The “how to” of Paperback Writing

“Butt in chair, hands on keyboard.” Butt in seat, fingers on typewriter. Keister on the beanbag. Hands on keys. Posterior in a chair (unless you’re at a standing workstation.) Hands on keys (unless you wanna use pen and paper.) Whoever said it first, however they said it, it’s probably the most sound writing advice you’ll ever receive.

Writing takes persistence. (Lordy, does it take persistence. For some of us it may be crossing a line into pig-headedness.) Writing takes a tough skin (sometimes bordering on big-headedness.) But first and foremost, as the often repeated quote by some well-informed writer said, it requires an unrelenting work ethic. Every day. Sit down. Write. – that’s for those of you who were looking for a secret sauce recipe. That’s the biggy and the bitty of it, and I’m not being flippant. Well, okay, I’m a little flip.

You cannot edit if you haven’t written. (I’ll return to this topic later in “The Shi##y First Draft” coming to a blog near you.)

So follow The Paperback Writer if you’re interested in writing and looking for the step-by-steps, advice from the trenches, a day-in-the-life-of, and all things writerly.

Now, go write some stuff!

Gimme Five, er, Six…

polydactyl kitty, Hemingway House, Key West, Florida

I just spent a wonderful week having fun in the sun, visiting the home of Ernest Hemingway, in Key West, Florida and communing with the wonderful polydactyl kitties that have free range over the place… and I mean, free range. Kitties to the left, right, above lounging in gutters, in Papa’s bed, office, gift shop… On the less than one acre estate, there are nearly sixty cats, a notable number of them with an extra digit that makes them look like lions… with mittens.

Maybe a little bit of Hemingway’s magic rubbed off? There sure was a lot of testosterone raging in that house at one point in time. I’m reading a collection of his short stories. “Lions, and tigers and bears, oh my!” But the man could write. (I suspect all of the testosterone laden stories were to compensate for his flare for decorating. He shouldn’t have had to try so hard.)

Anyway, after great times spent exploring the house and grounds, the lovely town of Key West, and the Harbor Walk, including a night on an Airbnb sailboat!, we headed north for a few days exploring the Everglades and its tropical wetland, multiple eco zones, many, many birds, a couple of manatees, and enough alligators to impress even Ernest Hemingway.

Happy to be home again with my very average, very sweet five-toed kitties.

Whatcha Readin’? Whatcha Writin’?

Wow. Just finished reading Hank Green’s AN ABSOLUTELY REMARKABLE THING. It’s a page turner, a “can’t put it down” kinda book. They do come along every once in a while. In it, the main character discovers a “sculpture” in Central Park, a very large sculpture that appeared over night, and with the help of her videographer friend, they acquire the unique distinction of being the first to video tape the creation and dub it, “Carl”. Then Carls are discovered to have turned up in public spaces all over the world.

The book touches on social mob culture that hits close to home without being preachy. Affiliate links are eluding me, so if you are so inclined, you may want to check it out here: AN ABSOLUTELY REMARKABLE THING .

Currently, I’m reading Agatha Christie’s Mrs. Marple’s short stories, and about to begin ACCIDENT ON THE A35 for my book club. BTW, John Green’s novel was a bookclub pick. Bobbi, you chose well!

A Vacation… from Writing?

Nope. Can’t do it. But I tried. I had a plan to “take off” the entire month of December. Not possible. Writing is a passion. You’ve just gotta do it! But we can call it a kind of vacation, what with the holidays… and company… and whole house cleaning before company comes… and then someone in this house–someone who is overly fond of books–had the bright idea to build a reading nook… and there was that vacation imposed by a week of flu…

Me, and Jem, and Scout… and the ghosts of kitties past.

But I’m back at it again! Started the re-writes for JAIL BIRD, another cozy mystery set in the recurrent town of Poropotank. Give me a month and a half. Er, give me two months… in case something else decides to make me take another “vacation”.

In the meantime, here’s a little silly of me and my writing muses, a.k.a., Jem and Scout, our two new kitties. Could life be any better? Writing daily with cats at my feet, and on the keyboard, and wrapped around my neck.

Addendum note: my apologies for all of the bizarre links to weird ads. I know only enough to be dangerous and I haven’t figured out how to remove those pesky ads. I think I see another blog post idea in this.

Whatcha Readin’? Whatcha Doin’?

What a grand weekend! This weekend marked the official launch of my Holiday release, In the St. Nick of Time… Again, the second in my “St. Nick of Time” collection.

Thank you to the fine folks at A&W Collectables Antique Mall for hosting me again!

A pirate, a witch, a librarian and a Marsh Princess walk into a diner…

Or therebouts. 🙂 That’s what’s happening in The St. Nick of Time…Again. Check it out here!