Last Minute Jitters [or] What Will You Be Writing?

Last week I posted about NaNo. I said I was going to do it, and I will. But as you can see by the duel title of this message, I am growing very skeptical – or undecided – about what my subject matter should be.

I had it all figured out until last night. I was going to write a Christmas story that I’ve had planned for the last seven years, but I realized I’m just not ready for it yet. It’s a precious story to me that I don’t want to be rushed.

Then I started thinking about what people have been saying about my book The Man in the Box (coming out Nov. 30th). And it seems I’ve established myself as a suspense/adventure writer. Now granted, my next book is nowhere near said genre (Scroll down here for synopsis), but I wouldn’t want to disappoint fans of the book by deviating from suspense for too long – hence, keeping people in suspense…

Anyway, all that to say, I thought I had my book for this NaNo writer’s contest all figured out. But clearly, I don’t. I’m writing this as an encouragement to those of you who find themselves in the same boat as me. You’re not alone. And (I hope) I’m not alone.

When it comes to stories and books, I don’t want to just wing it. I want to deliver the best plot, the best characters, I possibly can. And I hope you’re the same way. I hope there aren’t many people entering this contest just to write a book, without having any concept of what they want to write. (How many times have you seen an awful movie and wondered, “Did they just make this because they were bored?”) No, I hope you go into November with a clear reason as to why you’re writing a book, and with some concept of what it will be about.

Because if you just start writing something without having any idea where it’s going or why you’re writing it, then it’s very likely you’re going to give up, and you’ll kick yourself and eat a lot of ice cream and you won’t be in any shape to eat a hearty Thanksgiving dinner… hmmm, I think I see why this contest is held in November…

I’m not there yet. But I have four days to get there. And so do you. And remember (as soon as I figure out how) I’m going to have a link somewhere on this blog for you to post your developing stories for all to see. So, stay encouraged, get prepared, and be ready to write the best book you possibly can. NaNo starts November 1st.

[Image Credit]

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Why We’re Here

My wife and I want to adopt James. We don’t know what he looks like or where he’s from. Or even if he’s alive yet. We don’t even know if he will be a boy, in which case we’ll have to pick out a girl name. (Any suggestions?) This is an attempt to find him. Howard Thurman, author and theologian, once said, “Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive, and go do that, because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” James needs me to come alive and writing makes me come alive. But how will that help us adopt James? And how can you help?

It’s simple, really. I will provide you all with book recommendations (I read, on average, four a month), short stories, homemade picture books, and adoption news. The short stories you’ll want to pay attention to are about a boy named Robbie Lake. And with your help, Robbie Lake is going to grow up to be famous. Very, very famous. His stories will lead up to the unpublished novel I’ve written about him called, The Man in the Box. With your help this blog will generate enough publicity around the book, thus creating a demand for its publication. Once published, sales will help fund our mission to adopt James.

All you have to do is follow this blog, and refer it to others. What does this do? The more people I have following our blog, the more people will want my book to be published, thus causing publishers to take notice and want to publish the book. This will help us raise funds for James’s adoption. So please, if you do anything right now, follow this blog and share it with your friends and family.

I will keep you posted on the adoption process, and one day, if the Lord wills it, we’ll bring James home from some distant country and you can write welcome messages to him on this blog, and he’ll have you to thank for helping to bring him home.