Yep, it has been. I’ve been off since last Saturday and have one more day. This week I’ve kept a 1,000+ word a day pace and will finish up a good first draft of the first act of the book. And I’ve kept a family life together by writing in the mornings whilst the rest are sleeping. Me and the Mrs. got to see Brandi Carlile last night with the Seattle Symphony. Wow, when she comes through your town, make it a point to go see her. I’ve you don’t know of Brandi, check out this video of her singing one of her most popular songs.

Excellent Thanksgiving, too!

Oh, and I wasted time had fun playing Diablo 3. 🙂

Two years. I started this blog two years ago as an accountability partner for myself. To keep myself writing. To track my progress, ups, and downs.


  1. The act of writing itself
  2. Encouragement from other WordPress bloggers
  3. Meeting other writers at the PNWA annual conference
  4. Working with my first editor
  5. Working with my author coach
  6. Finishing a draft of the full book
  7. Getting positive feedback from agents at a conference
  8. Getting feedback from family, friends and the writing group
  9. Learning at conferences and seminars
  10. Learning from reading so many great novels and writer books


  1. Revising (Until I learned to enjoy it)
  2. Writing back story (Until I figured out a method)
  3. Crap, this is taking a long time
  4. Man I’m a crappy writer
  5. I’ll never finish this thing
  6. I’m so tired of this story
  7. Killing off my first character
  8. Switching main characters
  9. Learning how much I don’t know
  10. Not being done

It’s been a great journey. I’m 11k words into this current draft. We’ll see if this is the one.

Thanks for riding along with me.




I’m a writer, not an author, yet. I have four jobs. Husband/Father, Day job, writer, and reader. Today, I’m gonna focus on the reader job.

I realized that reading is an important part of my writing life. Essential. So I have made it a job. A fun job. I set aside time for reading just like I set aside time for writing. I have reading goals. I read books I wouldn’t normally read because I’m trying to learn something.

I focused on reading just three years ago. I identified it as one of my jobs last fall. It’s a great job! I like the discovery of reading just like I like discovering the details of a story when I write.

I’m not saying anything new. The majority of writers I know are readers first. Their love for writing came from their love of reading.

That’s all. I need to go clock in. 🙂


goodreads_logoI’m going to read more this year.
And, to kick myself in the pants, I’m publishing the list of books I’m trying to read this year.
Somewhere between 40-45 books. Wish me luck. 😀

We can follow each other this year over at goodreads, if you like —

Atwood, Margaret           The Handmaid’s Tale
Bell, Jason Scott              The Art of War for Writers
Carson, Anne                  Decreation
Dafydd, Fflur                    Twenty Thousand Saints
Dashner, James               The Death Cure (Mazerunner)
de Lint, Charles               Dreams Underfoot
Didion, Joan                     Slouching Toward Bethlehem
Franzen, Jonathan           Freedom
Gaiman, Neil                    Stardust
Gibson, William                Neuromancer
Gladwell, Malcom             Outliers
Hocking, Amanda            Wake
Howey, Hugh                  Wool
Hugo, Richard                 The Triggering Town
Hyde, Catherine Ryan     Funerals for Horses
Kidd, Sue Monk               The Invention of Wings
King, Stephen                 Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1)
Kingsolver, Barbara        The Bean Trees
Kinnell, Galway               Body Rags
Levitin, Daniel                This is your Brain on Music
Maas, Donald                 The Fire in Fiction
McCarthy, Cormac          No Country for Old Men
Murakami, Haruki            1Q84
Niffenegger, Audrey       The Time Traveler’s Wife
North, Phoebe                Starglass
Novakovich, Josip           The Fiction Writer’s Workshop
Olds, Sharon                  Stag’s Leap
Patterson, James           Witch & Wizard
Plath, Sylvia                   Crossing the Water
Quinn/Rail/Ryan             Writing Inside Out
Roth, Victoria                Insurgents (done)
Rushdie, Salman            Midnight Children
Sebold, Alice                  The Lovely Bones
Sedaris, David               Me Talk Pretty One Day
Smith, Zadie                  White Teeth
Vonnegut, Kurt             The Sirens of Titan
Wendig, Chuck             Cormorant
Yallowitz                       Legends of Windemere (probably 3 books)
Yan, Mo                        The Garlic Ballads
Zusak, Marcus              The Book Thief


Focus-On-Your-DreamsI’ve many interests, but have decided to focus on one for 2014. Doesn’t mean I will give up or totally ignore the other interests, like eating or sleeping. jk 😀 I mean to say I’m committing to one and only one thing, so far. Writing. I’ve learned that an important developmental activity is reading. I know, pretty obvious. But, I’ve realized I need to make time for reading along with the time I save for writing.

So, I had thought about rejoining my church’s worship band (I’m a bass player), but I need to focus. Worship band takes a bunch of commitment and focus and I really need that time to develop as an author.

As I reported last week, I’m done with the second draft of my first novel. Exciting. While I set it aside for a month before the “final” edits, (I don’t think i’ll ever feel totally done), I’m starting my second novel. I wrote the first 500+ words this morning. Same storyline as the first novel, so a second book in the series. I’ve been thinking about the new story for a few months. It is gelling now. Great start to a new year!

I’m well into revising the first chapter. I highlighted the heck out of first drafts, and am slightly more satisfied with the current working copy. I’m trying to be done with this second version of the first chapter by next Friday, the 9th. I’m on track.

I’m also reading “The Indie Writer’s Workshop” by Renda Bella Dodge. I’m halfway and have found it an easy read with practical helps and straight forward exercises. Recommended. It’s short.

Nothing humorous to say except that dancing pickles rarely end their lives on a sandwich.

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Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.


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