My Planned Vacation

A couple weeks ago I shared with you about my unplanned vacation due to not having a computer. Beginning September 25, I´ll actually be on a planned vacation – but I still have to borrow a computer. I haven´t figured out how to post pictures on this machine, so all you get is text. To all you that I follow on HubPages, know I´ll be back to read your wonderful posts as soon as I have a full-time laptop again. I miss all those great reads.

That being said, there will be no weekly update next Wednesday, and I may not be around much to answer any emails or comments. Don´t take it personally. I need to detox.

Okay. So let´s play the What If game. Just some silly thoughts that might help you develop part or all of a story line or you can use them as a writing exercise.

What if . . . COVID-19 was intentionally invented by a mad scientist who already had a vaccine ready to sell to the world? (Who knows? This may not be fiction – lol).

What if . . . an old high school sweetheart made contact with his/her old flame after many years? What if . . . he/she was married to an overly jealous husband/wife?

What if . . . your protagonist was gifted with the ability to see the spirit world around her/him. What kind of danger might she/he be aware of that others are not?

What if . . . a young married couple ready to start a family suddenly finds out one has a terminal disease? What heartaches or victories might they go through?

What if . . . Your protagonist witnesses a murder and is threatened to keep quiet – or else? What kind of moral/ethical dilemmas and danger might that present?

What if . . . your protagonist is captured by your antagonist and is programmed to do the antagonist´s bidding?

What if . . .you shared some of your ¨What ifs¨ in the comments below. I would love to read them.

Well, that takes care of things for this week. See you next time and have a great couple of weeks!



Negative Reviews – A Given

Fall is falling in Central Pennsylvania. The air is crisp and fresh. The skies take on a different hue of blue. It won´t be long until the mountains are ablaze with gorgeous color. Without a doubt, this is my favorite time of year. My prayer is that you all are safe from the wildfires and hurricanes and are enjoying this time of year wherever you are.

Did you ever write something you thought was really good, and then a bad review shows up? If you haven´t, you will. It´s bound to happen. Negative reviews are just a part of writing. Nothing will ever change that, but there may be a way to lessen unwanted feedback.

I came across a story about an airport that constantly got bad reviews for slow service at baggage claim. They came up with a unique idea, and the negative reports slowed considerably. What did they do? Well, they could have emphasized speed on the service – make sure everyone is hustling and pushing things through faster.

Instead, they simply moved the baggage pickup to a further carousel. People would have to walk further, which would take longer, which would eliminate them standing around waiting and complaining. What’s funny is, it took the same amount of time for people to get their bags. But because they were walking (and not “waiting”), the complaints dropped significantly.

The moral of the story is maybe you don´t have to rewrite your story (you can be sure someone won´t like the rewrite, too), but change the way you frame the book. The reason people give negative feedback is because their expectations have not been met. So, meet their expectations.

How about this? Is your book longer or shorter than most? Let your audience know ahead of time.

Got clean or explicit romance scenes? (Hopefully, it´s clean, or at least, not too explicit). Tell them.

Is your writing more technical or more inspirational? Make it known.

There really is a market for just about anything you write. Some will love it and others will hate it. That´s just the nature of the beast, but when you identify from the get-go what the book is about, you´ll have a better chance to eliminate those unwanted reviews.

Just some thought to ponder and that will wrap it up for another week!


My Unplanned Vacation

Have you noticed? You didn´t get an update last Wednesday. Computers are wonderful – when they work. They´re terrible – when they don´t. Well, my computer isn´t working. I have to borrow one to get today´s update out. So, thank you, thank you, thank you to the one who loaned it to me.

Although I appreciate the use of the computer, it´s different than what
I´m used to, so I´m on an unplanned vacation. It´s been really hard to figure out stuff. You may have noticed no pictures week. That´s easy. I
don´t know how to add them. Somehow, things don´t seem right without a picture, Oh, well!

To you who follow me on HubPages, it´s going to be a while. If I haven´t commented on one of your articles – well, now you know why. I´ll get back to you just as soon as I´m able. To my students who have not finished their courses, I´ll add the time to your commitment when I get back up and running.

Even typing is confusing to me. The keyboard is much smaller than what I was working on. Every time I hit a t, I hit a y. Every time I hit a c, I hit v.

This being the case, l´ll be short this week. Better days are ahead, so keep plugging away on whatever you have. See you next week! – hopefully.