Most of my stories include elements based on real-life experiences, especially Galaxy Tales, where personal experiences got me interested in and writing Christian-themed stories. I also like to include subtle and sometimes not-so-subtle messages about topics of interest to me. Like Janet, above, I like to amp up the real-life elements on steroids when I fictionalize them. After all, I'm not writing an autobiography. In Galaxy Tales, I took that to ludicrous lengths, which provided the story's humor. With Rise of Connor I ignored Stephen King's advice and chose not to write what I know because the story idea really appealed to me. However, as you know, it's been a painful learning curve.


(4 replies, posted in New Novelists)

Welcome, Heidi. There's a Welcome thread in the Premium forum, which serves the same purpose as this thread. I suggest posting your message to that forum/thread as well. It will get you maximum exposure. This group was only recently resurrected, so it's still a little quiet, although we're happy to have you.

Feel free to join as many groups as you think might be of interest to you. That way, when there's activity in those groups' forums, you'll see it down the righthand side of your Home page. You don't need to read or respond to the forum posts (unless the spirit moves you), but at least you'll see the topics being posted. Admittedly, the site's forums are rather quiet.

Also, be sure to check out a thread in the Writing Tips & Site Help forum on tips for maximizing the number reviews you can get. It may help.

If you have any questions related to writing or the site, feel free to drop your questions in the Writing Tips & Site Help forum. Someone is sure to respond, usually in under a few hours. For more timely responses, feel free to post your questions to the Premium forum. They don't bite. Usually. :-)

Again, welcome.


(4 replies, posted in Writing Tips & Site Help)

Perhaps pick five or six of the best and put those at the top of the chapter. Also, google some of the keywords in the rules to see if you get any other website hits. It's possible that whoever posted the rules got them from somewhere else without acknowledging having done so.

Try messaging SolN directly.


(20 replies, posted in TheNextBigWriter Premium)

jack the knife wrote:

Personally, I prefer a physical book to read, but then again, I’m not planning any road trips in the future.

No road trips planned to promote your book? :-)


(20 replies, posted in TheNextBigWriter Premium)

Great news, Jack. Congratulations.



(10 replies, posted in Writing Tips & Site Help)

I use "you folks".


(10 replies, posted in Writing Tips & Site Help)

I know someone who grew up in Texas and Tennessee. He uses y'all all the time.

It is painful, but the above approach is as close as I can come to actual purgatory yet still allow Beneventi to play his role in the story. Jack pointed out the need for this character since he provides humor, something I plan to increase in the next draft. He'll be like Gimli in the Lord of the Rings movies.

Had a really cool idea to have the Antichrist maintain a library of 220 years of writing, including a series of journals, all of which are discovered in the demon safe house in chapter six. I may include excerpts from the journals at the beginning of each chapter, revealing details of the conspiracy.

Thank you, all.


(2 replies, posted in Fantasy, Magic, and Sci-fi)

Definitely needs a scene break if you want to stick with third-person limited, which involves one POV character per scene. The other way you can do it is to tell everything from Mr. Handsome's POV. For example, right after the biker takes off, a police car appears behind Handsome and orders him to pull over (using his car's loudspeaker). As the officer walks toward the Bobcat, Handsome hears the cop talking to dispatch over his shoulder-mounted radio. You should be able to do the exact same scene, but now you stay with Handsome's perspective.

By the way, if you're in Handsome's POV, he would think of himself by name (e.g., the way Campagna and Romano do in my story). Of course, if you want to make Handsome super conceited, he could think of himself as God's gift to women, which is why he doesn't think of himself by name. Perhaps he sees a couple of women on the street, then looks in the mirror thinking they're attracted to his good looks, then the biker pulls up, and Handsome decides to show off to the women by racing the biker.

Great news, Mike. Congratulations.



(25 replies, posted in TheNextBigWriter Premium)

At a minimum, change the locks. And maybe get an alarm system, if you can afford one.


(6 replies, posted in TheNextBigWriter Premium)

Welcome, Neil. Be sure to check out a forum post in the Writing Tips & Site Help group on how to maximize the number of reviews you receive. Also, since you're interested in sci-fi, you may want to join the Fantasy, Magic, and Sci-fi group, where us nerds hang out. You have to be a member of groups in order to see their forum posts displayed on the right-hand panel of your home page.


Even if he doesn't reconnect with the Holy Spirit, people attain internal satisfaction from doing charitable works. As noted above, it's his internal substitute for the Holy Spirit, although, obviously, he hopes to reconnect with the Holy Spirit as well.

His support of Connor's quest could also be part of his own quest to re-establish his connection to the Holy Spirit. He thinks Connor may be God or someone sent by God, so who better to help than Connor in order to re-establish his connection?

Him wanting to reconnect with the Holy Spirit doesn't strike me as a useful goal. He has no idea why he can't hear the Holy Spirit, nor how to change that.

Romano cares about others (Connor, Beneventi) and is driven to help them. That seems like both an internal goal and an external one. I could see representing those goals as alternatives for the joy he once experienced with his connection to the Holy Spirit. He seeks external satisfaction as a substitute for the internal satisfaction he once had.

Except that the eagles attack the Nazgul at the end of the third film. Send 20 eagles against 9 Nazgul, and Frodo's home in time for second dinner.

Just re-watched the Fellowship of the Ring, which is one of my favorite movies. However, the question is: Why didn't Gandalf simply summon one of the great eagles to fly Frodo to Mount Doom? :-)

With my memory and limited concentration, I would easily screw up, accidentally revealing that they are one and the same author. I'd rather "fix" Galaxy Tales and market everything under one pen name. Of course, that only matters if both books are successful. Otherwise, no one is going to give a rat's petard that they are written by the same author. The worst of the violence/gore in Galaxy Tales can be toned down, although the irreverence related to the latter book's treatment of mental illness and religion will be much harder to "fix" and still tell basically the same story.

I always use third person narrators.


(13 replies, posted in Fantasy, Magic, and Sci-fi)

I just noticed the ears of the leftmost feline end in a point, while the one in the middle look more like those of teddy bear.
Oh, and unlike Bobbie, I like the red. It creates a nice contrast to the fuzzy image and should read well in thumbnail size.

Clearly the Force is with you. Congratulations.

The new server is a test server, George.