Writing Prompt: Write a Short Story Now...

Write a short story using a Unicorn, a Virgin and the word Wook.

Have fun!

photo credit: The Rocketeer via photopin cc

Have you written a novel? Here's your chance...

PERSONALLY, I don't like writing competitions, mostly because they ask for my hard earned cash.

However,C. Hope Clark a writer I admire and trust sent a link on Facebook regarding a competition I thought looked promising, more-so than forking over money in order to be recognized (or ripped off).

So, if you're into contests and think you have something worthy, here are the details:

WRITERS:  NOVEL CONTEST  Submit 10 pages and Summary - prize $1,000 and Contract - NO entry fee - deadline 31 March 2012 - Go here: PUBSLUSH

 AND, thanks, C. Hope Clark for thinking of us.

Zak - the appreciative.

photo credit: pedrosimoes7 via photopin cc

Writing: Driving Me Blogging Crazy...

A lot of writers get uptight about how many people are choosing to be self-published or vanity press published, etc. 

I don’t see this as a bad thing, per se but I always look for the good in everything and I guess the good here is that as the world gives birth to more people who want to become writers and ultimately get published then, fascination! More books can be sold.

After all, it is often said, to become a great writer, author, copywriter, Etcetera, you have to read a lot of the genre you want to see yourself published in.

To me, that simply smacks of more books being purchased. Cha-ching $ Sales. It’s a definite win-win ~ simple economics: Supply and demand equation.

So, if you happen to be one of these worry-warts stop stressing yourself out about who is publishing and how they go about it and concentrate on your own efforts.

Read, read and read some more, write, write and write some more, then read all over again ad infinitum. 

What goes around does come around (eventually) and pretty soon your turn will come too.

Zak – Blogging Publishing Crazy

Let's Just Write Something...


A young girl is waiting at school.

She has just learned that her mother has died violently. Describe the setting from the girls point of view WITHOUT telling your reader what has happened. 

How will the street look to this young girl?

What are the sounds? Colors? Smells? 

What will this girl notice?  

Write a 250 word description (or keep going if you get into it...)

Zak  - the doodler

Writing: What NOT to do as a Writer ~ Chuck Wendig enligtens us all...


I'm heading along to, The Writers Chatroom, today 'cause I've heard Chuck will be today's guest, Chuck Wendig that is. 

His website says, he is equal parts novelist, screenwriter, and game designer and the author of Double Dead, Blackbirds and Mokingbird. He's got a metric boatload of writing-related e-books available, including the popular, 500 Ways to be a Better Writer.

And then he mentions warm, gooey stuf like he lives in the wilds of Pennsyltucky with wife, dog, and newborn progeny. Eeee-gads this guy is breeding!!!

Anyway, if you want to check out his website and the post that will be used for chat tonight, starting at #11... We shall see, shall we? Just go HERE Terribleminds.

Zak ~ the eternal optimist

How important is spelling, grammar and typos?


To me, spelling mistakes are like painting over the walls of a battered old house. 

The scars of life on the walls of our houses leave all types of scratches, holes, squashed bug marks (you know the one's caused by those insects you smacked on the wall and sort of thought afterwards - Damn why'd I do that? ) and children's crayons, (nice happy scenes: This is mommy. This is daddy and me and the dog.) And, all sorts of things but with a bit of putty (fixing typos and spelling mistakes) and an undercoat (grammar and fixing POV) the old house can keep its character in tact but gains a whole new coat of paint to make it SHINE!

So, how important is all that stuff?

I like to be as professional in my writing as I can but as a mere human I realize being perfect is not an option. I guess this is the 'out' that I need and so I forgive myself for my boo-boos.

I hope you have learned to forgive yourself too. It's not the typos or the errors that come out that matter, it's what you end up doing with them that counts.

So, we write, write and write to get our words written and then we rewrite, rewrite and rewrite then we edit and edit and edit. Eventually we hope to get it right or is that write? Oh well here we go again...

Zak ~ the perfectionist.

What happens in a writers (editors) day?

I've been getting emails asking me what it is I do as a writer and editor so today I thought I'd share with you some of what I do in my writing day.  

My writing day is very short: between one hour and three hours a morning so I have to get as much done as I can in that time, then my normal working day (day-job and farming) begins.

As I've said before I love to help others get published and along the way I learn and grow in my writing too.

Here's an extract of an email I got this morning from one of my regular contacts.

Have you had your tea yet?

I had planed my novel to have three more stories. Do you think it could sell as a serial? 

I thought I had gotten all the tense problems out of it, guess not. I've learned so much from you, but it always seems I need to learn more. 
I have a lot of dialogue in my stories, is it too much? I like to have interaction with my people, but do I sacrifice action? I'm trying to understand my voice, so I can grow.

By the way in your story, you have a great voice, and strong. I could read anything you write, and not know in the beginning you wrote it, but by the time I finish, I would know it was you. We've just got to get you writing more.
                                        Skip Miller Word Warrior

Yeah, I’ve had my cup of tea. It was nice. I had the strangest dreams before waking.I always like to remember my dreams. Dreams are like storytelling  without the writing part and they flow and happen right there before your eyes with all the drama and excitement of any action movie. I am also one of the lucky ones that dream in color.

I like that you have three parts to your novel. I reckon you could sell anything you wanted to it’s just IF anyone will buy them  ;) 

If you do sell them then you will be able to say to the publisher that you can write the next one and so on. The trouble with serials for the publisher is that the advance is often given up front for the next book and then the publisher has to wait and wait for the author to write the next book. At least the publisher would not have to wait so long for yours, and that would be a good thing.

You are a good writer and storyteller. 

Writing is not something you become good at overnight. It takes years and years (and years) of learning and changing and learning and adapting and finally finding what works for you and just when you think you’ve nailed it – duh!- It WILL happen for you. 

Don’t worry about never being perfect just always put your best into every single word. If you do this the rest will happen. The best advice I got from someone was, “words have meaning”. If you think about this statement (really concentrate on it for a few days) then every word you use in writing has a job. That job might be to show a characters POV, or it might be to explain the exact meaning behind a particular point that the narrator wants the reader to know, or it might be to give the feeling behind one of the characters voices. It’s okay to write a cute little story out in five minutes using  stream-of-consciousness but to really write a good story that will compel people to keep reading it needs to be so well written that every single word has its job to do. If you can think like this when you are writing (yes, Skipper, it will slow you down somewhat) you will produce much better work. Writing is not a race, it’s something you work at word by single word.

You are finding your voice Skipper. In fact, I think I can describe your voice a little now. The dialogue in your stories is very much a part of your voice so don’t fight it. If you enjoy dialogue in your writing then chances are your readers will too. Remember, if you are enjoying the story and there’s a smile on your dial and the world disappears for the ten minutes or ten hours then chances are your readers will enjoy your work as much as, or even more than you did writing it. If this happens, WOW!

As for sacrificing action, the plot is what determines the action and the characters discussing their situation shows the reader the action so again don't be too worried about the action. It will come. It needs to blend into the story in such a way that the reader is never jolted out of the reading experience. 

What just happened? 

A lot of reading feels like meditation. We read and enjoy and then the story is over, and we either feel cheated, contented, disappointed, sad that the story has come to an end but happy we read it, or any other emotions depending on how good the book was written and whether the plot and characters held our attention for a while.  

Thanks for saying my writing was interesting. I agree I need to write more. I am working on it.

So, there you go people, a little bit out of my day... What happens in your writing day? I'd love to hear about it.

What the heck it's the weekend, Let's Write!

What the heck it's the weekend...


The aim of Freewrite is to extend your writing abilities or simply get you WRITING.

Here's what you do: 

Below is a picture. Don't look just yet.

After you check it out, grab your first thought. Don't analyze.

Now free write something inspired by the picture.

The rules [There are always rules with these exercises]
1. Don't think, WRITE!
2. NO Editing! (Do not even rewrite or correct typos).
3. The writing doesn't actually have to have anything to do with the picture below. Write where you're mind takes you. It might be totally unrelated.
4. Write for 10 minutes without stopping. (Set a TIMER)
5. Post your random thoughts in the comments section below. It can be long, short, happy, sad...

Looking forward to seeing what you come up with!