Free Ebook – Choosing a Bible

choosing a bibleI wrote an ebook for BibleBuyingGuide.com on how to choose a Bible. This ebook covers topics such as who the Bible is for, how it will be used, covers, bindings, paper, fonts, tools, and more. You can download the book by clicking on this link or cover photo:

Choosing a Bible

 

 

How to Know You Are a Writer

I’ve been interested in many topics over the years but there has always been this one strength that always rises above the others: writing. Warning: this article includes a lot of tooting my own horn in order to get the point across. I’m trying to show how experience relates to strengths. Please be patient with me and think about your own experiences.

All through school my teachers complemented me on my writing. My papers were usually read to the class. I had a teacher in third or fourth grade that took my report home because she liked my writing. She ended up losing the paper and she asked me to rewrite it. This was a week after the field trip to the Kerns Bakery in Knoxville, TN. I couldn’t remember what I wrote but she said it still captured what she liked about the first paper.

I used to create my own comic book characters. I wanted my own publishing company and I wanted to be the main artist. When I didn’t feel comfortable enough about my drawing I went on to something else. What I didn’t notice is how easy it was for me to write all of the stories. I had them developed in no time with a high level of detail. I might not have been able to draw them, but I could have written them.

Then, in college my composition instructor used my first paper to show the other students what a well-written paper looks like. All through college my fellow classmates and teachers complemented my writing. The instructor in my capstone class (bachelors in Business Management) told me that I should start a business writing business plans. I should have listened to her.

My point is this: if writing comes easier to you than other activities that you’ve tried and fellow students and teachers tell you that you should be a writer… you should be a writer. If you feel an urge to write… you should be a writer. If you enjoy writing… you should be a writer.

OK, you’ve decided that you should be a writer…what next? You have several options depending on whether or not you want to make writing a full-time living. If not, then write what you enjoy and submit it to publishers or post it to your own blog. You never know what it can turn in to. If you decide that you want to be a full-time writer then learn as much about writing as you can and choose a topic (preferably another strength or something you have an education in). Next, decide if you want to be a technical writer or freelance writer. Both are great choices. Do as much research on both as you can to help you make a choice. We will look at your options in more detail in upcoming posts.

Some trivia: I hurt my hand a few days ago and I just wrote this article in about 15 minutes while typing with one hand. I think I should be a writer.

 

 

 

Free for Kindle – 206 Tips for Writing Fiction

This weekend tips(4/25-4/27) my 206 Tips for Writing Fiction is free! Here’s more information about the book:

This is a book of tips. It will look different than most books on writing. Rather than giving you long explanations and step-by-step instructions on writing fiction, this book list tips within categories. The categories cover many aspects of writing fiction and editing your work. The tips are in no particular order. The tips themselves are designed to be easy to use. They start with a quick statement, which is printed in bold, and then you’ll find a few sentences that talk about the benefits of the tip and/or an example of how the tip might be used. This book is not exhaustive. There are plenty more books of tips to be written on the subject of writing fiction.
Topics include:
• Choosing a genre
• Developing characters
• Plot
• General writing
• Getting ideas
• Staying motivated
• Managing your time
• Editing

Current Projects – Book 3 and 4 of my Fantasy Series

I’m currently working on the plot for the next two books in my fantasy series, Tales of Aarkan Zea Book 3: Dragon Master, and Tales of Aarkan Zea Book 4: Thwaylin’s Song. The series has a medieval setting and the plots intertwine. I’m also working on a comedy novella of one of the minor characters titled Tales of Aarkan Zea: Freedrin the Brave. I’ll follow that one up with a second novella titled Tales of Aarkan Zea: Freedrin the Magnificent. After I finish the first draft of books 3 and 4 I will write an overhaul of all four plots (to tighten them up). Then I’ll rewrite book 1 and get it published on Kindle, and then I’ll rewrite book 2, and so on. This series started as an idea to write an ongoing series that I would publish monthly on Kindle (much like comic-book style publishing – only with just words). Once I got started I decided to try my hand at a novel. I want to keep the series going, but more than anything I wanted to avoid a trilogy. Yesterday I was afraid a trilogy was in order. Today a brand new plot idea hit me that will drive the entire book 4 in such a way that it will have to be its own book. I’m also leaving enough questions and mysteries to continue the series even further.

 

Writing Challenge – Middles and Endings

A common problem with writing fiction is getting started and then not knowing where to go after you start. I have a few tips that turn the process into a fun challenge.

1. Write the ending first

If you know where your characters have to go it will be easier to get them there. This gives you a direction to take them.

2. Write a scene in the middle

This helps in the same way as writing the ending first. In the middle it works as a milestone.

Here’s the challenge: Write a dozen or so scenes at random. They can be about anything as long as it’s a situation you can imagine your characters in. Now, randomly place them in your story. This makes you have to write the connecting scenes to thread the plot throughout the story. If it works then keep it it. If it doesn’t, then rearrange the scenes, get rid of what you have to, change them, add to them, or just count it as practice. Maybe this exercise will help you warm up and get you ready to write. It might even spawn a few ideas that you wouldn’t have thought of any other way.

I’m a NaNoWriMo Winner!

2013-Winner-Facebook-ProfileI completed my NaNoWriMo novel today! My total word count was 50,001. This is my second novel this year. The first was Tales of Aarkan Zea Book 1: The Temple of Armaan Suun. I wrote it in 7.5 weeks between August and September while preparing for NaNoWriMo. My NaNoWriMo novel is the second book of the series: Tales of Aarkan Zea Book 2: Rise of the Aarkan King.

Update on my First Novel

My first novel is almost complete! I’m past the 50k word mark. My plan was to produce 12 chapter with each averaging 4500 words, and write 1 chapter a week. I wanted to finish it before November so I can write a new novel for nanowrimo. I’ve kept that very close to consistent and now I’m finishing up the last chapter. I’m a little ahead of schedule- so I’ll have more time to plan my next book.

So… about my first novel: It’s a fantasy setting. I think of it as medieval with dragons. I’m not writing high fantasy, so there are no elves, orcs, dwarves, etc. There are several creatures: dragons, something similar to dragons but smaller, something similar to rhinos, but bigger, and something similar to a yeti.

The story: Two friends and one enemy/friend go on a quest to solve the riddle of a stone with mysterious markings. They’re caught in the middle of a massive war and one side want’s the stone. This leads them to a hidden Temple that contains the most powerful and dangerous weapon even known, and one side thinks they can control it. It’s called The Temple of Armaan Suun. I’m considering writing part 2 for nanowrimo.

Preparing for NaNoWriMo

November is National Novel Writer’s Month. This year I’m considering taking the NaNoWriMo challenge: write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days. That’s almost 1700 words per day. To prepare, I’ve decided to write a specific word-count on a fiction story (most of my writing is non-fiction) every day until I’ve made it a habit. Then, I will raise the word-count until I reach 2000 words per day. I have some ideas for my NaNoWroMo novel. I won’t start writing until November, but it doesn’t hurt to plan ahead. It’s just around the corner.

For more information visit the NaNoWriMo website at: http://nanowrimo.org