Cool free stuff for you during my Birthday Week

I turn 54 this week.

I’ll have a post on that in a couple days, but for today, I have some presents for you.

Today (Monday, Oct 6, 2014—through Monday, October 13, 2014)


For every fiction book you buy from my shop for $5.99, I’ll give you one $2.99 book free.

Astute readers will have already noticed that there are 8 books for 5.99, and only 6 for $2.99.

So if you buy more than SIX fiction books, you also get your choice of ONE of the following:

  • Character Clinic,
  • Plot Clinic,
  • Language Clinic,
  • Culture Clinic,
  • World Clinic,
  • Page-Turning Scenes.

To get them, set up a HELP DESK ticket. Title your ticket HAPPY BIRTHDAY! FICTION.  (You can copy and paste the ticket title) 😀

Copy and paste your receipts (including purchase dates) from my shop,, or B&N, and let me know which books you want.


If you buy one BIG COURSE from the Shop:

You get one Workshop from this list:

  • How To Write Dialogue With Subtext
  • How To Beat Writer’s Block
  • How To Motivate Yourself

Or both workshops from this list:

  • How To Find Your Writing Discipline
  • 7-Day Crash Revision


One course from THIS list:

  • Character Clinic,
  • Plot Clinic,
  • Language Clinic,
  • Culture Clinic,
  • World Clinic,
  • Page-Turning Scenes.

To get them, set up a HELP DESK ticket. Title your ticket HAPPY BIRTHDAY! NONFICTION.  (You can copy and paste the ticket title) 😀

These offers are also good for purchases made ON OR AFTER Friday, September 5th, 2014.

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Passed 35,000 Words on Create A World Clinic #writer #worldbuilding

The R&R last weekend, plus the chance to rethink my approach to the final chapters of Create A World Clinic, have helped me tremendously with the progress of the course. I’d gotten bogged down in minutia, and stepping back and asking myself not HOW I world build, but WHY I world build, got me back on track. Finished the Container Universes chapter today, will start into Knowable Universes tomorrow.

I’m 5000 words over my intended link, and am probably still looking at another 10K to 15K before completion, but it’s lovely to see the progress bar stretching again.

If you want to receive EarlyBird notification when the course goes live, you can sign up here. This is the HTTS Boot Camp list, so if you’re already on it, you’ll receive early notice without signing up again.


This Saturday, I’m going to get back on track by writing and producing the next How To Think Sideways Quick Fix: I think the next one is #18 (but am on the wrong computer right now to verify that.) In any case, during the Epic Site Update Slog, everything but the site work fell by the wayside.

And in the next couple of days, I’m going to put together a brief coupon sale for the books and courses on How To Think Sideways. More on that later, though.

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I’m giving away a bunch of my WRITING courses. #free #writing #courses

I’m doing a WRITING-COURSE GIVEAWAY PRIZE DRAWING as part of my release of How To Revise Your Novel on the new classroom.

This includes the GRAND PRIZE: Full free membership in all three of my BIG courses—How To Think Sideways: Career Survival School for Writers, How To Revise Your Novel: Get the Book You WANT from the Wreck You WROTE, and How To Write A Series.

Here’s how to enter the drawing.

  1. Sign Up For Free "101 Worst Mistakes Writers Make In First Draft"
  2. Confirm your email address: You’ll go to the download page immediately. Download your Special Report.
  3. Create Your Free Membership and check your email to confirm your email and create your username and password.
  4. You’ll go to the Classroom Hub.
  5. Click the links shown in the video to reach the sign-up page.

No purchase necessary to enter or win. You MUST be eighteen or older to participate. Void where prohibited. complete rules are here (opens in new tab).

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Upcoming Stories and Classes #writer #reader

I’ve been nearly invisible here for ages because migraines left me with barely enough energy to keep courses running and get some writing done. But a low-sodium diet is proving to have a 1:1 correlation with the migraines—if I accidentally eat something high in sodium, I pay for it with three days of migraines, starting within 24 hours of whatever I ate.

When I manage to avoid the salt, I feel normal. No vertigo. No icepick migraines. No regular migraines.

So if they aren’t curable, the migraines are starting to look like they’ll at least be controllable.

Second, because for the last three or four weeks I’ve been MOSTLY feeling better (you’d be amazed what has a lot of sodium in it, dammit), I’ve moved most of How To Revise Your Novel to the new platform. This is NOT a course upgrade—it’s the identical course, but once I get it up and running, (I’m looking at June 28th as my target goal for opening on the new site) the student discount on HTTS will come back. It will become available to students once they have completed the first month of HTRYN.

Then I’ll move How To Write A Series over.

I’m nearly finished with Create A World Clinic, too, and I’ll bring that out right before I start doing the How To Write A Series Expansion.

Because of the necessity of doing good, complete demos, and equally because of my desire to do the expansion in a timely fashion, I’m going to put off writing The Emerald Sun: Moon & Sun Book Three until I finish the expansion.

The How To Write A Series Expansion, will, instead, be six linked 10,000-word novelettes set in Settled Space, but with mostly different characters. This way, I’ll be able to demo the complete, start-to-finish arc of a series, and all the details of keeping everything running between crossing storylines involving multiple characters.

After that comes the simultaneous writing of The Emerald Sun and the HTTS Walkthrough Completion.

And then I’m taking a frikkin’ vacation. :mrgreen:

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Sales page crashed for some folks, discount BACK until Midnight-ish SATURDAY

I don’t know if it was the timer I was using, or the link from Aweber messing things up, or WHAT it was that went wrong.

And I didn’t know ANYTHING had gone wrong until I’d already shut everything down and deleted all the discount pages.

THEN I checked my email, and found a LOT of people who’d been trying to reach me WHILE the discount was on to tell me the page was broken.

It wasn’t broken for everyone. But many of the folks it was broken for sent me screenshots proving it was broken for them. And I didn’t know because I was just BURIED in Support getting new students into class and setting up the new pages.

A lot of people DID get in.

But apparently a LOT of people didn’t even have a chance. I noticed the jump of over a hundred emails in the newsletter box, which is why, when I had the chance to look a mail, I checked. Some of them were from the other side of the planet, and I’m guessing they won’t get this email now until they wake up. So they’d end up missing the discount AGAIN.

So here’s the deal.

Margaret pulled deleted pages out of the database for me for members, and meanwhile I put together a page that will work.

The temporary main page, which I’ll simply delete at midnight, DOESN’T HAVE THE DISCOUNT PRICES ON IT. They’re in the buttons, though. So write down the price you see on the page, click through the button, and you’ll be able to compare and see the discount is there.

The member sign-up pages do have the right prices–Margaret got those. And if you ARE a site member with a login that works with the orange login box, please remember to sign in so you can get your membership rebate and/or bonus.

Because I DON’T KNOW what went wrong, I’ve put together a letter without a timer. I’ve kept anything fancy out of my Aweber email so there won’t be any funky codes that can screw things up.

And because I have no idea how many people this problem affected, the deal is open for everyone.

At midnight-ish SATURDAY MARCH 16, EDT , I’ll shut it down again. Midnight-ish, because without the tracker, I have to do it by hand.

So you agree that if you’re not there in time this time, I did my best and you won’t hit me with “missed it by three seconds, can I still have the discount?” Okay.?

Get in there in time to give yourself time to read the letter and click the button of your choice.

Here’s the page:


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Sneak peek: HTTS Ultra bonus (partial)


How To Think Sideways is all about digging in, tipping everything you thought you knew about writing on its side, learning techniques that will make your writing FLY.

It takes time, but you get amazing results.

When you’re sitting in the MIDDLE of a writing problem, what you really want is a quick fix to get you over THIS hurdle, right now.


You told me where things were going wrong—what your writing problems were.

Now take a look at what that turned into…

I recognized your problems as I read through them. At one time or another, I’ve hit them. If you write long enough, you will.

I didn’t have time to live with them or suffer through them, though, because if I didn’t write, we didn’t eat. So I fixed them. And I was willing to try some pretty strange shit to do it.

Now I’m going to show YOU what worked.

Here are just a few of the high-speed, maximum-intensity workshops you’ll be getting in HTTS Ultra—crunchy little morsels you can plug into your worst writing problems instantly—no theory, no fluff, just the fix you need whenever you need it:

  • Get Beyond The Blinking Cursor
    Get words—good words—on the page in just minutes, without anxiety, without dread, without second-guessing yourself, without struggling for the ONE perfect word, or sentence, or paragraph your mind insists you must have.

  • “But I’ll Never Be Shakespeare…”
Stall out because you compare yourself to writers you aren’t and never will be? Here’s a quick and dirty solution to stop THAT little problem dead in its tracks.
  • Defenestrate The Dwindling, Superfluous Self-Aggrandizement Of Perambulating Verbosity
Description dragging your story through frozen molasses? This quickie will pitch the blather out the window in a hurry.

  • “I Can’t Make Myself Write.”

    If this is your problem, I have a fix. I call this one the “Ice Water” exercise. It’s a shocker.

  • Cure Hummingbird Brain
Write, delete, backup, fidget… New idea—“Hey, that’s cool,”—new character magically appears… “SQUIRREL!”—glass of water, check the email… 
Sound familiar? This frikkin’ defines me. Here’s how I fight it—and win—every damn day.

  • Fix Day-Week-Month Stalls
You’re moving along at a steady page, getting your daily word count…until you hit a story problem. And you stop to figure it out…only the quick stop turns into a day…a week, a month… This one is an EASY fix.

  • Conquer Wild Bob, The Plot Destroyer
So you have this out-of-control character, and he insists that your story is going to go HIS way, in spite of the fact that HIS way bears no resemblance to the story you want to write. You have some new alternatives to get him to toe the line. He won’t like them. But you will.

  • Create Lightning Conflict for Every Situation
Struggling with what conflict is, how it works, or how to get it into your story now? I once plotted an entire novel using JUST this trick. (Deadlines, again, and howling desperation).
  • Break the Perfectionist Freeze

    Can’t write anything because it doesn’t turn out perfect the first time through? Yeah. I remember that. You may have to repeat this exercise, but you’ll get wonderful first-draft words when you’re done.

And many more…

But not today. 😀 The rest will wait until the launch.

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