Tag Archives: william d. holland

Supporting Fellow Writers

20 Dec

003Before I forget, which I have a tendency to do lately (hey, I’m old, live with it), I want to give a shout out to my online Lil Sis, Cynthia.  She has this great offer for those of you who like to meditate or who like coloring in coloring books….follow this link to her blog and you can download a free meditating coloring book.  No tricks to this offer…absolutely free!

Okay, let’s get down to business!


Why not, right?  If I can’t support friends on my own blog then who can I support?

Mike Friedman is his name, and if you’ve never read one of this short stories about the Carriage Driver, then you are missing out.  So let’s correct that deficiency.  Mike has two books out about the Carriage Driver, and here is the link that will take you to those books.  Great Christmas gifts for anyone who likes to read….I promise! Mike is also the guy who does the covers for my books, so his talent knows no bounds.

Okay, let’s get down to it!


“Each person holds so much power within themselves that needs to be let out. Sometimes they just need a little nudge, a little direction, a little support, a little coaching, and the greatest things can happen.” Pete Carroll

Now I’m talking to all of you, my writer friends, and it’s a message I’m very passionate about.

We need each other!

I’m still blown away, and confused, by this phenomenon where our families don’t really support our writing endeavors.  I’ve heard this over and over again from so many writers, and it’s just the strangest damned thing.  I can’t wrap my brain around the why of it.  I just published my fifth full-length novel and, besides Bev, the rest of my family was pretty ambivalent about it, and I know many of you understand that and have had the same thing happen to you.

So, we need each other.  We need our writing friends to offer words of encouragement. We need our writing friends to share our work on social media.   We need our writing friends to offer suggestions and give advice.

We need each other!

This is not a competition.  I know some writers who think it is, who think, by helping another writer, they are taking sales away from themselves.  I know other writers who feel they don’t have time to support others.

It’s all nonsense!

We need each other!


I’m going to challenge each of you.  I’m going to challenge you to support a writer today, either with words of encouragement, or by sharing their work, or, if you have the money, by buying one of their books.  Reach out and give of yourselves.  I really do believe this is important for each of us to do….and no, I’m not talking about supporting me in this challenge. I get more than enough support from all of you.

Are you up for the challenge?


My friend Greg, a fine freelancer in his own right, offered up this new site where freelance writing jobs are posted…it’s called XPlace and you can find it here.  Check it out if you’re looking to make some money.untitled-8


I’ll see you next week.  I want to wish you all a very Happy and Blessed Holiday Season, and if this isn’t a time of celebrating for you, I wish you a blessed life.

Thank you!


Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”

Satisfaction in a Job Well-Done

6 Dec

003The snow is falling here in Olympia.  It’s the first sighting of snow in two years here, and it’s beautiful.

We don’t get much snow here, so I make sure I enjoy it as much as possible while it lasts.

And that just happens to be my message, to you and to me, this Monday morning.

But first, a quote.


“Happiness does not come from doing easy work but from the afterglow of satisfaction that comes after the achievement of a difficult task that demanded our best.” Theodore Isaac Rubi


I doubt seriously if I will ever be a famous writer.  Riches do not seem to be in my future.

Still, I write!  Each day I get up and do the best I can with the words, and talent, I’ve been given.  There are days I will not hear a word of praise from family or friends.  There are days I will not sell one book.  There are days when, what I write, will not affect a single human being.

Still, I write!  And because there are many days when tangible rewards do not appear, I have to find satisfaction in the fact that I am doing the best I can to add to the beauty in this world.  I am trying, hard, to perfect my craft, and in so doing to raise the bar in literature.  I try hard to support other writers and encourage them through my comments.

I have talked to countless writers who all say the same thing, that they receive very little support from family and friends, and they are discouraged.  And I say to them that happiness is an inside job, that we must learn to find satisfaction in a job well-done.

That is my message to you this morning.

That is my message to me this morning.


Linda, are you paying attention?

If you consider yourself to be a freelance writer, or if you have formed a writing business, you are eligible for certain tax deductions.  Do the research and benefit where possible.  A tip before you venture into this scary area:  the IRS loves documentation.  Keep all your receipts.  I’ve been using these tax deductions now for six years and not once have I been questioned, but if I am questioned in the future, I’m confident I can support my expense claims.

Documentation is the word of the day!


The best time to try and pitch your book to the public library is during June or December . . . right around budget appropriations and spending seasons.


Don’t get so busy that you don’t take time to give back to your community.  If you are asked to speak for free at a writer’s group or a school, jump at the chance and say “it’s an honor.”  You may not be getting a speaker’s fee but you are still getting free publicity.town_904


Get out there and promote.  Ask local businesses if you can sell your book in their store, even if they aren’t a bookstore.  What’s the worst that can happen? They’ll say no!

Call up local newspapers and radio shows, and ask for an interview. What’s the worst that can happen?  They’ll say no!


Yes, my new novel, “Shadows Over A Hangman’s Noose,” is being released this week on Amazon.  It should be out by Thursday and I’m excited by it.  It is the best thriller I’ve written to date.

And I’ve decided my next book will also be in the Shadows series.  The plot came to me this weekend and I’m eager to get started on it, so my Sixties reflective book will have to wait six months.

Such is life!


“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”


An Interview With Freelance Writer Greg Boudonck

4 Oct


Of course it was, and it had nothing to do with me.  Anyone who has ever had contact, in-person or online, with Christy Birmingham, enjoys her immensely, and I think her interview last week, on this site, proved that point.

And we’re all in for a treat because this week we move our interview series away from poetry into the strange, at times confusing, world of freelance writing.  Today we are joined by my friend and fellow freelancer, Greg Boudonck.  Greg will give us some idea what it takes to make it as a freelance writer.  He should know since his very successful blog, Lancer Life, has attracted thousands of readers, and he has fifty books to his credit, many covering the “secrets” of successful freelancing.


“Without hard work and discipline it is difficult to be a top professional.” Jahangir Khan

The quote above perfectly describes Greg, who you will be hearing from soon.  Success in freelance writing does not happen overnight.  You do not sign up for some content site like HubPages, rack up forty or fifty bucks a month, and declare success as a freelance writer.  It takes dedication and hard work to reach the point where customers are asking for your work and where freelance-wannabes are asking for your advice.   Greg has done all that and more…and he’s done it with class.

So, without further delay, I give you Greg Boudonck.


  • Greg, thanks so much for doing this. I admire your work as a freelance writer.  Can you tell us ll how you got into this business at the start?  What led you to the crazy world of content writing?


“Bill, the admiration is completely mutual. I mean, who are you to admire me when you have been the top Hubber now for what 3, 4 years?


“As for how I even entered the business, it somewhat fell upon me. I had a poem and a short story published years earlier, but had stayed with working hard labor even though I always loved writing. I was working the graveyard shift in a metal factory in Missouri and my brother had given me a desktop computer. I came across the website called Hubpages and started writing my thoughts there…and then tragedy struck. My 23 month old Grandson was murdered, in my opinion, even though no charges were ever filed. I found myself on a blacklist in Lebanon, Missouri because of the protesting I made, so my recourse to battle (and to make money), was to write. I wrote my first book, Grandpa’s Mission and proceeded to start taking content writing jobs from places such as Zerys and Textbrokers. The money was not great, but it helped put food on the table.”


  • What kind of platform have you constructed for yourself? Social media? Ebooks? What other steps did you take to get your name out there among the masses?


“I slowly built my reputation and started a free website. I joined a website called Elance where I landed my first high paying gig. Over the course of a 3 month period, I helped put together a book on Latent Semantic Indexing and other highly technical procedures in the world of search engines. Using those proceeds, I started building my reputation further, but then 2 other tragedies occurred; my house burned and then my wife of 30 years died. I was ready to just give up… the daily bottles of whiskey showed it, but with the support of Hubbers and a lovely lady I met online in Puerto Rico who told me to take a vacation, I overcame and stayed on the vacation… a working vacation in Puertio Rico.


“I have written over 50 books, gained clients through Elance and then Upwork and invested in my own website—Lancerlife.com where I have gained more clients. I am on Linkedin, Facebook and Twitter and Google + too. All of which have helped me gain an online reputation. Lancerlife has been the biggest means of self-promotion because by helping other freelancers, I am helping my own business. And, I offer a free ebook for subscribers.”


  • Fifty books, Greg? I’m feeling inadequate suddenly. LOL I know, at times, you have to turn down writing gigs because you are soooo busy. What’s your secret? How do you manage to find so many paying gigs, and how do you manage to get so much repeat business from established customers? I know a few freelance wannabes who have given up because they couldn’t find jobs, so what are you doing differently?


“You are right Bill… I AM BUSY! I often wonder why other freelancers aren’t. And then I figured out why… Because I will take the jobs others are frightened of, or will not try.


“I am not inexpensive, but I do not overcharge either. I would have to tell you that my secret is…now listen closely… I make myself indispensable. I provide over, and above what the client orders and I make it so easy to read and SEO friendly that 98% of other freelancers can not match me. I don’t mean to sound boastful, but that is the secret.


“I also follow the Golden Rule. I only promise what I can deliver in the time proposed; I am fair on pricing, but I also expect the client to be fair too, so I offer 2 free revisions and any more costs them extra. I am friendly but businesslike and it works.


“To all the newbies…You have to take what you can get; sometimes I just do simple 50 word comments, sometimes I will write about subjects I have no knowledge of (research is an important part of freelancing without plagiarizing) and sometimes I will manage a clients Facebook page. You also have to be willing, and know how to negotiate. This game is sometimes like a fine art auction.”


  • Greg, can you describe a normal workday for us?


“A normal workday Bill??? My life is anything but normal, but I do try to get a basic plan for each day the night before. The semi-average workday goes like this here in Puerto Rico: 1: wake and feed the animals.2: make coffee and feed my Maggie. 3: computer and internet on and check emails and social media. 4: handle my best client’s chores…Part Time Commander posts and Facebook feeds. 5: take a break and maybe do a bit of yard stuff on the 1 acre Puerto Rico mountain environment (pick bananas, mangoes, papaya, etc.) 6: other client work…either binary options web content, lottery web content, an ebook ghost writing job, press releases, etc… I schedule these by due dates. 7: I try to fit in a post if possible for Lancerlife or the newest website I bought…Conaware.com.


“And, that all comes back to another little secret about the freelance life and business in general; I do not put all my eggs in 1 basket. I make money from my freelancing, book royalties, affiliate ads on my websites, items I sell on my websites as well as being involved in a MLM company. If one area is suffering, another area picks it up.”


  • Last question, Greg, and I’ll leave you alone. Can you give one piece of advice to those just starting out in the freelance world?


“Bill, the best advice I can give to anyone considering entering the world of freelance writing is first and foremost: make sure it is what you want to do. If you are doing it just or money, you will get let down quickly.


“Yes, I am doing good now, but it was rough at first. Secondly, if it is what you want…Don’t quit! Read, learn and do. Do some more, read even more and learn as much as possible. Freelancing is a great career move, but you need to realize that it IS hard work and there are difficult times, but WOW, I sure love it!


“You have to remember that it is a business; your business. If your business is not open, you don’t make profits. You have to treat it as such. That is the only way you will find success in freelancing.


“Last but not least Bill, I need to give you a huge thanks for all the support and mentorship you have given me. I have learned a lot from you and I appreciate your friendship.”




My thanks to Greg Boudonck.  You can also find him on his Facebook page.  I guarantee you’ll get something of value from following him.




Are you looking to make a few bucks as a freelance content writer? I came across a site called Content Runner…actually a friend suggested it…so I went and signed up to see what it was all about.  I’m not there necessarily to make money as much as I am to try it out so I can report back to all of you.  So far I like the site but it’s the very early stages of my trial there.




Some of you got something out of the poetry corner last week, so here we are again.


Who has heard of a septalet?  Well here is a definition of this traditional poetry form and an example of it:


The Septolet is a poem consisting of seven lines containing fourteen words with a break in between the two parts. Both parts deal with the same thought and create a picture.


Example #1:




moving swiftly

across the plain,

most intent.



grazing contently

on his meal.


Copyright © 2003 Crystal Rose


Try it; you just might like it!




Have a great week of writing and I’ll see all of you next week, same place, same time!  Next week I’ll have an interview with Audrey Howitt, one of the finest poets I have ever read…..yes, I said “ever read.”  She’s that good!




“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”




Writing Minus Promotion Equals…..Loneliness

30 Aug



Priorities, right?  There are only so many hours in a day, and when that day runs out, some things fall by the wayside. I’m afraid blogging is one of those things.

If someone can solve the “time” problem I’m all ears.

Today we’re going to talk about promoting your writing career….if you have one, of course.

But first, the quote of the day.


“Without promotion, something terrible happens… nothing!” P. T. Barnum

Writing is an introverted activity/pursuit.

Promotion is an extroverted activity/pursuit.

Therein lies the problem for a great many, dare I say majority, of writers.

Myself included.

I hate to promote myself.  In a  perfect world I could sit in my writing studio and crank out words until the cows come home and never once face the buying public, and while doing my imitation of an ostrich my books would sell like proverbial hotcakes.

Sigh!  Now back to reality.

I hate it, but if I have any visions of ever being more than house-bound recluse with books no one has ever read, then I must promote

Here is my five-step promotion formula.  Use it if you find it helpful.

  • Plan……if you don’t have a sound marketing plan, there is no better time than now to write one up. If you don’t know how to write a business plan, now is the time to do some research on that matter.
  • Start local….forget about going national if you are an indie writer. You’ll have your hands full just handling your local scene with local newspapers, local magazines, bookstores, libraries, book clubs, etc.
  • Build a buzz about your product…..blogging, social media, books clubs, etc.
  • Widen your reach….from local to regional to national. The only limits you have are the ones you set on yourself.
  • Be consistent…..for every three hours you set aside to write, one hour should be devoted to promotion. Set a schedule for promotion as well as writing and stick to it.

I’ll talk more about all of this next week.  In the meantime…..

Get busy!


I’m glad you asked.  I’m at the 20,000 word mark on my new Shadow novel, “Shadows Over A Hangman’s Noose.”  It’s going well. I hate to predict a completion date because so much can affect that date, but I see no reason why I can’t finish by November…..heck, maybe I’ll get energetic and publish it on my birthday in October, a gift for myself.B.T.K.C. x5A

Or not!


While we’re on the topic of promotion, check out the following:

Eventbrite.com……use this site to send customer e-mail invitations and a promotional event like a book signing.

Zvents.com…..list your event and it will be distributed across the site’s media network.

Meetup.com….a great place to find special interest groups by location and topic….for future speaking engagements.

Speakerfile.com….also a great place for authors and topic experts to promote.


Let me share the opening two lines from a poem called “Breathing Lessons” by one of my favorite poets, Audrey Howitt….

“The dead must breathe sometimes,
inhale their memories”



I just think that is brilliant writing.  How about you?

I wish for you a very successful week of writing.  I wish the same for me.


“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”  #greatestunknownauthor





A Simple Message of Gratitude

16 Aug

003As many of you know, for ten days our lives were turned upside down and inside out, with Bev in the hospital and the experts not knowing exactly what was wrong with her.  It’s a humbling and helpless feeling to have a loved one hurting and not be able to make it all better for them.

I’m happy to report she is once again home and our lives are returning to some normalcy.  We still don’t know what caused the infection in her intestine.  All we know is the antibiotics did their job and she is once again fine.

I kept everyone up-to-date on Facebook and quite frankly, I was blown away by the flood of well-wishes and prayers as the ordeal unfolded.  There are times when I am, well, a cynical bastard.  I’ve just seen too much pain and hatred and meanness during my lifetime, and during my darker moments I have very little hope for mankind.  But then something like this comes along, and relative strangers reach out and give us strength when we most need it.  Not that any of you are strangers, but I think you know what I mean.  We have never met in person and yet you stopped what you were doing to reach out to me when I needed you.

So thank you!  I have nothing else to give you but those two simple words, but thank you!

And Bev thanks you!

Now please, can we get back to normal?


“Be strong, be fearless, be beautiful. And believe that anything is possible when you have the right people there to support you.” Misty Copeland

In my “Mailbag” series on HubPages, there was a question last week about family members not supporting their writer/family member, and I’m still a bit surprised by the number of us out there who share that commonality.  For whatever reason, many of our family members don’t take the time to read our articles and books.  They show support in other ways, but actually reading our work seems to be beyond their capabilities.

It no longer really bothers me.  I still find it curious, but I’m not bothered by it.

And one of the reasons I can toss it aside is the fact that so many writers loyally support me, complete strangers who have climbed about my wagon and been with me through every article and every book.  I find that amazing and encouraging and uplifting.

I wish I had the money to buy all of the books that all of my writer friends have written, but I don’t.  What I can do, though, is make every effort to read their articles and blogs, and I am pretty good about doing that.  And I will always have room in my blog should they want to guest blog on it, and I try to mention a fellow writer from time to time…..

So, the point being, make an effort to support your peers.  In some way, reach out and give them a boost.  We all need it.  We all need each other!


A shout out to my young and talented friend Kailey.  You can find her on HP under the name “Social Thoughts,” and that name perfectly describes her articles.  This is a no-nonsense writer who cares deeply about her causes.  She is at times crude, at times painfully blunt, but she is always honest and passionate, and I respect those traits greatly.


I hope this week is filled with a dazzling display of craftsmanship by you all.  The world needs you to spread your wings and fly.



“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”

Marketing Part 2

7 Jul


And I’m welcoming you back to the second part of Mike Friedman’s article about marketing, so get comfortable, grab a snack and let’s do it!


For a small fee an ad offered to drive x number of visits to your site. ‘That’s sound great’, you think, here is my money. And right on time the stats showed a big jump in traffic. Great you think, where did all this traffic come from? So you find out – http://theteaguide.com/. That’s right a tea room in India. Pinged (I think that is the term) my blog page 19,000 times. The page rank may or may not have moved. No eyes read my offer.So unless you have a dedicated web site for your book which is already receiving traffic, I do not recommend this idea.

TWITTER, that’s it, get your message out on Twitter. (write a note on a scrap of paper near your computer). Find out what is a Twitter.

Respond to an ad, for a small fee, I will send your message to my 45,000 twitter followers. “Great, here is my money.” Order sent, I suppose. My email was hacked and mailings from Indonesia and Malaysia started showing up in my inbox. Twitter – ok – I tried twits.

Pinterest, I have heard of that. I’ll get the word out through Pinterest. For a small fee I will send your information to my 4500 Pinterest followers. Ok, here is my money. Pinterest is a fascinating place.

I see an ad, “I will place your ad on our emails that we send out daily to over 1000 accounts.” That sounds great a thousand people will see your book title. “Great here is my money.”

Increase your Alexa/Google reading. Great … You know the rest. Not recommended unless you have a dedicated web site.

I see an ad, “I will tweet anything you want to my amazingly wonderful, engaged, reply happy 275,000+ followers on Twitter.” Don’t fall for this.

I see ads “Air your commercial on popular internet radio section. Air your commercial on Los Angeles NBC radio affiliate advertise your product. I will play your ad on my radio show for 1 week. I will play your ad on my radio show for a month.

Tough to measure this method. I wrote ads, had them recorded sent out mp3 files and listened to the ads over and over on streaming Internet Radio. This had the most solid feel of the methods used.

Air YOUR radio commercial to 100,000+ listeners. Done.

This was the most fun. The ad read, Create and give you an impressive and attractive Commercials Intro Video Animation with Your text and Images

This is the results of weeks of self taught Book promotion. Scoreboard zero sales, through these efforts. But all is not lost. There have seen sales sent my way. When I asked ‘how’ from the person who brought the sales in, the answers were, “I told my neighbor. Oh, I work with her.” Etc.


Start over from the beginning.



I think there’s a valuable lesson to be learned in Mike’s article….word of mouth is free and oh so valuable.  Establish relationships with your readers, produce quality work and let the cards fall where they will.


Someone asked me on the Mailbag the other day whether I thought flash fiction was a viable genre to publish in…a collection of flash fiction….and I honestly don’t know.  Flash fiction is really just another way of saying short stories, and short stories have been popular since, well, a long time ago….so I see no specific reason why a collection of self-published flash fictions wouldn’t sell.

Flash fictions are very popular these days among writers, but do they sell?  Not as well, on Kindle, as full-length novels, but there are writers who do quite well on Amazon selling novellas….checking sales figures, anthologies do not do well and I have no reason for that.

My personal opinion: the writing market is undergoing one hell of a fluctuation, and when it will stabilize, and what it will look like once it does stabilize, is anyone’s guess. The best we can do is work on our own craft and try to catch the wave when it develops.


So much to do, so little time.

I’m outta here. Have a great week of writing!


“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”




Is Relevance Terribly Important?

24 Jun

003I take a day off from writing and then I’m hopelessly behind in my writing. Go figure! Simple math, right?

The thing is, though, unlike when I was younger, today I just toss up my hands and shout “OH WELL” and be done with it, rather than weeping and grinding my teeth all week long.  There are some advantages to growing older and learning that “it just doesn’t matter,” to borrow a line from the movie “Meatballs.”

So, what shall we talk about today?

How about relevance?


“It used to be that we felt that when we went to a theater, a legitimate theater… that we were going to share an experience together. That when we walked away where there would be something to talk about in that movie that had some meaning and relevance in our lives. And I think that we have lost that.” Frank Pierson

This is an interesting quote with regards to writing.  If I understand Mr. Pierson’s quote correctly, he’s saying that there is no relevance in the theater today….but I’m not sure, from his quote, whether he thinks that’s a bad thing or not.  Maybe he’s ambivalent and that’s fine if he is.

What about in writing?  Is it necessary for a fiction writer to include relevance in his/her fiction, or is it enough to simply entertain and tell a good story?

As a former firebrand of the Sixties, I have changed regarding this topic.  Once I thought there had to be relevance in all of the Arts.  Today I feel entertainment has great value, and there are millions of people out there who simply need….some desperately….to be entertained.


You are the writer.  You know what motivates you to write, and you know your vision.  Do not be swayed from your chosen path because others think your vision should be different.  In the end, how you feel about your writing will be the determining factor whether you succeeded or not.


My new novella is out…..”The Billy the Kid Chronicles: Home is a Dangerous Place.”  It’s available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle.  I priced it as low as possible, so I hope you take a chance on it.  You’ll find some pure entertainment in it as well as some social relevance if you dig deep enough.  Thank you!  And I’ve started the next in the series, “Breathing Fire on a Cold Winter’s Day.”  It is never-ending!


I thought I’d start a new segment to this blog and call it “Sharing Corner.’  My hope is that those who read this will then comment, and in the comments you’ll share new ideas for marketing with us all.  I think it is always helpful to hear from other writers who are paddling the same boat as the rest of us, so how about it? Do you have any marketing suggestions for us all?


I’m not pointing fingers at all. I’m just tossing out something to consider. I was on Facebook the other day and my buddy Mike Friedman was showcasing the books written by a number of his friends.  He must have posted ten of them before he ran out of steam, and I thought at the time how nice that was of him to do that.

We, as writers, are going nowhere if we do not foster “word of mouth” sales and marketing.  A friend tells a friend tells a friend, and slowly our sales increase.

So my question for you is what have you done lately to support a fellow writer through word of mouth?

Just something to think about!  This is not an easy business, and anytime we can help a fellow writer we really should…don’t you think?


Thanks so much for stopping by.  Remember to check out Mike Friedman and his fine book “The Carriage Driver.”


“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”





A Stumble Here, A Bumble There

31 May


The truth is, I stumble and bumble just like all other writers.  There is so much to learn and that’s on top of trying to perfect one’s craft, which is never-ending, or at least it should be never-ending, right?

I’m still trying to learn how to make a podcast.  Well, I can actually make one now, but what I want to do is make a quality podcast, one I can be proud of, and that takes considerably more time. So hang in there and be patient with me.

I have so much I want to do and so little time.


“Know the true value of time; snatch, seize, and enjoy every moment of it. No idleness, no laziness, no procrastination: never put off till tomorrow what you can do today.” Philip Stanhope, 4th Earl of Chesterfield

This has always been a struggle for me….enjoying every moment.  I’m too busy to enjoy it, damn it!  LOL  But I’m learning, slowly, to step away and enjoy the process of life.

I’ll never be perfect.  The logical part of me accepts that but still, I’m driven to be perfect, and therein lies the struggle.  No matter how good I am on any given day, it is never good enough.  I’m not sure where that comes from but I know it is true.

No matter how much I do it will never be enough.  Illogical but again, true!

Maybe it’s from watching my dad die in my arms when I was twenty.  Maybe it’s having a dear friend fade away from Alzheimer’s, or having my best friend recently be told that bone cancer was killing him quickly.  These things weigh on me, and drive me on, and there appears to be no shut-off valve….and in truth I’m not sure I want such a valve.

I believe we are here on earth to achieve a higher purpose than just breathing and going through the motions.  I’ll have more than enough time to rest once I die.  For now, I’m among the living, and the living should, well, live like their tail-feathers are on fire.

Am I the only one who feels this way?


Again I want to point you in the direction of a new website started by a friend of mine….John Hansen is involved in the site, The Creative Exiles….stop and take a look at it. I think you’ll find it worth your time.

And another shout out to Mike Friedman for his wonderful work on my book covers.  He is quite good at this book cover thing as well as being an excellent writer. Check out “The Carriage Driver,” available on Amazon.


I  guess that’s it for this week.  I’ve got quail to feed and ducks to laugh at…and then there’s the ghostwriting gig I’ve got going on, and the latest Billy the Kid novella, and articles and learning about podcasts and sweet angels above, where does the time go?


“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”

Writers are Observers

19 Nov

003Welcome back to Artistry with Words.  I’m  your host, Bill Holland, and for the next few minutes I’ll be tossing ideas at you and hoping some of them stick.

Let me begin today by telling you that yesterday I went to the Laundromat.  Trust me, this will tie into writing if you just bear with me for a few.


You can observe a lot by watching.

Yogi Berra
God bless Yogi!


Okay, back to the Laundromat.  Our dryer gave up the ghost and went to that huge appliance store in the sky, and that meant Bill had to go to the laundromat. Now there was a time in my life when I would have dreaded that particular trip, but now I’m a writer and I see it for what it is…a great opportunity to observe.

If you want to see “real people,” and a great cross-section of America, go to a Laundromat.  There is every type of human creature at a Laundromat, no matter when you go.  I’m talking about fascinating, and if you are a writer it is an experience you really owe yourself.

I don’t know how many times I’ve had writers tell me they have trouble with character descriptions.  I had one writer tell me that all of his descriptions sounded the same and for whatever reason he simply could not make his characters come alive.  That’s where the Laundromat comes in handy.

I was there an hour and I literally spent the hour writing people descriptions in a notebook.  My fellow laundry people gave me some great stuff to work with, and you can bet a few of them will show up in future stories and books.


Either go to a Laundromat or go to WalMart.  Either one will be invaluable.


I’m going back to work, part-time, starting next week.  I’ll probably be gone three days a week, so obviously that will severely cut back on my writing, but….oh well.

Why am I doing this?  Well, we need a new dryer for one. LOL  Seriously, we have had some unexpected expenses and I need to make some more money, but the other reason is because I’ve spent  the better part of four years tied to my desk churning out thousands of articles and four books, and this writer needs to step out into the real world and find out what life is all about.  Being “isolated” is not good for this guy, so I need to “go public.”

I just mention that because my exposure online will be limited as long as I’m working this new job.

And yes, I’ll miss our daily interactions.

But I’m not dying; I just won’t be here daily to bug you.

Thanks for dropping by!


“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”