Challenge,  On Writing,  publishing

1/6/17 Daily… Stay Safe

I Hope Everyone Stays Safe…

As I write this both coasts and a bunch of the middle part of the US is getting pounded by some nasty storms. Really nasty stuff. Hang in there, this winter will pass eventually.

What I Learned Today (Streak Day 6)

I learned once again how easily distracted I am. This challenge project coming up starting Sunday has my imagination, so the novel I am working on just sort of stopped.

Actually, it came to a halt at a perfect cliffhanger. I wrote the cliffhanger, started to put in the next chapter header and went, “Nope, perfect place to put this book on hold for a week or so.”

Yes, I do know what happens in the next few hundred words after the cliffhanger and I left myself a note. Then I spent the rest of the night backing up both my computers and playing on Google with no clue what I was looking for.

But I did learn a great deal about hotels. No idea why yet, but it was cool stuff.



This might be our best bunch of workshops in one month that we have ever done. One of the surprising workshops to many that seem to make a lot of difference is the Teams workshop.

No surprise to me because understanding teams and how to use them makes writing a novel a ton easier. Make that a thousand tons easier. (grin) But most writers don’t understand teams until forced to look at them.

Of course, only one person is signed up on Writing Fiction Sales Copy even though most indie writers I know need it desperately and their sales would increase if they didn’t have dull, passive, plot-filled, and boring blurbs. But everything thinks they know how to write sales blurbs for books.

And the new workshop, Secondary Plot Lines is going to be something on the order of the Teams awareness. Once you know how to write secondary plot lines, once again writing books becomes a ton easier. And at the same time your books feel more complex.

People ask me how I can write novel after novel without an outline for any of them. One major reason is that I understand and use teams and I understand and use secondary plot lines. That and depth and advanced depth techniques and plotting with depth and the books sort of write themselves.

I just try to type fast enough to keep up.

Any questions at all, feel free to write me. And if you are confused as to which workshop to take first, we have a full curriculum posted on its own page.

Class #11… Feb 7th … Endings
Class #12… Feb 7th … Point of View
Class #13… Feb 7th … Writing Mysteries
Class #14… Feb 7th … Speed
Class #15… Feb 7th … Teams in Fiction
Class #16… Feb 8th … Depth in Writing
Class #17… Feb 8th … Plotting With Depth
Class #18… Feb 8th … Writing Fiction Sales Copy
Class #19… Feb 8th … Writing Secondary Plot Lines
Class #20… Feb 8th … Advanced Depth


The Writing of HEAVEN PAINTED AS A SUNSET: A Ghost of a Chance Novel

(To be continued after a coming writing challenge…)


Tracking Running… January 6, 2017
3 miles. No running.
Weight 189 19 more to 170 goal.
Month to date distance: 24 miles

7 Days until the first half-marathon…
Note about the exercise day: This half marathon will be painful, at best.

Tracking Word Counts… January 6, 2017
Totals For Year 4, Month 6, Day 6 (Year started August)
Writing in Public blog streak… Day 1,205

— Daily Fiction: 1,300 original words. Fiction month-to-date: 14,500 words  
— Nonfiction: 00 new words. (from last night) Nonfiction month-to-date total: 00 words 
— Blog Posts: 400 new words. Blog month-to-date word count: 2,400 words
— E-mail: 11 e-mails. Approx. 600 original words.  E-mails month-to date: 132 e-mails. Approx. 9,300 words
— Short Fiction Goal: 120 stories (July 1st to June 30th). Stories to date: 8 stories.
— Novel Goal: 12 Novels. Novels finished to date: 3 novels.

Comments About the Writing of the Day: Focused forward to a new challenge.


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  • Sheila

    Thanks, Dean. We’re at 7″ on our porch here in the northern NC Piedmont area. It’s still snowing!

    Ah, the “oooh, shiny!” syndrome. i certainly have it, and it’s hard to rein it in sometimes. I am a work in progress. 😀

  • Dave Raines

    Oh, Dean. I know I could use both Teams and Secondary Plot Lines. I also know that I’m within spitting distance of the end of the current novel, and that I’d want to go back and rewrite the whole thing if I knew more about either. I think I’ll pass this time.

  • Victoria Goddard

    When I was growing up, every day after school my mother would ask my sisters and me what we had learned that day. Some days it was something exciting, some days it was ‘I learned that I really don’t like doing x’. These daily learning posts remind me of that little ritual, which I really liked and which certainly helped me to focus on what I was learning.