Marketing Yourself

Let’s start things out by asking ourselves a question: “How many people know that I am a writer?”  Hopefully the answer will reflect your ultimate ambitions for your writing. For example, if all you want out of your writing is a private pleasure, solely for your own enjoyment, it’s perfectly fine that the only one who knows you write is the sock puppet that decorates your bedpost.  But would that be enough if you plan to make a career out of your writing? “But Mike”, you say, “who would I tell and how?  I don’t know anyone in the publishing industry who might care.” To you I can only respond, “Fear not, young Jedi.  It’s not as daunting a prospect as […]

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Mowing the Lawn

One of my (many) weekly chores, at least during the summer, is mowing, raking and trimming my lawn.  I like to get started early in the AM before the day gets too hot and (because my family likes to sleep in) it frees up the rest of the day for family (see quality) time. I finish all my work, put away the mower, gas trimmer and tools and stand back to admire my handiwork.  Invariably, I notice some blemish to my work (damn, where did that thistle come from?  what the hell?  fairy rings?  Crap!)  So I trudge back to my shed and pull out a trimming shears and garbage bags and trim the errant pieces of grass that the […]

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The Art of Coincidence

Have you ever watched a television show or a movie and said “No Way!” to a sequence of events that were just too improbable?  Did the plot seem way too dependant on luck? Suspending belief is a key piece to enjoying some movies, but sometimes the creators simply take too many liberties with the audience.  As writers, we must be careful not to fall into that trap or we lose credibility. Does that mean that we should avoid the use of coincidence and luck in our writing?  Absolutely not, after all, what is life but a series of unexpected events?  It just means that we shouldn’t use them as a crutch; they should be used sparingly but with surgical precision to move the […]

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