The Making of a Novel: Part 8


Hit 19, 770 words today with another few thousand still on the sideline ready for action. I got a beginning and an ending, but was worried about the middle. That’s where you’re likely to lose your reader if you can’t keep the pace and the interest going.

Thankfully, a couple ideas came along that should work nicely. I say should because that hasn’t always been the case. More than once I’ve gone down a path only to find it was a dead end and, kind of like Donald Trump, had to pivot.

I’m kind of excited about this story, even when sober. We’ll see.


The Making of a Novel: Part?


Okay, so I lost track of what part this is. I’ll look it up later. Put in several hours over the weekend, Saturday and Sunday. Another two thousand words. No rest for the wicked or the writer.

Now dealing with the aftermath of the last chapter and there’s a lot of work to do. Lester still doesn’t know what happened, but he’ll soon be in the middle of the investigation.

Billy Ray is acting like a jerk. Somebody needs to give that boy an attitude adjustment. And somebody will in the near future.

As for what Buck and Marvin are up to, that’s still a secret.

Stay tuned.





The Making of a novel: Part 7


Hit 16,000 words today and I still have a few thousand sitting on the sidelines to plug in when the time comes. Now, I’m thinkin this might be more of a novella than a novel. Time will tell.

Had some major violence in the story today. Can’t tell you about it now. For anybody that should nod off while they’re reading, today’s chapters will wake them up. OMG.

Blurry-eyed and finger weary. Happy hour calls.


The Making of a Novel: Part 6


Yesterday was a good day on the keyboard. A little over 2000 words. I spent an hour wandering around the backyard working out a scene in my head. It would be a replacement for one previously written. I liked the original. It had tension, action,  and a page-turner quality to it. Problem was, it required quite a stretch of the imagination. It lacked credibility.  I hated to give up on it, but did thanks to a suggestion from my son. Now I’m guessing he’ll want a cut of the royalties. Boy, is he in for a major disappointment.

Back in the saddle today. (note the Western lingo there. Something Lester would say.)

The Making of a Novel: Part 5


I wish I knew how to write romance novels. I’d be a rich man. That’s where I’m at now. Billy Ray and his girlfriend, Rio, are making up after an incident that threatened to wreck their relationship. On the flip side, Carmella, Lester’s other deputy who has had eyes on the sheriff for some time, makes some overt moves to win him over. Lester seems to be  softening.

I  guess I could write in some kissy, kissy, smooch, smooch stuff. Nah.

So what I did was skim over it with just a quick peek, like  a voyeur looking through the bathroom window.

Advice to aspiring writers. Never ever start a novel and then begin reading someone like John Sandford. His new novel, Gathering Prey, has opening paragraphs that I can only dream about emulating. Geez.



The Making of a Novel: Part 4


So I went over my words from yesterday expecting the worst. Not too bad though. More than the usual number of omissions along with the expected  horrible punctuation, but all in all, a keeper.

I fixed a Bloody Mary this morning and dove back in. (Does anyone see a pattern here?) I got Buck started on his woodworking projects with a minimal explanation of how he got his supplies. As a former editor once told me, if it doesn’t benefit the story, delete it. It’s a fine line between too much detail and enough that the reader doesn’t say things like, “Huh, how did he drive to Topeka if he doesn’t have a car?”

My problem at the moment is that this stupid WordPress template, the one I’m using as we speak,  keeps starting new line sentences on its own. A curse on you WordPress.

Drive a man to drink.

The Making of a Novel: Part Three.


Saturday. Yes, I write on Saturdays. Also Sundays. Also holidays. Right now, I’m in a groove. One of those rare occasions when the story almost writes itself. The ideas are flowing. Woo hoo.

I’m watching TV and there it is. Completely unrelated to what’s on the screen. Just a simple thought from out of the blue, or the dark, and I’m thinking, “Oh yeah, I can use that.”

It happened again this evening. Only this time on the deck with spooker in hand. The book I was reading was in no way similar to my story, but along came an idea on how to flesh out one of my characters. Full disclosure: Some of my thoughts while under the influence aren’t nearly as brilliant as perceived at the time. There’s that.

So what I did was stagger back to the computer and get it all down. Come the dawn, I’ll read it again. Flush or not to flush? Watch this space.