Challenge,  On Writing,  publishing,  workshops

Story Fourteen and Other Stuff


And story fourteen on the April challenge. I missed doing a cover today for the story from yesterday, so will try to do two today.

Tonight I was tired, so took a long nap and watched a bunch of television. By the time I got to the writing computer, it was 3 a.m.

Saw a half-title on my title sheets and just went with the half title. “Always a Way” and then put A Marble Grant Story under it.

So third Marble Grant story. She was a superhero in the Poker Boy universe, a friend of Poker Boy’s girlfriend, Patty. She got killed and became a ghost agent in the Ghost of a Chance world. But she is different. A ghost agent and a superhero. So a new spin-off of both series. I like her a lot.

So I managed 1,300 words before 4 a.m.

Took a break with some cereal, then another 1,200 words by 5 a.m.

Another short break, then finished it at 4,000 words by a little after 6 a.m.

Here at the Covers and Stories for the April challenge. 

Story #1… April 1… Not Easy to Kill the Light Next Door… 1,700 words 
Story #2… April 2… A Reason to Play a Hunch… 3,200 words 
Story #3… April 3… A Deal at the End of Time… 3,000 words
Story #4… April 4… A Nice Place for Murder… 3,400 words
Story #5… April 5… The Five Roads Tavern and Eatery …3,200 words
Story #6… April 6… The Last Short Putt of a Fearful Man …2,200 words
Story #7… April 7… The Wait …1,200 words
Story #8… April 8… Through the For Sale Sign …2,500 words
Story #9… April 9… Blind Date …4,100 words
Story #10… April 10… Keep Hoping for a New Tomorrow …1,700 words
Story #11… April 11… That Old Tingling …3,200 words
Story #12… April 12… The Last Man …2,500 words
Story #13… April 13… Smile …2,700 words
Story #14… April 14… Always a Way …4,000 words

(Plus six novel starts so far…)


May ONLINE Workshops 

All May online workshops are available and have openings.

ALSO, the workshop schedule through August is now posted. You can sign up ahead for any workshop you want through August.

So for information on how to sign up, go to…

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 #41… May 2nd … Author Voice
Class #42…  May 2nd … Business
Class #43…  May 2nd … Endings
Class #44…  May 2nd … Writing Fiction Sales Copy
Class #45…  May 2nd … Writing and Selling Short Stories
Class #46…  May 3rd … Depth in Writing
Class #47… May 3rd … Advanced Character and Dialog
Class #48… May 3rd … Cliffhangers
Class #49… May 3rd … How To Edit Your Own Work (new)
Class #50… May 3rd … Plotting with Depth



Tracking Running… April 14th, 2017
3 miles. No running.
Weight 194. (Goal 170)
Month to date distance: 50 miles

Tracking Word Counts… April 14th, 2017
Totals For Year 4, Month 9, Day 14 (Year started August)
Writing in Public blog streak… Day 1,303

— Daily Fiction: 4,000 original words. Fiction month-to-date: 34,700 words  
— Nonfiction: 00 new words. Nonfiction month-to-date total: 1,000 words 
— Blog Posts: 400 new words. Blog month-to-date word count: 9,800 words
— E-mail: 25 e-mails. Approx. 1,200 original words.  E-mails month-to date: 392 e-mails. Approx. 24,700 words
— Short Fiction Goal: 120 stories (July 1st to June 30th). Stories to date: 22 stories.
— Novel Goal: 12 Novels. Novels finished to date: 5 novels.


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  • JM

    Your brief background about Marble Grant raised a question for me.

    Have you ever written a story in a series, liked it, but realized it would paint you into a corner in some way and so you discarded the whole story? It could be killing off a character (maybe you’d want to use that character later, or maybe it would affect the main characters unacceptably to you). Or you had a character take some action which maybe changes the direction of the series in a way you don’t really want to follow. Or do you trust yourself that, whatever you did in that story, the creative part of you knew that you had to do it, and so you leave it alone?

    • dwsmith

      Nope, just leave it alone and let it stand. However, I do change up a series at times which makes an earlier story wrong in a detail or two. But I just leave the earlier stories alone. They stand as stories.

      The creative voice always wins. For me, worrying about stuff like that brings in horrid critical voice. (grin)

  • J. D. Brink

    I have dilemmas like JM’s from time to time, too. I usually kind of figure, “Maybe this story happened in the past and these are out of sequence, so it happened too late to screw up my plans going forward.” Of course killing someone off… makes that hard to do to. But if you ever watched the 90s Aeon Flux cartoons on MTV, she died in like every episode. It was her schtick.

    I also started writing another sci-fi/detective story and realized the other day that I should just follow Dean’s example. Why invent a new character every time? Just keep the name, it’s basically the same guy, similar world. Why slap new names on him every time?

    So thanks, Dean!