Category Archives: Writing

Pirate My Book

webSeriously–do it.

Downloading books for free is wrong, right? It devalues books and doesn’t give an author his/her due for their work, right?

Not always. I want my name out there, but the biggest ebook site in the world won’t let me give it away (without me waiting for them to price match), so here it is. You can download it as a pdf from Slideshare. Or you can get it as an ebook on Smashwords.

It’s a collection of flash fiction that I posted on this site before anyway.

Enjoy! Let me know what you think.

 

 

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Writing/Running Mix

382058_623672603320_333651482_nPeople have asked me how in the world I find time to train for half-marathons, marathons, and write novels, all in my spare time.

Quick answer: Like I’ve mentioned in a previous blog post, you don’t find time for anything, you make time.

Not so quick answer: Because they feed off of each other.

Huh?

Feed off each other?

Both activities take hours every week. Hours that I could be spending watching the latest episodes of Real Housewives of Topeka, Kansas—or something like that.

Running and writing feed off one another for a few simple, but critical reasons. If you can sit down and write a novel in a few months, you have the discipline to train for a ten-mile run in the same span of time.

1. Both take a ridiculous amount of patience.

Writing a novel takes a ton of patience. Despite popular opinion, you can’t write a good novel in a weekend. You can’t write a good novel in a week. Hell, sorry NaNoWriMo, but you can’t in a month either. A novel is a block of stone you have to chip away at. You can get a few chunks of it in a few heavy swings, but you’ll often be overwhelmed and burnt out. It’s best to take your time and settle into your work. Take the right amount of time to edit and revise. That’s the most important part of writing anyway.

Distance running is the same thing. You can’t go out and run ten miles your first day out. You may be able to sprint a quarter mile and knockout a large chunk quickly, but that will tire you out. Developing the skills for distance running helps me sit down in front of the computer and do the work I need to before I start my day job every day.

2. Physical exertion breeds creativity.

There may be a study that proves this. On the contrary, there may be a study that says this statement is completely full of shit. But I can’t count how many great writing ideas I’ve had in the middle of a long, gut-checking run.

I feel that my best ideas come when I’m struggling to keep my body moving forward. I don’t know if this is because I’m not trying to think of creative ideas—I’m just trying not to pass out. “Light Bulb Moments” seem to happen when you’re focusing somewhere else.

3. Running and reading work well together.

I know what you’re thinking.

“Ummmm … Nope! You can’t run with a book in your hand.”

I smile at you. I look to the smart phone you’re holding in your hand, and politely ask you if you’ve ever heard of audible.

You tell me that reading audio books isn’t reading at all.

I tell you that you’re full of shit. The purpose of any writing is to convey information. Words put a picture in your head, and make you imagine what the book says. As Stephen King says, it’s a version of telepathy. Whether you consume the words with your eyes or ears, it doesn’t really matter much, does it? Stephen King also said that if you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time or skills to write. Why not read while improving your body?

4. They both teach you how to ‘junk punch’ self-doubt.

Every time I lace up my running shoes, I doubt that I’ll be able to reach my goal for the day. Likewise, when I sit in front of the computer, I doubt that I’ll type fast enough to reach my daily 1,000-word count before I have to go to work. I doubt my words will resonate with my desired audience. I don’t think I’ll run any faster on the trail than I ran two months ago.

Nearly every time I punch that doubt in the face and break through all doubts. It’s freeing. The next time I open my word processor or step out of my front door with my camel pack on, I do so with more confidence. Doing either activity enables me to believe in myself that much more the next time. There’s nothing better than working with confidence.

That’s the main thing these two activities bring into my life—self confidence. No amount of time and money can buy that.

Free, Fast, and Fearless – Three Fs to Accomplishing Anything

20130720_103323You can catch me running on the trails in the greater Denver area. I’ll run past you, blasting an audiobook so loud that you’ll be able to hear the narration yourself for a few seconds. You might also see me sitting in a coffee shop, writing until my fingers go numb during a marathon two-hour writing session (marathon for me at least).
I’ve been horrible at updating this site in 2014—no excuses from me. Sure, I’ve been uber productive in exceeding my fiction word count goal to this point, but there’s still no excuse.
Free, Fast, and Fearless became my focus in 2014. Running trails is freeing. Writing books and stories—even more so at times. Things have been going fast too. I feel fast on the trails, and I write one thousand words in thirty-five minutes of writing. Fearless is writing one thousand words, not knowing if what you’re writing is a steaming pile of shit not worth reading. Fearless is hanging in there the first three miles of a ten-mile run, enduring the pain (that everyone feels, believe it or not), in order to feel the euphoria that eventually comes out of finishing ten miles faster than you ever have. Continue reading Free, Fast, and Fearless – Three Fs to Accomplishing Anything

Kindle Unlimited

Amazon is attempting to step into the waters of subscription-based book downloads. Personally, I love it.

Kindle Unlimited gives avid readers the opportunity to get access to thousands of titles in both ebook, and audiobook format. I love it as a reader because it gives me the freedom to try out many authors I wouldn’t usually pay to read, unless I know I’m getting a great book. Continue reading Kindle Unlimited

Flash Fiction Thursday

So, it’s been awhile since I’ve posted on here. Why? Because I’ve been crazy busy with my 2014 writing goal of 300,000 words. I have a great head start now (41,000), so I’ll try to keep up with this a little more.

I did another one of Chuck Wendig’s flash fiction challenges on terrible minds:  http://terribleminds.com/ramble/2014/01/31/flash-fiction-challenge-a-drink-with-a-story-a-story-with-a-drink/

Basically, the job is to make up an original cocktail, use its name for your story title, and explain how to make it in the story. Mine is called The Caveman

Enjoy! Continue reading Flash Fiction Thursday