Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Hammer Out a First Draft

For a couple decades I tried to write a novel and never managed to finish a dozen attempts.

I would always get more and more wrapped around the axle the farther I would get into a project. I would always go back and revise and tune and never finish.

It wasn't until I was challenged to just hammer my way through an entire first draft without revising ever. Scrivener helped a lot with this. It has real time spell check and automatic repair. Once I allowed myself to move along it was easy. Knowing the first draft would be far from perfect freed me.

Another thing that happens when you constantly go back and revise and edit from the beginning is that you get an unbalanced book. The beginning will not have the same voice as the end. This is simply because the beginning had been gone over so much more than the end. I have read dozens of books like this.

--Hammer through all the way to the end. Then go back. You will feel great! 

Tuesday, May 26, 2015


Part of my process is a detailed outline. As I write I am not completely tied to my outline but it give me the general direction I am going.

I use the writing tool Scrivener. It makes outlining easy. It uses 3x5 cards on a cork board as a method. It allows you to label chapters and provide a small description of the chapter or scene.

The Internet has a lot of examples of Plot Diagrams as well. These can be handy for doing a one page start to even give you a start on your outline.

As always, just do it. Make it a habit. Two hours a day and you will get  a lot done. But don't get stuck at the outlining step. Limit yourself by setting your own deadlines.

--Have fun with it...

Thursday, May 21, 2015


I really like doing research because I like science in my science fiction.

The picture to the right is my computer lab at home where I do research, binge watch TV and use a lot of electricity. (and procrastinate)

I can not stress enough how important it is to do research. You will piss readers off if you get something wrong.

I get so pissed off when I read, "He clicked off the safety on his Glock..." because Glocks have no safety switch.

Get all the science right about gravity and when I make the step into fiction my readers are far more likely to believe me, or at least, forgive me.

--Still Falling has anti-gravity, AIs, FTL travel, guns and even bees. All researched.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015


Book 2: The Broken Cage will be going to my beta readers on June 1st. Their feedback will be back by July 1st. My final draft will be done by August 1st and then it will go to the editor for the final polish.

While all that is happening I am writing Book 3: Blood of the Scarecrow. That will be released in March of 2016. I will also be posting a few free short stories from the Solstice 31 Saga along the way.

--This is fun.

Thursday, May 14, 2015


For centuries we have been building a civilisation of Gold and Steel! What has it given us? Peace? Understanding? Happiness?
— Metropolis

Time travel used to be thought of as just science fiction, but Einstein's general theory of relativity allows for the possibility that we could warp space-time so much that you could go off in a rocket and return before you set out.
--Stephen Hawking

The most watched programme on the BBC, after the news, is probably 'Doctor Who.' What has happened is that science fiction has been subsumed into modern literature. There are grandparents out there who speak Klingon, who are quite capable of holding down a job. No one would think twice now about a parallel universe.
--Terry Pratchett

Friday, May 8, 2015

Long Busy Week

My father-in-law, Grandfather to my children, Bert Miller, died last weekend.

He was a day short of his 90th birthday.

He was the last parent of that generation left.

I will miss his smile and the sound of his laugh.

--RIP, Bert.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Baily Echos the World

Here is the actual team:

--It might be easier to type if you got off my computer...