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In spite of everything — and today there was just a whole lot of “everything” to contend with — I got 1872 words I love.

And found out there were some mysterious circumstances connected with Grandma and her death.

I’m going to leave it at that, except to note that Grandma’s old lawyer tried to make a break for it when Tori started asking questions… and catching him and pinning him down required Tori, Duncan, and some of her better cop skills.

Fun chapter, fun writing day.

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Marketing Tuesday got pre-empted by my need to finish the HTWAN Student-Voted Bonus, Interweaving Multiple Story Threads in Big, Complex Novels.

Which still isn’t done. Today’s image is a screenshot of one of the pages showing the technique for building and then using the threads in a complex novel.

At the speed this is going, it’s going to take me at least another week, and possibly two to finish this bonus.

So everything else I’d planned today got done, but that was small stuff. 

I did not get to start the HTWAN Surprise Bonus, How to Turn a Stand-Alone Novel Into a Series. That’s still pending.

Why did I decide to throw in this bonus as an unasked for, unpromised extra?

  • Because it fits the class.
  • Because it’s one of the most important skills you’ll need to have if you go commercial.
  • Because it’s even more important if you go indie.
  • And because it is ridiculously fun.

This will not teach you how to write the series. That’s a BIG class, and it already exists.

But it will teach you how to find the series you DID NOT know was there found inside most novels — and will also show you how to know when a novel should NOT be made into a series.


OH… Yesterday I got nine chapters of Read-Through Assessment done on my novel Dead Man’s Party. So yesterday was a pretty good day. Long. But good.

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Slightly late re-drawing Ko-Fi winner

Yesterday was a bit more chaotic than usual, and between a number of things coming at me from different directions, and a replay of the damned vertigo, I remembered to let the winner of the redraw for the final prize know, but forgot to announce it.

So… Tiny little drum-roll…

Pomegranate won the drawing for the fifth signed Create a Character Clinic.

Congratulations, and thank you for supporting me on Ko-Fi.

I’ll gather mailing supplies, and get all the prizes out to their winners as quickly as I can.

Ko Fi 2019 06 22 at 8 42 47AMI’ll also note that I’m now 89% of the way to reaching my second goal, which is funding eight hours of fiction writing a week, at $20/hour. This is two hours a day, four days a week, and comes out to $640/month.

How did I come to that hourly rate? Rounded down, it’s what I made working as an RN in 1992, when I hung up my cap and decided to write full time.

It seemed like a good place to start.

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Cold-Engine Fiction

I’ll begin with the fiction writing, which this morning started like a frozen engine with a dead battery. I ended up tinkering with a few worldbuilding questions, looking around in the MC’s newly discovered home library, and reading back through a couple of past chapters to figure out why the fact that Tori’s wandering around in her grandmother’s library full of unreadable books — Grandma was apparently capable of reading languages Granddaughter can’t even identify — mattered today.

When I got the answer to that question, it was still an uphill push, but at least I got to the end of the current chapter, and finished with 1610 words of new fiction I really like.

And a good question to start tomorrow’s chapter.

Discounted How to Write a Novel class

HTWAN cover 700x700Next, a quick reminder on my How to Write a Novel class, which is available with the Splinters Discount for just 10 more days. (The discount ends on June 30th at 11:59 PM ET).

The complete class is finished except for the BIG bonus, Interweaving Multiple Story Threads in Big, Complex Novels, which is bigger than I thought it would, and which I’m still putting together today.

The class goes off sale at the same date and time that the discount ends — June 30th, 2019, 11:59 PM ET.

When I make it available again, which I’ll do later this year for about a week, it will be in Finished First-Draft with Splinters, and the price will be over 20% higher than the current price. I haven’t settled on that price yet. I’m currently still finishing the Big Bonus, and am contemplating adding one other thing suggested by current students to the class. Everyone already in class gets all in-version upgrades and additions for free.

Folks who buy later pay a more to cover the cost of my continuing to update and improve the class.

Finally, redrawing for the final Ko-Fi winner tomorrow

I’m drawing from my list of Ko-Fi supporters  tomorrow morning at 10 AM ET for the last signed special-edition print copy of Create A Character Clinic.

I’ll let the winner know first, then announce the winner here and on my Ko-Fi blog.

If tomorrow’s winner decides to decline the prize, it will sit around until some future grab bag drawing, so I can get the other four packaged and mailed out.

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Had a rough last couple of days due to BPPV, but thanks to the Half-Somersault Maneuver, today I’m okay again.

And I had a great writing day, with a few caveats.

I created a character in the first half of the book that has to go. This character would have (or COULD HAVE) made things too easy for my protagonist, and easy is never good in fiction.

I’d countered the “character knows all the secrets” problem by making the character an obstinate jerk — but obstinate jerks are tiresome to read, especially in series fiction.

If I made the character likable, or even sane (since what my MC is doing is desperately important, and being the obstacle in the way of that would be suicidal), my MC would have no obstacle to discovering all the crap that’s going on.

I have the right main character. My MC is, as all good MCs are, the person who knows the least in this situation… but I have eliminated (in my thoughts and daily provisional outlining — eliminating what’s already written will have to wait for revision) the character who knows everything.

I have substituted this character for two people who each know just pieces of the puzzle. And a library full of books mostly written in languages my MC cannot yet read — a lot of which are not even languages from this world…

Or universe…

It’s a nice little library, but my MC is going to have to figure out her own way through a lot of the crap that’s now falling on her head.

She doesn’t yet realize it, but the most important question she needs to ask now is, “Why did the thing that tried to eat me explode?”

It’s a good question. Because, however, she has a whole lot of little fires igniting all around her, the point where she gets around to asking that one is going to be a long time coming.

I’m really happy. Got 2288 words today, and they felt like they were flying. With the know-it-all gone, the story is back on track. And I’m having a wonderful time figuring out what happens next.

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Not much to say. There’s a lot of stuff going on, I’m stressed out, and while I got words, I don’t like them very much. They’ll stay, but I anticipate that when I come back to this next Wednesday, I’ll be writing around what I did today.

Some days… some days are just like that, and what are you gonna do?

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The first Ko-Fi Rewards: Four of Five Winners have checked in.

FIRST… I’m still waiting to hear from ReadForU.

SECOND… Evil Empire has declined the physical prize due to lack of space (so will get a non-physical prize of comparable value, if desired, and will go back into the drawing pool if no prize is wanted at this time).

So there will be at least one prize that is re-drawn.

One of my three Confirms who wants the prize read the announcement while tired after a very long day at work, and forgot to send a mailing address. All mailings will wait for me to receive that address, plus confirmation or decline from ReadForU, plus redrawing for the either one or two books that are not claimed.

ReadForU has until 11:59 PM ET on June 20th to claim the prize via email. 

I’ll check my email the following morning if I have not heard by then.

Either way, redrawing for the prize or prizes will take place Friday, June 21st at 10 AM ET, and new winner(s) from the pool of funders eligible at the time of the first drawing only will be announced.

Prizes will go out when I have all of them chosen and confirmed, have all mailing addresses, and have them packed and posted to go out — probably by regular mail.

This isn’t the fastest process in the world, but we’ll get there.

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Writing flew today.

I got 3044 words even after yanking stuff out and taking second runs at it.

My protagonist has discovered something about herself that she didn’t know — at the same time that she wakes up in a stranger’s bedroom, sick and confused and with the ragged edges of a memory she cannot quite get to resolve. The last thing she remembers is being outside the library (where she’d been running when her memory blanked out).

Got to use some of the world’s magic today, got to deal with some of the folks from other places.

And I had a hard time stopping, but I still have a bunch of things on my bullet journal list. So on to the next.

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Emails to all five winners have gone out. I haven’t heard back from anyone yet, but should pretty soon.

So the public announcement — the winners are:

  • Evil Empire
  • Karin-H
  • Megan-O
  • ReadForU
  • Arwen-T

Each will receive a signed, dated special-edition print copy of Create A Character Clinic, 4th Edition, when they let me know where they want me to mail it. There will only ever be five of these.

All five winners also get the live Create a Character Clinic class on HollysWritingClasses.com, if they don’t already have it.

Each winner will have the opportunity to pass on this prize to be put back in the pool for later drawings. If that happens, I will re-draw from my remaining pool of funders.

Reminder that family, friends, and HWC staff are ineligible to win prizes.

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You still have a few days to add yourself to the drawing.

For folks already funding me on Ko-Fi, I have the email address you used for Ko-Fi and your name already entered in the drawing — both folks funding me through Ko-Fi with one-time donations and folks funding by subscription are eligible for the drawing.

The prizes THIS time are five signed proof print copies of the new Fourth Edition of Create a Character Clinic, and winners will be chosen at random from all of those who are eligible.

The rules and eligibility requirements are all here.

And folks who fund me, either with a one-time donation or by setting up a subscription before 11:59 PM ET, WEDNESDAY, JUNE 12th, will be added to this drawing when I come in to work on Thursday morning.

(Folks who fund later than that will be eligible for the next and all future prizes, but not this one).

I’ll announce the winners on blog posts here and on my Ko-Fi page AFTER I have emailed each winner personally.

Folks who don’t want a print copy of Character Clinic can contact me. If you’re quick, I can re-draw for your prize, and you can wait for whatever I offer next. (I’m considering alternating between fiction and non-fiction prizes.)

So figure I’ll make the PUBLIC announcement around noon-ish Eastern Time on Thursday.

Thanks to each of you who’s funding my fiction writing time, and good luck.

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