Ten personal rules of writing.

What's worse: Getting a rejection--or never hearing back?

I hate to say it, but I think the rejection is worse. The never hearing back allows you to decompress. The uncertainty doesn't really matter, not if you are going to keep on writing anyway.

The current book is a little soft. I'm not digging into it deeply, but that is kind of on purpose. I needed something light to write, something I could just dish out every day. Even if I only write 1000 words a day for the rest of the year, this book would come in at over 70K words. I'll miss a few days because of the holidays, no doubt, but I rarely only write 1000 words.

Just another story to set into the book bank.

At some point I really need to go back to the book bank and start finishing stuff up.

The real project will be next year. The new thriller. I'm throwing two ideas for books together, trying to use the strongest character, doing it in third person, and I will be trying at least to have it somewhat outlined before I start. I really think the book would benefit if I can avoid flailing around for the first 50 pages and really start the story where it needs to start.

I want to really get this book right. Of course, that is a formula for writer's block, so I have to be careful. I have a whole bookshelf full of books about gold mining, which seems to be a reoccurring element in my books, and it might help to read them.

This I know:

1.) Research always helps. It give the story telling detail and often sparks ideas.

2.) I can't meander the first 50 pages again before the story takes off. I need to start where the story takes off.

3.) I need a strong central character. I don't like Duncan stand-ins, they feel amorphous to me, whereas specific strong personalities other than myself are much more fun to write and tend to be stronger.

4.) I should write in 3rd person. 1st person is very attractive and easy to write, but it's hard to gain any real depth, and besides I like have numerous POV characters.

5.) I like numerous POV characters, but I need to set a limit. I think no more than 4 or 5, if I can help it.

6.) I need to write the book to the end quickly, and then go back and fill in with perhaps more characters and elements.

7.) Note taking wouldn't be out of bounds. I often have ideas while writing, then think I'll remember them, and only later when I'm finished will I realize that I left out something that would have been nice to have.

8.) Rewrites are incredibly important. They make a decent story a good story.

9.) The more time I have between rewrites, the more perspective and the more willing to change.

10.) I shouldn't second-guess myself or let others critique the 1st draft. Finish it, and only then make changes.