Challenge,  On Writing,  publishing

Story Four a Slight Miracle

Well, Not a Miracle, but Some Luck…

Why am I calling this luck? Because exhausted from making 10,000 steps and working all day on workshop stuff, I didn’t get to my writing computer until 3:15 a.m.

Oh, oh…

My Day Went Like This…

Managed to do some stuff around here and get out by 2:30 p.m. (Wheeling a garbage can and a recycling can down a steep driveway in 40 mph winds is a joy, let me tell you.)

It was Monday, so my CFO duties kicked in and I went to all three of our stores, talked with all three managers, got the deposits, and did all that, including taking a massive load of mail to the post office from one store.

So got back to the WMG offices about 5 p.m. and worked there with Allyson and Josh for a short time on Pulphouse. Then I started formatting Issue Zero.

To the grocery store at 7 p.m. and home before 8 to take a nap and cook dinner. Watched an hour of The Voice. The talent this year is just off the charts and the competition brutal. Writers really have it lucky. If you don’t believe me, just watch The Voice.

Then back to WMG offices to work on loading workshops to Teachable as well as getting my steps. I hit my 10,000 with all of five minutes to spare tonight. Yow… too close.

Got home around 12:30 a.m. and took another short nap before heading to watch some television with Kris.

Back up here around 1:30 a.m. and worked on the workshop assignments, getting them finished and out, until 3 a.m.

Took a break and finally got to my writing computer at 3:15 a.m.

If it wasn’t for this challenge, there would be no way in hell I would have written a story tonight. I was exhausted.

But I sat down and looked at my half-title sheets. I saw “The Remarkable…” and “Way She Died” so I slammed them together for “The Remarkable Way She Died” and fired up on a Cold Poker Gang mystery.

My little voice kept saying, “Keep it simple, stupid, you only have two or three hours and you are tired.”

But nope, my creative voice ignored my little voice and came up with an impossible way for a woman to die, and my detectives had to solve the cold case.

I wrote 900 words by 4 a.m., took a break to get something to eat, then staggered back in here and finished the story by 5:15 at 2,100 words.

Got lucky. I just can’t be getting to the writing at 3 a.m. and tired. I need to be at the writing computer by midnight. I got to work on that. (grin)

So far, here is the November Short Story Challenge. (10th through 30th.. I will have covers in a few days as well.)

1… Under the Skin of Death… 4,400 words…. Total words so far… 4,400 words.
2… Half a Clue… 3,700 words… Total words so far… 8,100 words
3… That Human Fear… 1,700 words… Total words so far… 9,800
4… The Remarkable Way She Died… 2,100 words… Total words so far… 11,900

So total writing time today… 2 hours.
Total work time… 9 hours.


Workshop Special Offer Still Available… 3 Days left…

So here is the offer broken down.

— Two Regular 6-week workshops. Value of $300 each or $600 total.

— Two Classic workshops. Value of $150 each or $300 total.

You get the $900 in workshops for $500.

To sign up, contact me at To let me know you want a workshop offer. You do not have to pick the workshops at this point. Then simply pay for them through Paypal or set up a payment arrangement with me another way.

You can get more than one workshop gift if you like. We have a few people getting three or four groups of workshops to set themselves up for workshops in the coming year.

Remember…  This offer ends November 16th.

Workshop information here.

And if you want to see what the workshops on Teachable look like, go here.

And feel free to pass this on to anyone you might think will be interested…

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  • Annie Reed

    Man, The Voice this season? Especially Jennifer Hudson’s team? Kickass singers, every one of them. Any other year, all six (well, five) would be in the lives (if they hadn’t all chosen Jennifer as a coach). What last night really showed was the importance of song choice. And letting emotion tell the story of the song. Thinking there about the surprising–but oh so deserved–last selection on Blake’s team. Amazing.

    • dwsmith

      Yeah, the entire season is a stunner. And emotion and song choice really is everything.

      Aren’t you glad we writers don’t have to go through all that? Yow.

  • Mark Kuhn

    Dean, which Cold Poker Gang novel comes after Ace High? Is Ace High the most recent? Trying to figure out if I missed one.