Let’s Talk About Writing

The URL above is a link to my story “The Case of the Missing Reechie.” If is the first case in my detective series “Private Investigation Team.” Its just a little gift for checking out my blog. There will be more links in the future.

Good day everyone.  Today I would like to talk about writing.  I love to write.  I just get these stories in my head and I have to get them out. I have written six novels and I’m working on my seventh.  I have written a large number of short stories, some poems, and a novella. Most of the time I’m not sure what inspires me. There are two times where I can point to exactly what sparked a story idea. The first was the song, “How’s It Goina to Be” by Third Eye Blind. The line, “How’s it gonna be when you don’t know me anymore,” made me wonder what it would be like if everyone you knew, including your wife, didn’t know who you were. That was the inspiration for “The Long Journey Home.” The second inspiration came when Cathy and I were having dinner in a steakhouse called Bugaboo Creek. It had classic pioneer type décor and it made me wonder if modern people could be pioneers. That sparked an idea of how to put modern people in a position to start a colony on a new world and that’s when “Pioneers” was born.

I write fiction generally, though I spent a few years contributing articles to a site called Hubpages.  I have been writing for almost thirty years.  I guess I always wanted to write but it took me that long to get started.  If someone tells me that they have a story that they want to write I tell them to just start writing.  Yes I know it would be far better if a person was formally educated and went through proper steps in developing a story, but nothing happens if a person doesn’t start.  If some idea is in my head I want to get it into my computer and see what it looks like.  Many ideas die after a page for two but those files are still floating around in my computer.  Recently I went back to a thirty year old idea, turned it completely around, and started a new story with it.  It’s a novel I’m working on now, we’ll see how far it goes.

I guess I should be clear.  I write for the enjoyment of writing.  I do hope that hordes of people will read my work and find it worth their time.  As I said in my last post, I have made a resolution to make more people aware of my stories.  But I am not writing for a living.  People who write for a living must approach their working differently.  They must make sure their writing is marketable and that is contains all of the keywords that will lead to success.  This is where education, both formal and what is learned online, comes in.  There is nothing better than being educated when you must make a living.

I  am retired.  Cathy and I spent our forty odd years working and saving and now we’re done with that.  I write for pleasure.  It comes out of my head and into my computer.  I do understand how to create a proper story and I have developed a style that I am comfortable with over the years.  I like dialog driven stories where there is minimal narration and the reader finds out what is going on from the characters.  This sometimes generates a lot of dialog but I think it’s better that way.  Cathy says that there is too much dialog now and then.  I am now trying to write in the first person.  I did this with a few short stories in my detective series, “Private Investigation Team,” but this is the first time I’m trying it in a novel.  This is a departure from the style I am accustom to but I guess I have to branch out now and then.

One thing I realized about this approach is that you end up with a lot more words on one page.  In first person the main character is the narrator and he or she can explain a lot of what is going on in direct narration.  Dialog, in most cases, requires back and forth banter with means very short paragraphs and fewer words on one page.  That’s something to think about when you plan to do print on demand.  The more pages needed the higher the price to print the book. I think about this after writing a three hundred and thirty-one page book.

I like to get a few plot lines going and see how well I can blend them together.  I think one of my weaknesses is my inability to throw in a good surprising twist.  I need to work in that more.  Next time I’ll talk about science fiction.  It is the genre I work in most and it has its advantages and some drawbacks.


Pete is a retired software developer, a writer, and a martial arts instructor. He lives in Maryland with his wife Cathy and they are enjoying their retirement. Pete is the author of four novels, "The Teacher", 500 Years from Home", and "The Long Journey Home" are available at Lulu.com; and "Pioneers" in available at the Kindle Book Store.

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One comment on “Let’s Talk About Writing
  1. […] Let’s Talk About Writing […]

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