February of this year is when I finally embraced making writing a major part of my day to day existence.  I had been writing my whole life as a fun hobby and for it’s therapeutic implications but it was time to work, to be better, and to change the world.  I told all of my friends, “I’m getting serious about this thing.”  I accepted I was a baby, a student, a beginner and wore that badge proudly.  I needed to learn from the masters, harness the craft, deal with personal anxiety, figure out what my philosophy toward this new monster would be, and most of all, I needed to always try to be better.  My behavior changed in that I started writing and recording ALL the time.  That was six months ago.  Now I get asked the same question constantly, “How is the writing going?”

The short answer – “Great! Fun! I’m grateful to have reassurance that this is indeed what I am most passionate about.  Things are forever changing.  I’m learning so much, exploring everything freely, and dissolving all limitation.  I’m doing it.”

The long answer –

Things are going fantastic!

At first my intention was to sit in the wings and observe.  I’d watch the blogs of J.C. Hutchins, Scott Sigler, Mur Lafferty and all the other influential authors in the podcast novel space.  All the while I’d work on my masterpiece and blow them all out of the water when it was ready.  After a very short while I figured out this was not going to work.  I was sitting in my hobbit hole scribbling but no one was reading it and I wasn’t learning anything about the craft like I wanted.  So I started searching for low-risk ways of exposure.  This is where the 100 word stories podcast came in and GreatHites.  Weekly contests where people voted for fun on the stories and your story was syndicated in a podcast.  It was simple: if people didn’t like your story they didn’t vote for you, done.  No one screamed at you and no one told you it sucked, it was bliss but also not enough to move forward.

I did that for a while and I started to educate myself more about the writing industry.  I subscribed to Writer’s Digest and every podcast I could find about getting better at this writing thing.

So that is where it started and things evolved way faster than I thought from there.

So, where are we now?

I think an itemized list will be more effective than a long hunk of wordy prose.

  • I write for the 100 word stories podcast every week.  Those are the 100 word stories you see posted here all the time.
  • I got into my first REAL writing group that Justin Lowmaster (SpaceTurtle) got me into.  They are a wonderful group of folks and I love interacting with people who nerd out about this stuff as much as I do.
  • Give Blood and Thanks is officially a podcast now and is in itunes and all that.  It will hit 17,000 words very soon and be in official novella territory.
  • I plunged headfirst into the social media space to rub shoulders and learn from these people I thought I would covet forever.  They are all supportive and great.  I have Twitter and Facebook for now.
  • I have a ton of ideas I’m working on and new ones crop up constantly.  I have enough material right now to be locked in a room for about four years and write a few books.
  • I’m learning the value of 100% transparency.  What I do that a lot of authors (can I say that yet?) don’t is, I post everything!  I post the ugly draft that I read from with all the typos, crumby syntax, constant switching of tenses, and even spelling errors.  If things get pointed out to me I go back and fix it, but I don’t ever dwell too long.  I’m not submitting to magazines, I’m not agent hunting, I’m not submitting to publishers, I’m just learning and sharing with all of you.  I don’t want to be on this journey alone.  I want my friends to know what is going on and the world to watch me grow up.
  • I’m confident that I will be a novelist when the time is right.  Actually, the time will be right in November.  I will be participating in my first official NanoWriMo this year.  I’m extremely excited about it and there is a lot of planning I have yet to do if I am going to reach the 50,000 word finish line in just one month.

I think that covers all the bases for now but things are forever changing in this world so who knows what the next day, week, or month will bring.

Thank you all for your constant supportive words and encouragement.  That stuff really means a lot, truly.

That is how the writing thing is going. 🙂 – Danny

July 30th, 2009

Posted In: Personal, zEverything

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