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All Things Writing

Author: Bryan the Writer

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Do you dream of one day writing your own book? Do you already a write, edit, or publish? Maybe just a reader who wants to know more about how the writing gets done or just like books in general? Come take a ride with me through the world of writing. I will share my advice, tips and tricks, insight, funny stories, and interviews with people in the business. -Bryan the Writer
43 Episodes
Welcome to the show! So, what the heck is a mystery? I would love to claim to have come up with all of this stuff myself, but I didn't. Valerie Peterson wrote a wonderful article on the topic. So good, in fact that I would have a hard time improving on it. So, instead of doing that, I am going to follow her outline closely and add my own commentary. But You Can Read The Article HereI think we can all agree that ultimately when we write or read a Mystery the most important element of that work is having a question or a puzzle we are trying to solve. The antagonist (and in some cases a protagonist) can be the person trying to solve a mystery.Tradition has had it in the past that the protagonist is a detective or private investigator of some sort. By the way, we make the mistake of calling Sherlock Holmes a detective when we discuss him. He would correct you and tell you that he is a consulting detective. But those are not the only types of protagonists we have. It is not uncommon for regular old people to become the protagonists involved in solving a mystery. Remind me when we get to the topic of cozy mysteries to tell you a story about one of my favorite cozy mystery novellas. As Valerie would remind us in her article, the mystery can include easily a theft or kidnapping. Lies, deceptions, and red-herrings (false clues) and these add to the story. One of the things that I hate in a mystery is if I have figured it out in the first chapter. That is just wrong. Give me something to go off of. Make me thing. The best books are ones that make you lay in bed wondering about that next page and what is going to happen to the characters.Mysteries fall into a few general categories. Hard-boiledSoft-Boiled Cozy Mysteries ProceduralsCriminal FictionAnd lost of sub categoriesVictoria does, in her article, make a few other distinctions, but I will keep my distinctions truncated. There were a few on here list that I would not necessarily agree with, but I understand why she put them on there.I also mention the book, Death is Long Overdue, by Amy E. Lilly. If you want to check out her book, see it here! Remember that next week there will be no show, but then I will come back with a couple of new shows. I want to do another show like this where I dissect, pun intended, horror novels and what the different types are.Then, I want to do a deep dive into my Dramatic Dead series and talk about them a bit.At any rate, thank you for spending some time with me. This is Bryan the writer, for all things writing, signing off.Buzzsprout - Let's get your podcast launched! Start for FREEDisclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase, I may receive a commission at no extra cost to you.Support the show (
As a reminder, if there is any topic you want me to cover on the show, I am more than happy to entertain requests. Just drop me a line at show, thanks to you all, is going to smash, or will nearly smash a thousand downloads in the month of February or get really close. Most of you are listening to me on iheart radio. Love iheart radio, and no they did not pay me to say that. I actually do listen to iheart radio as well as SyriusXM when I listen to tunes or podcasts.Do you like vampires? Of course you do, who doesn't. Okay, other than Dr. von Helsing. But, I promise you that most of the world does, if the gazillions of dollars that has been spent on the genre is any indication.The vampire novel I am writing is called, The App. It is, naturally, a working title, subject to change, but that is what I am going with for now since calling it That One Book I am Working On, just seems silly.In todays show I am going to dive into The App and talk about the main characters a bit. Where they came from, and why I wrote them the way I wrote them. Hope you enjoy this week's episode of All Things Writing!This week, in addition to talking about the book I am working on right now, in depth as it turned out, I am also thanking the good people of Old Ox Brewery. Come on out and visit their locations in Ashburn or Middleburg, Virginia.As always, any donations to the program are greatly appreciated! Support the show (
Hey everyone and welcome to this, our fourth show of the season. I want to thank all of you for joining me today.Welcome to a cold and snowy day out here in Northern Virginia (at least when I recorded this).On this episode I give you a quick update on what is going on in the life of Bryan the Writer and then I launch into a discussion about ISBN. Not necessarily what it is, but where did it come from in the first place.You know the company as R.R. Bowker. But do you know who R.R. Bowker was? Did you know there was a connection between R.R. Bowker and the founder of the Dewy Decimal System? No, well, take a listen and find out about something we take for granted. - Let's get your podcast launched! Start for FREEDisclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase, I may receive a commission at no extra cost to you.Support the show (
I know copyright doesn't sound like and interesting topic for a podcast. But there is more than meets the eye in terms of history where copyright is concerned. Plus you get to hear me do my best British accent. For more info about copyright and its implications, check out these resources.Wikipedia has, at least as of this recording, a pretty good page on the issue. U.S. Copyright office has an excellent page dedicated to the history as it pertains to U.S. law. You can also find the current version of Title 17, which I reference in the show. is the site where you can see The Treaty of Anne. It is worth reading if you really want to see where we get some of our legal concepts of what copyright should look like. always, thank you for joining me! If you would like more information on how you can be a show sponsor, or just want to reach out and say hello. Click here and send me a message. Support the show (
Welcome to 2021! My plan this year is to do 35 shows in 2021. This first show really is a kind of reintroduction to me. However, that doesn't take very long so I am going to spend more time discussing how to plan out your writing year.Well, if you are new to the show, I would encourage you to go back and listen to the shows I did last year. There are some amazing shows, with some great interviews. But, in the meantime, let me re-introduce myself. I am Bryan Nowak. I am the author of the novels No Name, The Dramatic Dead, The Reverent Dead, Dean Cordaine and the Diamond Studded Legs Matter, and The Fallen Oath Matter, Riapoke, Crimson Tassels, The Bagorian Chronicles, and I also took part in the anthology, Bizarre: 14 Horror Stories.I am primarily a horror writer, but I also work in the closely related genre of mystery and I dabble in some science fiction. I have been writing for over seven years, pretty much non-stop and I have been podcasting for a year.I want you to reach out to me with your questions and suggestions. Hit me up at your Year:Have an honest assessment of where you are at in your writing journeySet honest goals with yourselfPull out a calendar and set benchmarks for yourself or buy a planner like this one that I recommendFigure out what you want to get our of the writing year and back plan from thereDecide how you want to a achieve that goalHave an honest discussion about the physical and temporal limitations in your lifeBe realistic with yourself. For example, if you are a stay-at-home parent of four, carving out precious time will be hard. If you work 50 hours a week to support that same size family, then it will also be hard.You will notice I said hard, but not impossible. Figure out when you can put your butt into a seat and write. It may take an honest talk with your spouse about making sure those kids stay in the basement while you write. You may only find ten minutes a day to write. Then, guess what? Write the hell out of those ten minutes. It isn’t how many words you can write that matter. It is how consistently you can commit to that time.So, that is the first episode of All Things Writing in season two (the first of 2021). Remember to tune in next week to hear my book review of Michael Thompson’s “World of the Orb”. I am a fan and friend of Michael’s and he has been on the show. I totally want to get him on again to talk about the book, but we will have to figure that out.Plus, next week, I want to revisit the idea of an editing process and how to negotiate those waters without making yourself nutty. And yes, you can make yourself nutz.Thanks again for hanging out with us today on All Things Writing. We will see you next week. Until then, this is Bryan the writer, signing off.Buzzsprout - Let's get your podcast launched! Start for FREEDisclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase, I may receive a commission at no extra cost to you.Support the show (
Welcome and Merry Christmas!As you undoubtedly know by now, this is my favorite time of the year. I love the decorations, the lights, I love the stories. I know I mentioned my love of A Christmas story, but what you may not know is that I have a favorite Christmas poem. I love it so much in fact that this week I am dedicating a whole show to it.Not only is it an amazing poem, but it is also one of the oldest and most popular Christmas poems ever written. The poem, originally titled, “A Visit from St. Nicholas”, now more popularly called “Twas the Night Begore Christmas” was written in the early 19th century. Considerable controversy surrounded the authorship for many years. It is believed that either Clement Clark Moore or Henry Livingston, Jr. were the authors. Clement Clarke Moore lived between 1779 and 1863. A writer and American Professor of Oriental and Greek Literature, he also taught Divinity and Biblical Learning, in New York City. He rose to prominence and eventually donated the land which would become a seminary, which continues at Chelsea Square. It is believed that Professor Moore wrote the poem for his children. Initially he didn’t want to publish it as he was afraid of his reputation as a scholar. As the story has it, he eventually did publish the story anonymously on Dec. 23, 1823 in the Troy Sentinel newspaper in upstate New York.Henry Livingston Jr., although there is really no evidence he claimed authorship of the piece during his life time, is also credited with writing the piece.Henry Livingston Jr., was a revolutionary war soldier and late became a poet. His children had claimed that the poem, “A visit from St. Nicholas”, was something they remember their father reading them a number of years earlier.One of the descendants claimed to have had the original story, with cross outs, in the text, but that was destroyed in a house fire in Wisconsin. So, there is no way to authenticate his story.The two men didn’t know eachtoher, although one of the Livingston relatives did marry a relative of Moore’s. There is no evidence Moore could have gotten a copy from Livingston or vice verse.Based on the facts surrounding this strange case of who is the real author, I would argue that likely Professor Moore is the author. However, there is one other fact you may want to know. A fairly recent study of the grammatical structure of the piece and the writings of both men suggest that Livingston may have been the actual author.What is also tantalizing is that in the original version of the poem, what we commonly name the reindeer, “Donner and Blitzen”, are spelled “Dunder and Blixem”. Which is Dutch. Livingston was Dutch, while Moore was not. Moore did not speak Dutch either.So, maybe I change my vote to Livingston?I am not going to wade farther into this controversy. But I think it is fascinating that after all these years there are still some mysteries out there which cannot be solved objectively. And isn’t that what a good story is? A mystery?For when we pick up a book, short story, or a poem, there is a quickening of our heartbeat, a more rapid movement of our blood, a tingle on our skin as we have no idea how that story is going to end. That is what good writing does for us. It provides mystery.As the poem ends, Happy Christmas to All, and to All a Goodnight!Support the show (
Welcome to another special holiday edition of All Things Writing. This week I have another special guest with me to spread the joy of the season. I have invited Samantha Parish, the author of Inglorious Ink to join me to talk about the book and anything else she is working on.We are going to talk about:How she got into the tattoo theme of her work?Going to, of course, ask her to tell us about her book?How does she describe her writing style? What is her process like?What is she working on now? Will we see another in the same series or are you working on other storylines.Naturally I am going to ask about her holiday traditions and what she is excited about this year.And of course, where we can find her work and find out more about Samantha Parish?Vocal - - - you know me, we are going to talk about all kinds of other things. Take a listen!-Bryan the WriterSupport the show (
What would be the holidays without our favorite holiday movies? These movies hold a special place in my heart, and they still pretty much make up a cornerstone of my Christmas traditions, and some of the traditions that I’ve imparted to my children.It’s a Wonderful Life came on television seemingly on every station at least once a day. At any given moment, you could easily find a station that was running that movie. To me it still represents one of the great holiday movies of all time.This idea that your life, no matter how small you think it is, represents an integral part interlocked with all the lives around you is a tale as old as time. And it’s a central theme that I’ve used in writing before. No matter how insignificant you think you are, you leave a fingerprint on everyone you talk to, email, or associate with in any way. You are a piece of them, and they are a piece of you. Either of those ingredients suddenly go missing from the equation, the result isn’t right.Miracle on 34th Street Most people don’t know this, but the version with Natalie Wood and Maureen O’Hara was not the original version. But it is perhaps the most famous. For me one of the things that stands out is the central character of Santa Claus, played by Edmund Gwenn, and this willing suspension of reality that Santa Claus truly was there with them. He is very much what I believe Santa Claus would be like in the real world. I especially like the fact that when he runs into his troubles at the department store, after striking Mr. Sawyer on the head, he displays a certain type of despair over the situation. He feels like the world doesn’t need him anymore, or perhaps it’s more likely that the world has just simply discarded him. A feeling I think we’re all too familiar with sometimes in our lives today. He needed to be reminded, just like we have to sometimes, that we are valuable and loved.A Christmas CarolI have seen about 100 different versions of the story. Anywhere from stage productions, some of them better than others, to television adaptations to include Bill Murray’s, Scrooged. The two stage performances that stand out for me are the ones which involve my family.But as a child the version which I saw on TV most often, and what I would come to understand as one of the more true to the original work when seen on television is A Christmas Carol starring George C. Scott. He is, at least for me, the quintessential Scrooge. The portrayal is cold, mean, and unforgiving. A man whose heart is so hardened and so chilling that the only thing that could change him is the visit of four specters.I think the most poignant part of A Christmas Carol is this idea that the spirit of Christmas is something that shouldn’t exist in us just one day a year. The idea of charity, humanity, love, and an open heart are ideas we should have all year long. But the movie also reminds us that being able to open our hearts in such a way is a hard thing to do.A Christmas Story Yes, you’ll shoot your eye out. Any of you have seen videos of my renovated office know that behind me, on the wall, is an official Daisy red Ryder BB gun, 80th anniversary edition. And yes, it’s one of my favorite presents ever.The movie is set in Hammond Indiana, which is about 20 minutes away from where I grew up. While the year in which the movie takes place is certainly earlier than when I was growing up, there’s a lot of symbology and references that are very specific to those of us that grew up in that Chicago metro area.Thanks for spending time with some of my favorite memories. In case I haven’t said it, happy holidays to you and yours. -Bryan the writerSupport the show (
I am super excited about this time of year. I have to tell you that the holidays are easily my favorite time of the year. Ever since I was a kid I loved all of it. The smells, the sights, my grandparents spoiling us kids to death. It was a great time.I know what you are going to say and you would be right, 2020 is not that kind of year, but I say bully to you and am going to try and get back some of that holiday spirit with holiday themed shows until the end of the year because … well I can. It is my podcast. And, since it is my podcast I can do cool things like bring in my next guest who has graciously offered to join me today. So, grab yourself a cup of hot cocoa with a peppermint stick in it and lets welcome my next guest, Erin Mackey.Questions we are going to dive into in this episode:How did you get into writing? What was your motivation?What is the magic sauce which keeps kids, and sometimes parents, into what you write?I know I said this is holiday themed, but there are plenty of great ghoulish stories which surround the whole idea of the holidays. So, hear me out. Being a horror writer, I love these kinds of works. What was the driving force behind that project?What were your favorite holiday stories growing up? What is your favorite thing about writing? What is your greatest reward?Lets talk traditions.Want to know more about Erin Mackey? Check her out at the following links!Amazon: Website: about a podcast? the show (
The show this week has to do with an experience I had recently which, while not intending to be writing focused, has profound implications for me and my fellow writers. So, sit back and enjoy the show. This one is going to be deep.Never before have we faced a situation where four generations simultaneously have access to social media networks that allow them to reach across the world instantaneously. While this sounds like it would be a good thing, it poses some very interesting problems for writers.Question, how do you reach those different audiences?  Even at a more basic level, how do you write books which are going to appeal to those different demographics. The answer that question is that you’re really not.But the differences are not necessarily just one of size. The baby boomer generation was told early on that if they stuck with their jobs, at retirement that job would take care of them. My generation, Generation X, was told that we couldn’t rely on our jobs and therefore we needed be prepared for layoffs at any moment and we would have to rely on Social Security. Paradoxically, at the same time, we were being told that Social Security was in trouble and might not exist when we were ready to retire.The millennials coined the phrase move on to move up. They look at a job, not necessarily as a career in one company, but a career path which may actually include several different companies. Generation Z, will likely have a very similar type of outlook, while in some ways they have a lot in common with the GenXers.In terms of writing, a millennial reader is not necessarily going to understand if a character in a book remains committed to one company, or one organization for their entire lives. That character may not seem real to them. It’s also true that a Gen Xer is likely going to look at a character in a book which moves from job to job to job as unfocused and unreliable. Where a millennial would look at that character and consider that really the norm. Because remember, “move on to move up.”Millennial’s were always taught that there is a world which is in constant peril. They are all in on social justice, and what they see is a balancing out of fundamental rights. This means that they’re going to generally be attracted to books and movies which have a social undertone. There is a huge market for works with a social message behind them which may have been completely lost or just seem preachy to readers even ten years ago.For me this is especially difficult because I don’t generally have a social undertone in my work. I write purely to entertain, an idea that would seem strange to a millennial, but be perfectly at home with the baby boomer. A Gen X or would also see it in the same way, but would be likely more attracted to books which show a truly bad antagonist if I write that antagonist as big business.A millennial or generation Z member likely would see an evil antagonist more in terms of the moral relativity which can spring from trying to understand that antagonist’s point of view.I do want to stop here and just say that I don’t necessarily see anything bad or good in any of this. It’s just different ways of looking at the world. And again, the issue is that all of these generations exist in the exact same time and space. It makes writing to maximum appeal especially difficult. Write to one and you alienate the others. Try to write to all of them and you may lose any chance to hook them.It isn't easy, but you can do it as long as you keep in mind how different generations are going to see your writing.Thanks for listening!Support the show (
Michael Thompson and I have been friends for a few years now. He is a multi talented author whose work I instantly took a liking to. So, this week, on All Things Writing, I sit down with him and we talk about tons of things! There may even be a couple of exclusive revelations in this weeks show. So, sit back and enjoy as we talk about, 1) What got you started in writing?2) You are a huge fan of the whimsical. What pushed you toward that?3) What you think is the next great adventure for us authors out there? What’s next f or us as far as being authors?4) Are there areas of literature you want to explore but haven’t?5)  What would you say is the biggest shock you have had as an author?And I am serious, we went off script at a bunch of points. Check it out. While you are listening, hop over to his website. Or you can find him on Amazon at; the show (
Welcome to this week’s show and welcome to Halloween in a year that has been definitely one of the annals of human history. This year I thought maybe it might be kind of fun to inject a little Poe back into everyone’s life. So instead of doing something about writing, I thought it could be fun to recite a couple of my favorite works by Edgar Allen Poe. Edgar Allen Poe, or Poe as we call him, was born on January 18th 1809 in Boston. In 1811, the family moved to Richmond, Virginia and forever he would be associated with that city. As a matter of fact, if you go to Richmond Virginia today you can visit the Poe museum. In 1826 he began his studies at the University of Virginia where he studied ancient and modern languages. He would eventually join the Army and you can see a small display to him at the casemate museum at Fort Monroe. You can visit the entire fort today. I remember having to go the Fort Monroe when it was still an active installation.Poe wrote and had several positions in magazines and literary journals. Always having issues with gambling, he was constantly in debt. Though he still managed to amass quite a stable of literary pieces while alive. On October 7th 1849, he passed away. And although many people had provided accounts of his last days, no one is really sure how he died.If you ask me what pieces of his work I love the best, I would have to tell you the poem the bells and the story, A Cask of Amontillado are my favorite.The Bells is one of his works which was not published in his lifetime. Published in November of 1849 (one month after his passing), it is evocative of the movement through life. Each of the stanzas gets longer until the reader gets to the final tolling of the bells, so to speak.Speaking of bells, did you catch the bells at the end of The Cask of Amontillado? They are jingling on the hat of a jester which is supposed to be a source of merriment. You have to ask yourself if the bells were Fortunato’s true character or was it just a disguise and Montresor murdered someone who did him little harm? Speaking of symbols, the Cask of Amontillado certainly has tons of it. Published in 1846 in the magazine Godey's Lady's Book, it is dripping with irony. It chronicles the murderous intentions of Senior Montresor and his adversary, Fortunato. Fortunato was said to have caused him a thousand insults. Thank you very much for listening. Happy Halloween everyone! This is Bryan the Writer, signing off.Support the show (
Why do we like horror? One of my earliest memories I had was watching King Kong on the big screen at a local theater. I remember being scared. This is probably the first time I remember being scared while watching something fictional.I was very young, but later on it would lead me to wonder why it was that something that didn’t really exist could scare me. Consider fear. It’s a natural reaction which hinges on self-preservation. But when you’re watching a movie, it should be clear to your brain that what is happening on the screen couldn’t actually hurt you. And still, you react to it.For example, every year there’s a new crop of movies which involves a ghost in one way or another. As children we love to watch Scooby Doo which inevitably includes some old guy wearing a ghost costume. We love to go to haunted houses where we are literally paying for someone else to scare us. And yet we know those ghosts are not real.I’m fond of saying that horror is really an umbrella. A lot of people get the wrong impression that horror is what they see on the big screen. They equate the term to Jason Voorhees or Michael Myers. I do think that Hollywood has been disingenuous to the greater world of horror in that it focuses so much on the intense visual aspects of gore. To me that’s kind of lazy. It also cuts off an entire part of horror that is wonderful. My favorite kind of horror is the horror that just unsettles the reader.It doesn’t have to be awash in blood and that’s the best kind of horror to me. In my book Crimson Tassels, there is a good amount of blood. However, it’s not so much blood that you’re going to focus on that. It’s the story line that really matters. I want you to feel one of the main characters descending into a sort of insanity brought on by the malevolent actions of another. Honestly, I don’t think I could necessarily do that all that well if I’ve covered everything in blood. The reader would focus on that exclusively and I would lose them.There is definitely an audience for blood-soaked fiction. I know this because I’m a member of that audience. As a writer, I don’t write that way. Subtlety is a wonderful device in horror and has been used to great effect over the years. Sometimes, it isn't about getting in front of people's faces as much as it is getting them to squirm in their seats.Want to read some amazing horror? I can highly suggest this one! I fell in love with it a few years ago and you will too. Read Gutted here!Thanks for listening! Have a great week.-Bryan the WriterSupport the show (
Welcome to the podcast. I am Bryan Nowak, the author of The Dramatic Dead mystery series, the horror novels, Riapoke and Crimson Tassels. I also wrote the book The Bagorian Chronicles, a wonderful little SciFi novel, and I wrote the Dean Cordaine novellas.Thank you so much for joining me. If you like the podcast, please remember to hit the subscribe button so when new ones come out you can get them delivered. Also, it is not required, but please consider giving me a thumbs up and making a donation to the show. It helps me defray the costs of some of the things I have to buy to keep the show running. Anything is helpful. A few dollars, a few cents, pocket lint, anything really.This week, I want to talk a little about etiquette in the writing world and how it is essentially one of the most important things you can keep in mind while you are working in the business. Believe it or not, this is a huge deal and can be crucial to your future success.The rules of etiquette are easy to follow.Don't be a jerk.Treat people fairly.Don’t be pushy and mean.On social media, please read the rules and follow them.Don't get into fights on social media. You will never come out on the winning end anyway. Relish those moments when people reach back. Even if it isn’t to buy something. At least your voice was heard and that means something. It means, dear writer, that you have connected!A review of Stoker and Barker's DraculI would argue that this is the book we have needed for years. For those of you have taken the time to get to know the Dracula mythos, you will know what I mean intuitively. And there is no better person to tell the story than Mr. Barker and Mr. Stoker. Dacre Stoker is the great grand nephew of Bram Stoker himself.This story was taken directly from the annuals of the original work by Bram and would likely have been part of the original story no matter what.Well written with characters you are going to find yourself thinking about while you are trying to sleep at night, this is a solid piece of work.The story centers around young Bram and his siblings Matilda and Thornley. Central to the story is their nanny Ellen who is not only much beloved, but she also seems to harbor some secrets of her own. It is only later that we discover the true nature of those secrets and her connection to the darker world of Dracul.The Dracula mythos is one of my favorites. Bram Stoker’s Dracula is undoubtedly one of my favorite books of all time. I can’t tell you how much it warms my hear to see this come out after all these years. Yes, it is a prequel, but it stays very true to the mythos and the story that became one of the most iconic characters in the world of horror.If you loved the original story, as much as I do, then you need to read the book that lays it out where it all began. Check it out here! Thanks for listening to "All Things Writing!"By the way, as a reminder, if you have any questions you would like to ask, feel free to send them to me at or you can always email me at through the contact portal.Remember to tune in next week when we talk more about the world of writing. Until then, this is Bryan the Writer, signing off. Support the show (
One of the best parts about this program is being able to hang out with friends in the writing world. Today, I have the greatest honor of welcoming New York Times, and USA Today best selling author C.J. Ellisson. On this episode we are going to talk about all kinds of things including; What was her path and what started her down that road.What attracted her to the genre she finally settled on. What her process is for planning out her next book.What drives authors to rewrite books.What challenges did she face with her family and how did she overcome those obstacles.How to face health challenges and still make words happen on the page.Wanna know more? Check her out Ellisson on FacebookRemember, if you like the show, please hit "Like" and follow the show. You can also buy me a cup of coffee to help support my efforts at - Let's get your podcast launched! Start for FREEDisclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase, I may receive a commission at no extra cost to you.Support the show (
Some of you are at home right now, listening to his podcast, making spaghetti sauce, trying to keep your three year old from terrorizing the dog, while trying to keep the dog from stealing the ingredients you have gathered to make the sauce.So, when are you going find time and space to write?Remember that creativity, to an artist, is as essential as air or water.Find a spot in your house where you can focus. For me it’s essential that it’s not anywhere near a television. Currently, I am next to a television, and it’s driving me crazy. I notice that it is slowed my productivity way down. Frustrating, yes. However, it’s also only temporary.Don’t overlook the places in your house that you wouldn’t normally consider. For example, some of your condos being built today have incredibly large closets. Really you don’t need much room for a laptop and could even build a little desk in that space. I even know of a few authors that work from local coffee shops rather than try and write at home.If you have a 9-to-5 job there are other ways in which you can work and still have a life. I know one author who uses recording software on their cell phone and a microphone they bought online. While they’re driving to and from work, their speaking their narrative into their cell phone and then downloading that information when they get home.You could also utilize a basement. Even if that basement isn’t finished, you could buy materials and any home improvement store to quickly turn that space into something usable. Just find yourself a small desk or stand put your computer on.It is really important to have a conversation with your family about allowing you the space to work. If you don’t make it clear that writing is a priority for you, then it will never be a priority for them. I’ve made it clear my family that interrupting me while I’m working needs to be a very rare occurrence.Look for times to work when your spouse and children are at home. And remember that although it would be great if you could sit down and write for hours at a stretch, that isn’t necessary. You could carve out several blocks of shorter time and get the same amount of work done.You have to be willing to turn off that part of your brain that is calling for you to check your Facebook status every few seconds. It is far too easy to want to reach for that phone when you’re stuck in a particularly difficult sentence.I don’t know what it is about the morning, but that is the time that I work the best. It seems that any time before noon I am at my most productive. Around noon I start to flag a little bit have to turn to doing something like going for a walk or maybe reading for a while recharge my batteries. Any time after 230, I just can’t write. Since I suffer from fibromyalgia, it can make working in the afternoons difficult.I’ll tell you this, if writing is truly in your heart, and it’s meant to be a thing, then you will put in the time it’s necessary.Next week, I am going to have New York Times and USA Today best-selling author C. J. Ellison on with me. I want to particularly pick her brain about what attracted her to the genre of romance. I’m very curious what her journey was to bring her to this point in her career. She also has some wonderful tips as a writer on how to organize your project you’re currently working on.So remember to tune in for that show, it’s going to be great.Support the show (
Welcome to Podcast #26!On this weeks podcast, we are going to be talking about a bunch of different topics ranging from the attraction of anthologies, the attraction, essence, and nature of horror.Join me and my friend Liam Bradley where we delve into these and lots of other topics on this week's episode of "All Things Writing".I want you to take a moment and check him out on Amazon. You will also find a link to the book, Bizarre, which we worked on together along with tons of other amazing authors.Check him out here!Do you like what I am doing? Consider making a contribution so I can continue to do the work I do. I cannot do it without continued support from people like you. CLICK HERE!Buzzsprout - Let's get your podcast launched! Start for FREEDisclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase, I may receive a commission at no extra cost to you.Support the show (
Start with a strong character. The true essence of a good story line is a strong central character. That character begins in your mind. Before you ever put pen to paper, you really need to think about how it is that that character is going to live in whatever world you’re going to create. What I mean is that who is that character as a person? For reference you may want to check out my podcast dealing with character sheets.Remember that it has to be believable. There’s a little bit of confusion when writing fiction that you can just write something and your audience is going to believe it. Storytelling 101 really should include a short discussion on the importance of building believable fiction.Don't forget your minor characters. So we understand the importance and storytelling of having compelling characters, but what about the minor characters. I’d argue that your minor characters play a very important role in that they help build the framework around which stories being told.A good example of this is characters that people interact with in cases like stores, movie theaters, gas stations, and other places where they have to be in their world. Don’t ever underestimate the power of tangential characters to your story. It may just be that those characters provide some witty dialogue and interesting insight into your story.World building is also very important in storytelling. Remember the five senses rule. Essentially, the rule states that we have five senses. Congratulations, now you know the five senses rule. What is your character smell, see, taste, or feel. How about the sounds going on around them. Perhaps your Romeo type character just came in off the street. If you go from a hot street in a city into an air-conditioned building what does that feel like?Be relatable to your target audience. I recently read a movie script which was written by somebody who is not an American. The problem with the movie script is that it uses a lot of comparisons that American audience just isn’t going understand. You need to make sure that you are using metaphors which were target audience is going understand. Your descriptions need to be able to resonate with your target audience as well.The ending. You’ve got to be careful not to rush from climax resolution to quickly in your storytelling. It’s critically important that you don’t abandon the basic principles of keeping this story believable at this point.It is true, this is fiction, and you do have the ability to make things up but that doesn’t necessarily mean you should. That is it for this week’s podcast, thank you very much for joining me.Next week, make sure you definitely tune in as I am going to be interviewing author Liam Bradley who I got to know when we work together on the anthology Bizarre: 14 Horror Stories.  Buzzsprout - Let's get your podcast launched! Start for FREEDisclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase, I may receive a commission at no extra cost to you.Support the show (
So you’ve written the greatest book, the cover looks great, the editing is top-notch, and you’ve posted it to Amazon, drafted 2 digital, or wherever. Now what? Rest on your laurels and let that sweet, sweet, author cash flow in, right? Well, no.The convention circuit is something that you can do which puts you into direct contact with your readers. I would highly encourage every author who is looking for a way to meet individual readers in the real world to consider this route. can highly recommend attending Scares That Care. Every year we have an amazing group of people gathered to talk about scary stuff and we raise a bunch of money for an amazing cause. Check them out here! I finished reading a book entitled “The Golden Toilet; Stop Flushing Your Marketing Budget into Your Website and Build a System That Grows Your Business” by Steve Brown. This a marketing book. I usually don’t review non-fiction books, but here goes.Well written, and delightfully unapologetic in word choice, I found a real connection with the way the information is laid out.The thing I really appreciate is that Steve is not just telling you to buy his product. As a matter of fact, he actually talks about resources and ways of doing things which are not only free, but also findable in your local library. He is truly sticking to the old adage that you should only sell 20% of the time and then use the rest of your time to provide something useful. Which strongly suggests to me he is the real deal and not some guy who only talks about something rather than actually applying it.The book also offers plenty of other free resources from his website which will help you put into practice what he is talking about in the book and that is something I can totally get on board with.I really enjoyed reading the Golden Toilet and I really hope you will too. Find it here. or Check it out. It may not completely fit your situation, but take what you can from it and you can adapt it to make it your own.Safe to say that I highly recommend this book. Quick read and well worth the time. But that is not just enough for All Things Writing, ladies and gents. Nope, I want to take this book review one step farther. I want to get Steve on next week’s show! Yep, Next Saturday, check out the show to hear me interview Mr. Steve Brown of ROI. I am going to press him on marketing for the indie author. Actually, just based on my interactions with him and reading his book, I suspect it should be a fun interview and I am really looking forward to it.So that’s it for this week on all things writing. Thank you for joining me, this is Bryan the writer signing off. Buzzsprout - Let's get your podcast launched! Start for FREEDisclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase, I may receive a commission at no extra cost to you.Support the show (
In this week's show I mention how to develop your own character sheets.  Although I borrow much from other writers, I am taking the discussion farther by walking you through one of mine. I admit up front that my sheet structure was borrowed from Jenna Moreci. If you want to take a look at her videos (and I highly suggest you do), look her up at The attributes I use are as follows. Character Name:Category 1: Basic StatsSex (Physical)GenderAgeRaceEthnicityCultureLineagePhysicalHeightWeightBody TypeLifestyleWhere are they from?Category 2: RelationshipsFamilyFriendsCategory 3: SexualOrientationAttractionWhy the Attraction?ExperienceRomantic ExperienceCategory 4: SkillsTrainingHobbiesSchoolingOccupationCategory 5: PersonalityIntro/ExtrovertRight/Left BrainStrengthsWeaknessWhat makes them Heroic or Evil?Fears/InsecuritiesBeliefs and ValuesWhat do they HonorWhat would they die for?Thinking about starting your own podcast? Hit up the following link to find the best way to get your show up and running from a group just as passionate about podcasting as I am. - Let's get your podcast launched! Start for FREEDisclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase, I may receive a commission at no extra cost to you.Support the show (
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