About rain — rainbows — writing — stories of wonder.

It's raining today. Sort of raining, just enough to get everything wet and make me not want to go outside and stand in it because I'd get chilled and soaked, though the ground will still be thirsty when it ends because it's not coming down hard. Still, considering we've been in a 'red flag' event …

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Does writing exhaust or energize you? What are some common traps for aspiring writers?

Both because writing is both exhausting and energizing. It all depends on what step I’m at in the process whether I mentally and emotionally sag or whether I look at what I’ve done or am doing and realize that it’s pretty good.   Traps for new writers? They are all mental: Thinking you’re not good …

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What’s the best way to approach writing the second draft of your novel?

 This is kind of a hard one. Everyone knows how to write a first draft. Just write it. But most novels published by major New York publishers go through 10 rewrites. Tenrewrites! That’s a lot of drafts. But one way to get started on that dreaded second draft is to refer back to the outline, mental …

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Another interesting factoid about black cats. (They are healthy.)

THE GENE THAT CAUSES BLACK FUR MIGHT MAKE THESE FELINES RESISTANT TO DISEASE. The mutation that causes a cat’s fur to be black is in the same genetic family as genes known to give humans resistance to diseases like HIV. So perhaps their color has less to do with camouflage than disease resistance. Scientists hope …

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Why sailors like cats. (And why I like them, too.)

Cats are sailors' best friends. Have been for hundreds of years. Not only were cats welcome aboard British vessels to hunt mice, but sailors generally thought  a black cat in particular would bring good luck and ensure a safe return home. A few of these kitties have been enshrined in maritime history. Tiddles traveled more than …

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Black Cats. Gotta love ’em.

There's a lot to love about these black, fur-balls as evidenced by holidays in their honor. What, you say? Holidays just for a specific color cat? Yep. The ASPCA celebrates Black Cat Appreciation Day annually on August 17. In England, October 27 is National Black Cat Day. I mention these because my latest clean small-town …

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As a writer, do you sometimes need reassurance that people care about your writing?

 The answer is ‘yes’ and ‘no.’ Because: Writers, like all creative types, appreciate reassurance that what they are doing resonates with others. (Who doesn’t?” At the same time, most writers prefer doing their own thing regardless of whether other people like it or not. (Again, who doesn’t?) I suspect that the difference between the two …

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I’m trying to write a plot line for a book but I keep on overthinking it and eventually hating them. How do I see it through to the end?

 Plotting is a science and the more you do it the better your plots will be. So hang in there. But — there are ways to do it that make the whole thing easier. This is only one way but it’s the way I use: 1. Describe your main character in 2 to 4 sentences. …

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WHY WE WRITE

Did you know? Written language was invented independently by the Egyptians, Sumerians, Chinese, and Mayans. ======================================================================= Which just goes to show that people from many cultures in widely differing parts of the world have felt compelled to write for a very long time. Including me, though I never realized that writing was a compulsion until …

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Can we change the order of writing the sections?

Writers can and do write in any order they feel like writing. Most writers who choose to skip around and write sections out of sequence make sure that they first outline the complete work so they won’t be writing scenes that later must be eliminated or changed because they don’t fit. They are more likely …

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