I'm a writer. There, I've admitted it. I wonder if there's a 12-Step program for folks like me...

Most of this blog will be about writing for a living. Or maybe about trying to earn a living as a writer. Or maybe about trying to have a life while you write.

And maybe I'll be able to avoid the driving temptation to write about politics. But I'm not very good around temptation, so all I can promise is that I'll try to avoid writing about politics.

But I will write about the software I use, and the software I try out, and what I think about it. I actually spent lots of years in software testing - as a tester and as a manager of testing departments. I actually started work in software development in 1971, so I have a bit of experience with computers to back up what I have to say on this subject.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Download “Lonesome Cove” for Free (Kindle only) and a bit of blather


My latest novel, "Lonesome Cove" will be FREE for download to your Kindle (or Kindle Reader on your PC or handheld device) on June 13 & 14. 


Here's the link:



Here’s the back text:

Terry Rankin isn’t so sure about his new client, Gianni Lupo. Gianni is an old man, just released from prison after serving the full twenty-five years of a Life sentence for a double murder in Miami. But Terry figures the man’s paid for his crime and now he’ll spend his declining years tottering around his home on Sanibel Island. Terry isn’t sure why Lupo feels the need for armed bodyguards, but what can go wrong? After all, it’s been twenty-five years.

And three tons of gold is still missing…

Please please please be sure to pass this info on to everyone you know, and please be sure to tell them to post a review of the novel once they finish reading it. That is VERY important! Authors live or die on reader reviews.

Be sure to verify that the Kindle purchase price is $0.00 before clicking on the Buy button!

The next bit is targeted toward new authors mostly, but anyone who writes in the English language should probably pay heed as well.

I know for a fact that most Americans are not taught spelling and punctuation anywhere close to the standards that I suffered through as a  child. However, that is NO excuse for anyone who aspires to earn a living as a writer in his or her native language.

Grammar, spelling and punctuation make or break a good story.

Tossing in commas helter-skelter is NOT the way it is done, ladies and gentlemen. Commas are mainly used to separate phrases within a sentence. Most sentences consist of one or two phrases. Not three or four or five. One cannot use a comma where a semi-colon belongs, and one should never, ever forget that quotation marks always travel in pairs. There are no bachelor (or bachelorette) quote marks to be found in any language with which I am familiar (and I have a working familiarity with several languages). Quotation marks belong at the beginning of a bit of dialogue and at the end.

You may not ever mix dialogue from two or more people in a single paragraph; it is not the done thing. Each character’s dialogue deserves its very own paragraph.

DO NOT EVER trust yourself to edit your own writing. EVER. Read your work aloud to yourself BEFORE you allow anyone else to see it and make what corrections you can BEFORE you turn it over to an English teacher or to someone in your writer’s group or a few fans or friend who have volunteered to help you out, but do not EVER think you can do a thorough job of editing yourself.


If you ever hope to make it as a commercial author (as opposed to living as an “Artist”) you NEED to find someone who has the patience and the experience to help you edit your stuff for spelling, grammar and punctuation (not to mention continuity). You really need a professional Editor, but who can afford such luxuries? Get a good friend or a few great fans to help you out, and be sure to thank them by name in your Acknowledgements section.

I write all of this not be bore you to tears but to emphasize just how incredibly important it is to your success as an author. Bad spelling, incorrect usage of terms and really lousy punctuation will destroy the reader’s ability to suspend his (or her) disbelief so they can become involved in your characters and your story line.

Such errors in the proper use of language will ruin your ability to market your material to a wide audience, and that will spell the end to your brief (very brief) writing career.

If it takes you a year or two years to write your novel, isn’t worth another six months’ effort to have a few good people help you to polish it up with a bit of editing before you invest a penny in publishing it???

Give yourself a break, folks. Don’t insult your manuscript; don’t make a mockery of your dreams with shoddy and incomplete work. Your job as a writer isn’t done until the editor says it’s done. And if you don’t have an editor you’d better have a few friends who know more about the English language than you do.

You owe that much to yourself and your future, at least.

No comments:

Post a Comment