems have you experienced the most? Which ones have I left out? Drop a comment, and don’t forget to subscribe/follow.

Keep calm and write on!

 

Why should I care about your characters?

Today I’m just going to pose a question and let you do the answering. There are millions of self-published novels out there. It’s only logical to conclude that many of them share similar plot, themes, and characters.

As a writer, I want people to read my story. You want the same for yours. You’re essentially grabbing a reader by the ears and telling her that out of the millions of novels in existence, she should read yours next.

Characters are the driving force of any story. Plots are exciting and entertaining, but a solid, well-crafted character keeps us coming back no matter what plot he’s thrown into.

Back to the question. I, as a reader, ask you, the writer, the following: since I have thousands of characters at my fingertips, why should I care about yours?

If you as the writer can’t answer that question in the first pages of your novel, I’ll probably stop reading and go find someone who can.

It’s harsh, I know. But it’s a competitive and saturated market. It’s the way things work.

The good news is you CAN answer this question. It’ll take a lot of thought and examination of your characters, and maybe some change or rewriting, but I have faith in you.

Keep in mind the answer has to be independent of the plot. Look at who your character is, not what he does or will do. Explore his connection with himself and with other characters. Find the beating heart that makes him live. Tear it open and see what’s inside. Then answer the question.

You should care about my character because _______ .

Fill in that blank and find a way to convey that connection in your story’s beginning, and you’ll win over a lot more readers than if you merely plowed on ahead with the plot.

Trust me. I’ll be one of those readers.