Making Money Mondays — a Day Late and a Dollar Investment

Yes, I know it isn’t Monday, but Misty kindly announced the *Big News* yesterday and that gave me another day to put this together. That news? The e-anthology TRIALS, to be followed soon by TRIBULATIONS, went up for pre-order on Monday.

Making money means an investment — in time, creativity, sweat equity, and sometimes an outlay of money. To invest money in the book/e-book market, you have to have a clear goal(s) in mind, a plan for recouping the outlay, the ability to put it all together, and a way to advertise. You also need the right people (writers, editors, publisher, PR person). All this has been covered by others in previous *How to Anthology* posts, so I am avoiding going over well-trod ground. Instead, I want to tell a little about my decision making process for these anthologies — the answers to why I did all this.

The Rogue […]

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Some of Magical Words Folks

A bunch of us will be the Cabarrus County Library, in NC, today–Saturday, 9-25.

https://www.facebook.com/events/299131873791961/

Come see us!

Faith

The New Magical Words!

Hey beloveds!

Some of you are just dropping by for the first time, and others have been with us from the beginning. Those of you who’ve been around for a while know that we’ve gone through a few changes over the years. Well, we’re making a big change now.

Instead of a scheduled rote of blog posts, we’re going to move to a more open-ended style. Your favorite writers are still going to post here, but in addition to their posts, we’ll be including a daily round-up of links to articles that might be interesting to you, our readers. Over the next few weeks, we’ll also be including posts by guests of the site, opportunities for in-person visits at cons and book signings, interviews, links to podcasts and book reviews, too. We’ll be changing the look of the site a little, with a new banner. But don’t panic – we […]

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“God-Fearing Woman”

I watch a lot of true-crime shows on the ID channel. As I was watching one of them–American Monsters–where the wife of a nascent film director is murdered, I noticed the cop describing her on the footage from that day. He said “she was a good woman, a god-fearing woman.”

I’ve heard that a lot before. It’s a compliment, at least in many Christian religions. I don’t know about other religions. I’m guessing yes. Now, one of the first things that struck me about that was that once upon a time, the Puritans believed that God was angry and rather malevolent (read Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God, among others). By the Victorian period, that had shifted. God was benevolent. Except then, the world started changing beyond fast and a lot of bad things started happening in the world–wars, disease, economic difficulties, and so on. So the Victorians […]

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Hobbit Tomatoes

There’s a scene in “Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Rings” in which the hobbits are camping on Weathertop, waiting for Aragorn to do some scouting. Frodo falls asleep, but Merry, Pippin and Sam decide to start a little fire and cook some food. When Frodo wakes, his friends offer him “tomatoes, sausages and nice crispy bacon.”

A number of filmgoers became upset with this, because they felt that tomatoes, being a New World food item, didn’t belong in the setting. You read that correctly – the story is about four little humanoids carrying a magical ring to destroy in a volcano, being escorted by a 90 year old ranger who rode and fought as if he was in his thirties, under the direction of a wizard, but somehow tomatoes didn’t make sense.

I read about this in the afterword of a novel* I just finished, and it […]

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The Inciting Event

Before I even start, go ahead and google the phrase Inciting Event.

Don’t bother to read them all. Half make no sense. But I did like one by Lucy Gold at Answers.com. According to Lucy, an Inciting Event is, “The conflict that begins the action of the story and causes the protagonist to act. Without this event, there would be no story.” She has edited the original with a more wordy and writerly addition, but really, it was unnecessary. This says it all, and it’s pretty much how I explain and use the concept.

Understanding the theory of the Inciting Event, and its placement, and executing it well, are, together, the most important things in grabbing readers for your story: novel, short, novella, novelette, or even an epic series of a million words. “Wait!”, you say. “George R.R. Martin’s sixth novel in the Game of Thrones had color pictures and […]

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When Life Gets In The Way – And It Will

We are writers. No matter what we write, we are writing about life, about living, about the things that matter to us, about the pain and joy and music and poetry of living. We are writing about the insecurity and excitement of romance, a mystery that needs to be solved, a life decision that needs to be made, a loss that has been suffered, a battle or war that needs to be fought.

We write, and as we write, we incorporate and use every good and wonderful and easy thing that has happened to us, as well as every difficult and painful and dreadful thing that has happened to us in the past. All that we are, all that we have survived, is part of our characters and our plotlines and the landscapes of our writing. The feel of water from a cold shower can be interpreted and twisted into […]

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