Well, I had an unexpected day off from work due to weather, so I worked on my jigsaw puzzle.
The arctic vortex is sitting over much of the northern hemisphere dropped outdoor temperatures to well below 0 Fahrenheit (-20c) or worse with the wind chill twenty to -50-60f (-45c) in many areas, keeping me indoors today.
Over the holidays, my girlfriend/partner gave me a jigsaw puzzle as a gift. I don’t know whether to be ecstatic over the thoughtfulness of the gift or cringe by the vast time it’s taking to solve the jigsaw puzzle.
But first, let me backup.
Last fall, we went over to a friend’s house for dinner and conversation, catching up since we last saw each other. At that occasion, our friends had a jigsaw puzzle of their own they were working on. Interested, and with their permission, I found and placed a few pieces and thought nothing of it. more “Jigsaw Puzzle”…
Good afternoon all. It’s the Sunday before Labor Day here in the United States. For those who don’t know, Labor Day is a holiday celebrating the workers in America. It is always on the first Monday in September. It is also the unofficial end of the summer season.
Just yesterday, I noticed fall and Halloween decor in the stores. Damn, I commented to myself. My full-time job gives me little time to enjoy the summers. For the last month, I worked my ass off getting ready for next week. It’s not important as to why, but trust me, it was.
On July 31, I was sweating bullets thinking that I couldn’t get all my work done in time. I was distraught that there was just too much to do. Somehow, along with my co-workers, we pulled it off.
When my shift ended on Friday, I was content. What I needed to do had the big [ DONE ] stamp on it with big RED letters. Whew.
So, now, I’m enjoying the time off. I’ve slept in both days, and I plan on doing it again tomorrow. I met with friends on Friday night, had a couple of beers over good food and great conversation. Yesterday, I caught up at home, sweeping the floors, dusting, and well, all of that housekeeping that no one wants to do but we have to do anyway.
I also wrote a scene for my next book, and since I couldn’t stop there, and did some massive editing. By the end of the day, I had written and edited 6,800 words, in a scene that I absolutely love. Chatting about it with my girlfriend, she’s excited and can’t wait to read the final version of the book. I’m excited about this book, and I believe you will be too.
This morning, I wrote another 2,800 words in an initial draft of another scene. It’s unrefined and choppy, but it is just an initial draft. When incorporated into the book, I will flesh it out and use it to draw the reader into the character. Her name is Misty, and her life is about to take a sharp left turn. I’m smiling as I write this.
Later, I am meeting another pair of friends for dinner, which promises to be fun. Tomorrow, I plan on sleeping in again, shake off the hangover from tonight, and write some more. Then, there is my new website design. I like it, but I don’t like it enough. I’m debating about releasing it now and then updating it again, or work on the design more and release it later. I’m leaning towards the former, but we’ll see. My job and my writing are my focus at the moment.
Good Day Everyone. Looking at my site, I just realized that I haven’t posted in a week. I knew it had been a while, but I didn’t know that it was that long. Sorry about that.
To tell you the truth, I’ve been seeing a lot of doctors and going to Physical Therapy (PT) lately. I’m working on my post-concussion issues, and I have made some progress and learned a few things. The two biggest things that I learned are:
I’m still not ready to go back to work. (Shit!)
I’m dwelling too much on my headaches and other issues, and not enough on life.
Number 1 scared me until I learned about number 2. I must accept it and deal with it while living my life. I’m sure that my colleagues at work won’t be happy with number 1, but I’m not in control of that aspect of my life. ‘It is what it is.’ As I write this, David Bowie’s ‘Space Oddity’ is playing in the background and I just realized that I identify with many of the verses in the song.
To deal with number 2, I’ve been advised to change things up in my life. Change the venue so to speak. What does that mean? Well, for one thing, get out of the house more often. Now that the holidays are over, I can do that on my terms rather than on someone else’s terms.
My psychologist asked me an important question. “What are your go to items that make you happy?”
An easy answer for once, “Drawing and Painting, Writing, and Sharing intimate time with my girlfriend.” (I don’t necessarily mean sex, but that’s an important part.)
The problem is that all are suffering. I don’t yet have my painting studio setup which prevents me from putting paint to canvas. My injury stopped me from working on it for several months. I muddle through it at times, but I usually ran out of steam before getting far. I’m now motivated to get it done.
Then there is the writing. Without my creative stream running through my head, I am struggling to come up with a storyline. What I do know is that last October, I put pencil to paper and came up with several new compositions that I am very happy with. Drawing them put me in a headspace that made me happy and I forgot about my chronic headache. Checking my headache logs, I discovered that during those days and the following weeks, my headaches were relatively mild. And guess what? That’s when I had my inspiration for ‘The Trafficking Consortium.’ Writing it consumed me, and after looking at the logs, the headaches never surpassed a four on a scale of zero to ten. What do you know?
I can draw almost anywhere and yet; I prefer either my studio or my office. They represent my personal space and allow me to dive in without distractions. Until last night, my office was not configured to allow me to draw easily. It is now. 😉 Starting later today or tomorrow, I’ll finish a piece I started months ago and move on. Perhaps that will be the avenue to find inspiration for a new story. In fact, I’m betting on it.
That leaves the last of my goto’s, my girlfriend. Due to my injury and other issues, which I am not going to go into, our relationship has been strained. She is concerned about my condition and often frustrated that she can’t help. So, I was advised to change things up, do things differently and do it in new environments.
So, change the venue, right? Last night, the two of us went for a walk around my neighborhood. The first time since last fall. I usually do it alone. It was nice. Later today, we’re planning on doing a couple of errands together and then go to the movies. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen a movie in a theater. I’m looking forward to it. We’ve also made plans to go out more, see friends in other venues, rather than have them come to our house. I’m also looking forward to playing cribbage or other games together which we’ve not done since last summer. Playing games at the table gets us away from the TV, and conversing in an intimate setting which is something I crave.
What does all this mean to you, my fans and followers of my blog and readers of my books? Despite what my marketer muse has told me, I’m going to stop forcing myself to write a daily blog. It is stressful to think of topics to write that you are interested in and it takes time away from life, my girlfriend, and my happy place. But don’t fret, I will write you at least weekly and maybe more as things settle down. Yes, it will be true that I will miss your interactions and responding to your comments. You can comment all you like. I will read, and I will write back.
In the meantime, just know that I love and appreciate all of you. Thank you for your support and reading my books. Be sure to look for my latest novel ‘The Trafficking Consortium,’ which I will be publishing on Amazon in early Feb.
Good afternoon all you fans. I write to you today as a frustrated writer who may now see the light at the end of the tunnel. Why do you ask?
Since August, most of my posts have failed to make it to my email followers. While it royally sucked, the resolution may be in the works.
The publishing company that handles distribution of my posts to all of my followers uploaded a patch to server yesterday. This company handles all distributions, including social media as well as my email subscribers. So far, two days in a row, my email followers have received my posts. Whoo hoo!
However, I must admit, I am still hesitant to say that they fixed the problem. Only time will tell.
One good thing that came out of all this. I was forced to find a simple type of post that followers would like to read, rather than just the same only ‘buy me’ crap that often happened. That is when I stumbled upon the Word of the Day feature. It’s a hit as I have received many positive responses to my posts. Most of the responses tell me that they particularly like the ‘My Take’ portion, which I love doing, and it doesn’t take a whole lot of time. Time that I am using to writing my next story.
So, be on the lookout for my next novel, that I hope to publish next month. It’s tentatively called ‘The Trafficking Consortium.’ The story is inline with the ‘Her Client’ but with many differences as well. If you liked any of my previous novels, you’ll love this one.
Now, a big thank you to everyone who is buying my books. Sales for the ‘Her Client’ series is phenomenal, as well as I have seen an increase in sales of my other books ‘The Taste of Honey,’ ‘Broken Steele,’ and ‘The Breakup.’ A big thank you to each and every one of you who bought and read them. Please, do me a favor. Write a review on the site from where you purchased the book(s). It would to a lot of good to get the word out.
Thanks for being patient with my publicizing problem. And, oh, by the way, winter is still here. Snow is on the ground as we had a record snowfall on Sunday, blowing the old record away by 300%. Wow. Now, if I could only blow away my sales by 300%, I could retire and write full-time. Hey, it’s all up to you, the reader. Thank you for your support.
A new fantastic review of ‘The Taste of Honey’ appeared on Amazon the other day. Thank you Reenie K for your comments. I do appreciate them. BTW, I hope your prophecy comes true. Wouldn’t that be something. Gotta keep writing, that’s all there is to it.
I also want to thank all of my readers out there who continue to buy my books. It’s really nice to see the sales charts documenting all of the hits. What’s really cool is to see the numbers not just from Amazon but the other eBook retailers out there, including Smashwords, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, Kobo to name a few. Thank you to each and everyone of you.
Thanks too to my loving girlfriend and partner in crime. She puts up with a lot to help me get these posts and stories out. I have two projects going at once and sometimes, I hole up in my office writing, leaving her to wander the rest of the house doing who knows what.
After months of little rain, we finally experienced significant rain as well as a few thunderstorms over the last couple of days. It is a welcome relief. I love my thunderstorms. Every chance I get, I sit in the safety of my garage and watch the light show around me as the wind drives bullet sized rain onto the ground. Weather wise, I love living in the northeast U.S. Our weather is mild compared to the rest of the country yet diverse enough that I am never bored.
Finally, a quick report. A month ago tomorrow, as many of you know, I suffered a severe concussion. I saw a galaxy of stars in that moment. While I am progressing, I am still not past it yet. Constant headaches, fatigue and short term memory loss are still an issue. I am back to work, though on half days. That’s good. I need the job to support my writing. I see Doc again this week and I can’t help wonder what will come out the other side. Crossing my fingers.
It’s been a good week overall and I am looking forward to the coming weeks ahead. How about you? Are you in a good space? Either way, feel free to comment. I look forward to reading them. I am Richard Verry, reporting to you from my home office, drinking my first cup of coffee. Delish.
Yesterday, I wrote about goals without a plan is nothing more than a wish. In fact, I believe it’s more than that. It’s wishful thinking.
However, once you have the plan, you are already on the road to meeting your goals. For me, that’s the fun part. Taking the first step, then the next and then, the next one again. I’ve always believed that to reach the summit, you must put one foot in front of the other. Step over over the pebbles and eventually you’ll step over the stone, and eventually the mountain.
Earlier, I stumbled upon this followup quote.
“There’s no elevator to success. You have to take the stairs.”
Makes sense to me, despite that I wish that it were possible to jump ahead of the line and go right to the top.
The image I’ve displayed shows the quote surrounded by a spiraling stair case. I can’t imagine how many steps it would take to climb that stair case and reach the top. Hundreds? Thousands?
However many there are, in real life, it takes much more to achieve our goals. My goals. I’ve spent decades learning, experiencing, and experimentation before deciding upon my goals. Some of my goals have fallen to the wayside in favor of newer, more interesting goals.
Do you know what I find if fun? Working on my goals, figuring them out and taking the steps to achieve them. For me, it’s sitting down in front of my computer and transcribing the dialog running through my head. It’s picking up a pencil or paint brush and putting it to paper or canvas. Adrenaline begins racing throughout my body. I’m excited and the imagery in my mind feeds off the adrenaline and suddenly, my fingers can’t move fast enough. Whether it’s typing on a keyboard or stroke after stroke of my pencil or brush, I pour my heart and soul into each creative work.
Years later, I can look at a painting I did, notice one of my books on the shelves and the excitement returns in an immeasurable instant. Every so often, I review Honey’s story in my book, ‘The Taste of Honey‘, and I’m filled with joy, wonderment and concern. I want her to be saved. I want her to thrive. I know that she has a goal in mind and that goal will survive death. She’ll make it happen. She has a plan. You’ll see as you delve into her world along with her best friend, Mona Bendarova.
Damn, I love what I do. I hope you do and if you don’t, well that’s okay too. You’re welcome to your opinion. Who am I to tell you what to think. So, to conclude, I hope I can instill this one thought and it’s a motto I’ve lived with my entire life. As far as I can tell, no one else has said this and I’ve repeated the mantra in my head every day of my adult life, and I’ve been around a while. I would be interested in your comments and responses. Please send me a note. I’ll be happy to read them.
My personal motto is this.
“Nothing is impossible. Everything is possible. It’s all in the attitude.” – Richard Verry
I was poking around this morning, wondering what I might write about and I stumbled across this quote.
“A goal without a plan is simply a wish.” CalamusWorks
I can’t think of a day in my life where I hadn’t chosen a goal without establishing a plan. It seems natural to me. I make plans almost without conscious thought.
Take for example my recent move from my old home to my new one. Once the decision was made, I started developing the plan to make it happen and as efficiently as possible. It took months to make it happen but it did. Whenever I leave the house to do a number of errands, I don’t just get in my car and go. Instead, as I’m buckling in, I plan my route to be as efficient as possible. That means, go from one destination to another without crossing my path. Some people say I’m being ridiculous. Though I can see their point, I don’t agree. Gasoline is expensive and I don’t want to waste it by retracing my route.
When it comes to writing and painting, I also have a plan but those seem to be much more fluid in nature. It drives me crazy but I have to keep adjusting the plan as each day goes by. I know what my end goal is and I have plan to get there. However, I keep coming across so many unknowns and interruptions that I find it hard to stay on the path (plan).
Sometimes, it is simple fatigue. Sometimes someone needs my assistance and I’m glad to help. Sometimes obligations get in the way. Not that I don’t want to live up to my obligations. I do, though sometimes I wish they didn’t exist. I accepted them so I will make sure I deliver.
These and many more tend to pull me away from following the plan to writing success.
Which raises the question. With any goal and the plan that makes it happen, what is the measure of success in reaching that goal? Buying and house and moving, seems easy enough. Sign the closing papers and move in. Run an errand?
What is my measure of success in reaching my goal of becoming a well-known and successful author and painter? I have to give that some more thought. That too seems to be fluid. I want to be successful, I need to define what it means to be a successful author and painter.
Stay tuned. I’ll let you know what I come up with.
They say one’s home is their castle. I can’t help wonder about the truth in the statement.
The home I used to live in, the one I recently sold and moved from, used to be my castle. I loved my home. I did not envision leaving it any time soon. In fact, I was sure I would still be living there at least six more years. Instead, it’s now sold to new owners. Someone else is living with all of the upgrades I did along the way as well as with its issues that all homes have. It’s their castle now.
What I don’t understand is why I have moved on as I have. I have no interest in driving by to see what the new owners are doing. I heard from my moving company that the very same crew I used to move out was contract to move the new owners in. Small world? No, I don’t think so. I suspect how that happened and I don’t think it was a coincidence. It’s a local firm, not a national chain with a very good reputation in the area. http://sheridanbrothersmoving.com/ If you are moving, local or not and live in my area, check them out.
My new home is my castle now. It’s a nice home and I’m sure one day, I’ll come to love it as I did the old one. Sure, I love this home but as in all relationships, its different. I still don’t understand all its subtleties, all the things that make it unique and different from another house. Like a lover. You love your current partner, girlfriend, boyfriend, whatever. You love them deeply and would do anything for them. They are the best part of your life and complete you in ways that you want and desire. Yet, that does mean you didn’t love your previous lover any less. Just differently. Regardless of how or why you have a new lover, your love for them was just as deep. It was just different. At least, this is how I see the world. Perhaps you do to.
So, I have a new home. It’s my castle. I love it now and as time goes by, I’m confident that I will love it more. For better or worse, it’s my castle and I’ve pleased to be sharing it with my lover, partner and best friend. Love you maggical.
Now, for those of you that know my perversion for Halloween, whatever am I going to do to celebrate Halloween?
Apologies to all my followers. I know I have been quiet of late, posting updates on an irregular schedule. It’s been a whirlwind during the last month or so. You see, I’ve moved my home.
Not that my home is on wheels and I can just drive it down the road. No, I sold my old house and bought a new one. I thought the whole thing would happen over a number of months. That was not to be. Instead, it all happened within the space of under a single month.
Last January, I put in an offer on a new home which was accepted. So far, so good. The house closed at the end of March and I was free to begin moving in. Figuring I had time enough, I planned the move to happen over six weeks, taking my time, staging the old one and being out of my old one long before I needed to be when the new owners took possession.
The day after I closed on my new home, the old home was put on the market. Within 24 hours, a single showing and little time to breathe, I received a FULL CASH non-contingent offer with closing to happen in only a few weeks. If it wasn’t for the lawyers involved, it might have been done even sooner. Thank you lawyers, at least you gave me time to get everything in place.
So then I had a big problem. A good problem for sure, who wouldn’t want CASH up front. It’s a beautiful thing. Over the next two weeks, I had to pack up the rest of the house, get the hell out, and move all the stuff that goes with one’s domicile.
I’m pleased to report that I am now safely in my new home, still unpacking, and still settling in. Organizing the move has been the only thing on my mind for over a month now. I’ve barely written 2000 words in any of my stories in all that time. My internet service had been discounted for several days as well. By the end of each day, I was exhausted, worn out, and barely functional to eat a meal. Too many restaurants of late, nearly falling asleep in my dinner plate. Thank you all you restaurant workers and servers for taking care of me during this time.
I hope to get back to writing soon. I have the start of my new office in the works, a new writing desk, and a new coffee mug labeled ‘Go Away, I’m Writing’ which was a sweet gift from my girlfriend and life partner. I hope to get back to more consistent writing soon. I’ll take a picture of my new office soon. There are still so many boxes to unpack, finding homes for all the little things that make me feel warm and comfortable.
In the meantime, I’m going to try hard to resume more consistent blogging and keeping you updated. In my next blog, I hope to give you more insights into why I didn’t mention this move sooner. I had a wicked thought but you’ll have to wait to find out what that was.
I’m curious. Do you re-read your favorite books? Would you ever even think of re-reading a book? Has the idea of re-reading a book ever crossed your mind?
I do. Over the years, I’ve re-read my favorites many times over. Books from my younger years are favorite re-reads. Many I’ve kept in my personal library, moving them from home to home over the decades. Others, I check out of the public library or lately, buy the eBook version even though I have the paperback or hard copy of the book.
They are my friends, my companions, and never once have they ever disappointed me. I’ve never regretted reading them. I’ve never regretted re-reading them. When I re-read a book, I realize a new innuendo to the story that I hadn’t realized before. It’s amazing. I still learn something from these books years after I last read them.
What are your favorite books or stories? Here are a few of mine.
As I wrote awhile back, I am a sci-fi, erotic, mystery & suspense, and paranormal aficionado. My all time favorite author in the genre is Robert Heinlein. Kim Harrison, the author of the ‘The Hollows’ series, is another favorite. Charlaine Harris, the author of the ‘Sookie Stackhouse’ books and later ported to HBO’s ‘True Blood’ is among my all-time favorites. An obscure favorite later made into a movie, is ‘The Harrad Experiment’ by Robert H. Rimmer. To this day, I wish I had been one of the students in that story.
Another favorite is ‘Logan’s Run’, a cheesy movie but the book was so much better. In fact, I remember writing a similar short story years before this book came out. Of course, I was still in primary school at the time. I’m sure it’s just a freak coincidence.
Tess Gerritsen is an author I enjoy reading again and again. So are John Grisham, ‘Along Came a Spider’, and the early works by Tom Clancy such as ‘Patriot Games’. There are many, many others.
However, I do have a problem. There are so many new books and authors that I enjoy following, that it’s getting harder to enjoy these older books again and again. Do you have the same problem? Or, do you just wing it and read the next thing that captures your fancy?
Then there is the problem of the books and stories that I write. I love them dearly. A bit of my soul is in each of them and again, I like to re-read them as well. What am I to do?
She writes about the difference in pushing a book upon the audience and pulling them to the book. She makes a lot of sense. It’s a lesson I am slowly learning. In reading her commentary, I couldn’t help but smile and agree. My social media feeds are full of book covers, promotions and statements that boil down to one message. BUY ME. Sorry, but like Delilah, I skip right over them as I scroll across my feeds. About the only time I stop and look is to study the message and see if there is something in it to pull me in. I’m usually disappointed and move on.
For me, the single most important line in Delilah’s post is:
“The recipe seems to be GREAT BOOK + HARD WORK + TIME + LUCK.”
I can control three out of four of them and I hope I am lucky enough to rise enough to be truly noticed.
I will be the first to admit, that I’m not very good budgeting my time with my writing. I spend way too much time screwing around trying to make a name for myself, promoting my stories and I am not spending enough time writing the stories that I really love. I have outlines for more than a dozen waiting to be written. Argggghhhhh.
I must do something about that. I need to get back to creative writing.
Case in point.
Until recently, I promoted my ‘Mona Bendarova Adventures’ much in the way Delilah hates. They didn’t sell. Watching their performance, I found that my efforts were wasted and might have even pushed my audience away from me. I pulled the promotions altogether.
Another series of books I wrote, ‘Her Client Trilogy’, sell well enough to make me smile. Sales are not fantastic, in fact, they are mediocre when compared to my favorite authors. Yet, to me, they make me happy. There’s not a day that goes by where I don’t seen multiple sales of the books. Whoo hoo!
The funny thing is, which surprises me to no end, I do no promotion of the books. They sell on many platforms, all over the world. What I know is that they are a product of ‘Hard Work’, a ‘Good Story’, and lots of ‘Time’ writing and polishing the stories.
I am still trying to figure out the formula. I suspect that as soon as I do, the formula will have already changed.
So, I’m going back to writing, creatively and writing what I love.
I recently came across this quote from Mr. Clemens and it gave me pause to think. The more I thought about it, the more I realized that he is so right.
“The difference between the right word and the almost-right word is the difference between lightning and a lightning bug.” — Mark Twain
However, I find it difficult to find the right word at times. The thesaurus is my best friend. I keep it handy and refer to it many times as I write. I scour on-line versions as well as a printed copy. I jump from word to word searching for the right one.
And yet, after racking my brain, time and time again, I sometimes can’t find just the right word to convey the meaning I want. When I get stuck, I’ll ask those around me. Otherwise, I’ll tag it and put it off until later.
Does this happen to you? If so, what do you do to get around it? I would love to read your comments on this topic. In the meantime, have a great day and keep on writing!
For the last couple of days, someone who many of you know, alright, my friend Leah Hart, has been teaching me to write story blurbs. At first, I didn’t understand the term ‘blurb’ in the context of my books. Even that, she had to drill into me.
It’s been a hard road for me and fraught with stress and frustration. I woke up this morning feeling like I was back in grammar school and earning a failing grade on my assignments. Crap! I even went into work this morning telling the story and describing my feelings. Normally, a ‘B+’ or ‘A’ student, I felt I had earned nothing more that a ‘D’. It was agonizing.
Part of me kept saying to myself, “Just write the damn thing for me. I’ll then use it as a model for the future.” And yet, she held back, probably shaking her head in her own frustration over my lack of progress.
I believe I’m good at writing stories and plot concepts. I also know that I suck at marketing, selling and that talent one has in getting someone to buy. I’ve met a lot of people over the years who could sell snow to a polar bear. Me? I’ve never had that talent. Which is why I hire people to help me.
Yet, I am aware enough that until I can get a major publisher to pick up my contract or get a movie producer to buy the movie rights to my stories, I have to do much of it myself. As much as I struggle in learning this talent, I know I need to do it.
I need to fish rather than have the fish handed to me. I can’t help wishing it could be different but for now, that is not to be.
So, I’m back to school and studying the techniques Leah and others have been trying to pound into my head.
OUCH! That hurts. I jest as I rub the back of my head. It does hurt and I’m not too shy to say it. It does and I appreciate those that help me fish. Thank you Leah. Thank you to all of my mentors, whether I know you personally or whether you’re one of the hundreds of articles I have read on the topic.
This is Richard Verry, reporting to you live from the single room school house all alone and with lots of homework to do.
This morning, I read a post on Facebook by my friend Leah Hart about an experience she recently had. In that post she revealed that two days ago, she had a terrific idea for a new novel. At the time, it was crystal clear in her head and she knew exactly what to do to write it.
However, she’s also a terrific wife and mother. At the time, her young children were ill and needed her mothering, which she gladly supplied. Family first. I get it and I agree completely. After tending to her children, helping them get through their discomfort, she took a moment for herself to write down her ideas.
Those ideas are now what I call ‘vaporware’. In tending to her children, the story idea didn’t get a chance to imprint itself onto her brain, and the brain did what normally does. It cleaned house.
Our brains are wonderful organs. They capture and store significant amounts of information. Information that we use each and every day. It also stores memories, experiences and all sorts of stuff so that we can learn from our mistakes and improve our every day lives.
The trouble is, our brains also have only so much capacity. Granted, some brains have more than others. Still, it’s a fact that if we don’t use those thoughts and apply them to our lives when they first bounce around in our noggins, then our brains are trained to clear them away to make room for new stuff.
It sucks. I know all too well. I have been a victim of this phenomena many times over.
I used to keep a notepad on me all the time to write these notes down for followup later. The result as you might guess, page after page, notebook after notebook of ideas that clutter up my home and rarely get referred to. So, then I tried using a white board. I have it prominently mounted in my home office where I do the bulk of my creative work. As I walk by, I can glance at it and recall at an instance, just what that idea was. ‘Better’. That board is so full of notes that it’s hard to see the white behind the black of the dry erase marker. Now, it’s almost a chore to keep it up to date and if anyone knows me, I hate doing chores. I do them, but I hate it.
With the advent of the smart phone, ‘Siri and Ok Google’ where speech to text has evolved to be practical, I began using the ‘speech to text’ features of my smart phone to capture and write down ideas. Much better and almost doable. I have my phone set up so that as I dictate my notes, those notes are written down and uploaded to my cloud account.
It works though I do have a funny story to go with it. One day, I was sitting in a café eating lunch, when an idea flashed through my brain. Great. A perfect opportunity to write down my idea. I whipped out my phone and tapped the icon. Who doesn’t keep their phone with them at all times? As soon as I did, I opened my mouth to begin speaking when lo and behold, I saw words appearing on my screen. And I wasn’t talking. Huh? Turns out the microphone was so sensitive that it was picking up the conversation of the people at the next table over. Wow! I thought. How cool is that. I was reading on my phone what they were talking about. All the personal details of their lives were being captured, converted to text and uploaded to my cloud account. I erased them but still ….
Since that day, I am careful to watch what I say, not just to the people whom I am sitting with but also to the strangers at the tables nearby. Word to the wise!
What have I concluded from these experiences my brain captures every second of every day? I get up at 4 o’clock in the morning and write. Many of my best ideas, dialog and scenes appear in my mind while I am in that half awake / half asleep state. I’ve trained my mind that if those ideas are good enough, to get the hell out of bed and write it down.
The scene, dialog, whatever won’t be perfect and will need editing. But, I’ve captured the idea and I can use it productively.
So, in the evening and right after dinner, when I seem to be checking out, my eyes drooping and it’s obvious I am looking for my bed, just know this. My day started at 4am and it’s been very productive. By 8pm, I’m tired, run down and ready to shutdown for the night. It sucks some days but that’s the way it is.
And oh, btw way. I started writing this about 5am, about a half hour after I woke up with an idea and I saw Leah’s post. Oh, shit. What was that idea that I had at 4am anyway?
Woke up this morning with even more snow on the ground. Still not enough to justify having the snow plow clean out my driveway. I don’t know which is worse, having a lot of snow or just enough to make driving treacherous.
Don’t get me wrong, I like snow and I don’t worry about driving in it. I’ve driven a car or truck most of my life and I consider myself a good driver. Still, a thin layer of snow seems to me to be more dangerous than a significant snow fall.
Why? I don’t think most drivers understand just how dangerous it can be. That thin layer easily converts to ice or worse black ice. For those who don’t know, black ice is prevalent in western NY and consists of a slippery thin layer of frozen water that is impossible to see. It’s so thin that one does realize that they are on it until they spin-out. It’s slippery as hell.
So, what’s the best way to deal with it? Go slow or don’t go out at all. Me? I don’t care what you do, just don’t lose control and smash into me. Stay home had have a hot chocolate, a glass of wine or a stiff drink.
What would Mona do? Well, she would either stay home and have that drink, enjoy the company of her household members or enjoy a good romp in the bed. If she had to drive, she would keep her wits about her and allow the road conditions dictate her speed. Better yet, as a senior member of her house, she would have someone else do all the driving while she sat in the back, enjoying the ride.
I’ll be enjoying the snow from the comfort of my living room, a nice drink in my hand and a fire burning in the fireplace. Enjoy the evening everyone. And for those south of the equator, enjoy the summer sun.
Of course I do. I feel that I am the most normal guy one could meet.
Sometimes, my girlfriend has a different opinion. From reading, editing to discussing my books and novellas, she thinks I’m something different. I suppose and hope that is why she likes me. Just to remind everyone, we’ve been together for over twelve years.
Having said all that, let’s get back to the question. I spoke recently about the imagery that flies around in my head all day. I suppose that makes me different, since I am convinced that most others don’t have those experiences yet abnormal? No way!
Webster’s Dictionary defines normal as:
a: according with, constituting, or not deviating from a norm, rule, or principle b: conforming to a type, standard, or regular pattern
occurring naturally <normal immunity>
a: of, relating to, or characterized by average intelligence or development b: free from mental disorder
When I compare myself to Webster, if there is any question, then by definition, I am normal. While I am unique, I also personally know hundreds of people and by extrapolation, millions who think like me and enjoy similar interests as I do and follow the same shows, hobbies and genres. In so many ways I conform to standards and patterns that society expects of me. I work for a living, pay my taxes, maintain my own home, take the garbage out and enjoy a daily shower. That last is really important.
My mother carried and delivered me naturally, though she told me later that I almost killed her as I wanted to come out sideways. She tells me that they had to push me back in, turn me around before delivering me. Does that make me abnormal? No, I don’t believe so. Breech births do happen. Of what I know now, if I was born more than a hundred years ago, neither me, mom or my sisters might not be around. Medicine back then wouldn’t be equipped to handle the difference from a normal birth.
Am I categorized as of having average intelligence? I think so. I definitely know that there are people smarter than myself and others who are not. That makes me normal.
That leaves ‘free of mental disorder’. That’s a subjective term in so … many ways. While I know that there is scientific, medical definitions of various mental disorders, no one has ever accused or diagnosed me of having one.
I can only conclude I am normal. What about you? Do you consider yourself normal? If so, why? If not, really? I want to hear from you. Perhaps I can turn your story into a book. We should chat. You can use the comment section below to get started. I would so enjoy hearing your story.
With the holidays winding down and I recover from a bad cold and too much food and drink, I would like to take the opportunity to thank the people who have helped me on my journey this year.
First off, thank you to the love of my life, Janet. She has put up with a lot of my shit this past year. Even though she grumbles and frets, she knows that I’m no slouch and what I have been trying to do this past year is for her benefit, as well as mine. I love her so much and I appreciate everything she has ever done or will do for me.
I would like to thank my sister Jean for simply believing in me. She struggles to understand and feels remorse when she can’t support me when I ask. I rarely ask anything of her, just preferring her love. Usually, she is the first in line to help yet this past year, I asked her for something that was important to me. Much to my surprise, she didn’t know how to tell me that she couldn’t and it severely distressed and anguished her. Through her tears, I retracted my request. Our love for each other is more important.
Then there’s Leah. I don’t remember how I found her yet this fine lady has found a way to boost my confidence and help me grow. She is putting me on the right path to being a successful writer. I’ve never met her but I almost think of her as family.
Then there are those who I consider my best friends these many years who wish to remain nameless in this forum. I look forward to spending time with them soon. One of these friends has been helping me develop my story-lines. Because of her generosity, she is now a recurring character in the next major novel I am writing. She’s a loving, spiritual person who is working hard on her latest business venture. I wish her much success and try to support her as best I can in this endeavor. Another friend is busy working on her upcoming marriage and I know she is there if I need her. I can’t wait to attend her wedding. It will be the highlight of the year.
I’m also thankful to my employer. Anything that needs to be done, I am willing to do. No problemo. I’ve been jobless and hungry before and I never want to experience that ever again.
As I write this, I am realizing that there are many other people who have helped me throughout the past year. I am grateful and very appreciative to all. In my head, I hear the orchestra playing the ‘Get Off the Fucking Stage’ music as if I was giving a speech at an awards ceremony. You get the idea. So in closing, thank you one and all. I hope I get the chance to tell you in person the next time I see you.
Happy New Year! May 2016 be a great one.
To find out more about me and read my blogs, check out my website, RichardVerry.com.
You’ll note that the image I’ve used for this post is one where the year is scratched into the sand.
It’s beach sand and I wonder, will it be washed away from the surf, scraped away by some angry foot or harden and turn to stone for all eternity.
I wish that 2016 will be a superb year, filled with promise and hope for the future of our species. If anything, the past several years makes me wonder whether we as a species will be around a millennium from now. I wonder. There seems to be so much hate in the world, closed-minded people who insist that everyone believe and act as they do, whether we as a species can surmount these challenges and boldly move forward into the 21st century.
Even if we do survive to the 22nd and 23rd centuries, what will they say about our current period on this planet. I can’t help wonder that they would say “Just how the hell did the species survive?”
Mona and Honey live sometime in the next millennium, 35th century perhaps, and somehow, their community has figured out a way to accept each other for whom they are. They are opened minded enough to realize that all members of our species have something to contribute to society as a whole.
Let’s see if we can emulate their example and accept that each of us, have something to contribute to the global community.
If you have a greeting or a wish you wish to extend to someone, please feel free to share it here. I’ll be happy to repost it to all of my followers. In the meantime, may 2016 be a great one for you.
As the year 2015 winds down and as we prepare to welcome 2016, I plan on remembering both the good and the bad that happened in my life this past year.
If there is any one thing I’ve learned this past year, it’s that our failures as well as our successes that make me the person I am today. Those experiences will also shape the person I will become tomorrow.
As we celebrate this new year, it is my sincerest wish that our celebrations are done with love, compassion and fellowship with our neighbors, both near and far. Even if they live on the other side of the globe, we all deserve the respect of being who we are.
If you are looking for a New Year’s Resolution, I would offer you this one.
Find a way to accept your neighbor into your heart, regardless of their race, sex, nationality or religious belief.
This question was posed to me recently so I thought I would give it a stab. Everywhere, I suppose. I do remember that I started writing my initial books sitting on my deck in the middle of the summer.
Not exciting to most but I was able to soak up the sun at the same time. Sun worshiping weather is kind of rare in my area of the country. Glare on the screen hampered my ability to see the laptop so a deck umbrella was a necessary accessory.
Moving indoors, I either sit in a chair in my living room or my studio with the game on or more likely, playing music in the background. Since I have a day job I may write while on lunch, often at a table at a nearby café. I’m used to typing while slowly munching on a sandwich or drinking a cup of coffee.
That’s the wonderful thing about today’s laptop computers and tablets. I can write almost anywhere, if I choose. I like utilizing any spare time to write including jotting down a chapter or two in the waiting room as my car was being serviced. I prefer the use of a laptop and tablets since I can later read what I wrote which is a big plus.
Mostly though, I write the bulk of my books sitting in a recliner in my bedroom. “Huh?”
Well, for me, my brain is constantly playing imagery in the background. It seems my best dialog comes to me at four in the morning while I’m half asleep. It is that sleep state between being fully awake and fully asleep where my mind floods itself with recollections of music, imagery and/or conversations. If you don’t experience it, consider yourself lucky. I might be jealous of you, though.
The dialog runs at super speeds in my semi-conscious state and if I am fortunate to realize it, I get out of bed, pick up my computer and begin furiously writing it all down before I forget it all. Trust me, if I wait until a decent hour, the scene and the dialog is lost forever. So, I’m up at four a.m., writing furiously and it often continues right on into mid-morning or later.
So, that’s how and where I write my books. How about you? Where do you write, paint or whatever you enjoy doing. Please write a comment and let me know. I would enjoy sharing common experiences with you. Thanks in advance for sharing.
On this day, around the world people are celebrating the holiday as is their custom in their native lands. I hope you remember the ones you are not with you on this special day. Whether they be protecting your country, on assignment helping to support their families or simply living afar, please send them your love. It’s the most precious gift one can give.
If you wish to share a holiday memory or send a message to a loved one, I welcome your comments. I’d be happy to share them with my followers.
As I write another chapter for my next book, I am reminded just why we are all here on this planet. Contemplating just how Mona and Honey would approach this holiday, I can’t help wonder that ultimately, they would gather their respective families together, share fellowship, various stories of the past year of their dearly departed and they would welcome their newest members of their households.
They would also sit down together, share a meal, engage in conversation, seek out those they barely know and even enjoy each other, be it in fellowship, their bodies or simply, their common experiences.
We are a community. We are a global community. We all live together for the common goal and support of one another. I trust everyone on this planet feels the same way. I would love to hear your stories, your holiday memories and your wishes for the new year. I’d be happy to publish them here on this blog and share them with all my followers.
I hope that our own future is akin to their experiences. It is also my hope that our entire global community will celebrate the coming holiday with love and compassion for our fellow neighbor.
I look forward to hearing from you. In the meantime, have a very Happy Holiday.
Hmmmm … I suppose I’ve been writing in one form or another all my life. I remember writing short stories as a kid. I remember one story I wrote that later became a motion picture but that is another story in of itself.
Later, as an adult, I chose a career where I would write code for programs. I even got recruited by a company because I reverse engineered their software and began writing programs against their platform. They were so impressed, I got an upgraded job.
Writing programs exercised my creativity as well as the logical sides of my brain for decades. It was enough to figure out what to write and deliver a product that many people used each and every day. I got paid to do it yet there was never a question or an interest in receiving residuals for the work!
Jump ahead to the later part of my life and I was becoming increasingly anxious to create something other than computer code. I picked up pencil and paper and rediscovered drawing. Picking up paint and brushes, I rediscovered painting. For a while, I thought about trying to market my creative works. I was quickly frustrated by the process and abandoned my feeble marketing efforts. I still draw and paint but I do it for the love of the craft.
Frustrated by not being able to capture the imagery in my head fast enough, I dabbled with writing. Eventually, I stumbled upon an idea that really excited me. So, I wrote and wrote. Over time I must admit but I was determined to finish the story.
When I shared the finished product with friends, I was astounded by the response. They demanded that I publish it and continue writing.
So, now I’m working on a new career. One in which I do part-time now and will devote full-time after I retire from business. I enjoy writing and if I make money doing something I love, wow! Who is to say that someone might even like it enough to sign me to a movie deal? Wouldn’t that be cool?
What aspect of the book will women love in the Mona Bendarova Adventures?
I think that women, reflecting on what they just read, will love the idea that they have all the power within the society I’ve created. They outnumber men, sixty six men for every million women. It may seem lopsided yet with numbers like that, how could the gender not be a power house to contend with. It is they that have the control over their own destinies. They may not know it and the reader may not get that sense while reading the initial book, ‘The Taste of Honey’ yet as they continue to read the subsequent books, ‘Broken Steele’ and ‘Lucky Bitch’, it becomes obvious that the women have the power and are in control of their destinies.
There’s no sickness, racism, sexism nor prejudice, immorality or desire to take what is not there’s. There may be the occasional aberration but that just supplies the necessary conflict to make a story worth reading.
Everyone enjoys each others bodies. To them, enjoying sex is a natural and healthy activity. Both genders like to play together. They find suitable activities that give each what the other needs. They are not selfish, self-centered nor unfeeling towards others. Therefore, fighting among themselves is non-existent. Men are mostly nurturing to those under their houses and take their responsibilities seriously. All women, in all societies, crave those characteristics.
Everyone knows what is expected of them. No one shirks their duties. No one runs from their responsibilities.
The practices that some of the female readers may consider foreign or even gruesome need to consider that in the universe I created in these books, the female gender do it out of caring for their house and their community.
When I finally figured out the title of the story ‘The Taste of Honey’, I knew how I wanted the story to end. Honey was a main character who wanted to live forever in her family and close friends. In her mind, for whatever reason, she firmly believed that her spirit could only continue on through a live roasting on a barbecue spit. Gruesome, I know, but in Honey’s universe, it’s a common practice among the community.
Knowing how the story was to end, I needed to create characters with whom Honey would share her meat. As I thought about how Honey would meet her end, I needed an avenue to get there. So, I hit upon the idea that she goes missing and someone hired to go find her.
Introduce the investigator, Mona. Since my universe incorporated pervasive bdsm play, I decided that this character would be a masochist who enjoyed extreme play. So, her first name became Mona. Mona would be a play on the sound ‘moan’, which she would do a lot during her play.
To come up with her surname, I wanted her name to reflect her sexuality. Eventually, I came to the concept of ‘bend her over’.With a hidden message decided, I contracted it to Bendarova. To date, only one person I know has made this relate and called me on it. She smiled as she told me.
That’s how Mona Bendarova came into existence. She’s a smart, masochistic investigator who loves sex. Who’s your favorite character?
How did you come up with the title? Did the title come first or did the story?
For months, I had a concept of what I wanted to write. I had developed the idea of a future history of the human race dependent upon consuming themselves to survive. Originally, I had thought at it would be the result of a devastating war that put the species on the brink of extinction. It wasn’t until later, that I came up with the GMO angle running wild, systematically wiping out all protein based biologically life on the planet.
Yet that didn’t help me decide on a specific story line. I wanted a story in which I would highlight a main character who would by the end, decide to be live roasted and her meat consumed by her family and close friends. I wanted the live roasting to be the character’s choice and not forced upon the character. Further, I wanted the other main characters to feel comfortable with consuming the meat of one who had been one of their own. I struggled over months to find a way to carry out that goal.
In that time, I wrote draft after draft but none of them spoke to me. Then one day, while sitting on my deck, enjoying roasting under the summer afternoon sun, the phrase ‘The Taste of Honey’ hit me. It was a eureka moment. As I reflected upon the phrase, I decided immediately that it would be the title of the story.
Now, at that time, I wasn’t even thinking about publishing the story. I just wanted to write it. Now that I had a title, the rest of the story came together in a flash. Within minutes, I was furiously writing notes, capturing thoughts and ideas before they flashed out of existence. For me, it was a race to document the ideas, never mind whether I would use them all.
A couple of hours later, I had a clear concept of what I wanted to write and I began writing anew. Honey was not only to be the subject of the title but she would be a main character in the story.
It was a journey of self discovery, of retrospection and of desire. Desire in the sense of curiosity of seeing the story come to its conclusion. I knew what I wanted to write but I wanted to see it written on paper. The story took on a life of its own and before I knew it, it was no longer a short story but a full length novel.
I just completed editing the novellas included in ‘The Client Series’. I look forward to editing Richard Verry’s writings since I see first hand what a great author he is becoming, especially with character development. As in any book, I like to define myself with one of the characters. ‘The Client Series’ was difficult for me. It identifies with one of my greatest fears against the female gender and it is so timely with what is happening in the world today, Human Trafficking.
I like reading and editing with Rich. Those sessions have created heated discussions and since Richard knows I am impatient, he keeps telling me to hang on and “you will feel better” after reading ‘Her Essentia’. I hate to admit it yet he was right! I do feel better.
I hope you enjoy the series too. Please read all three and I implore all women to get through them all.
I woke up this morning with thinking about my early days of reading. They started out when I was about seven years old. I read lots of YA books in those days, Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew (yep her too), Tom Swift are some of my more memorable books. I grew from those quickly and looked for more interesting stories. I soon discovered authors Arthur C. Clark and Isaac Asimov.
It was when I discovered Robert A. Heinlein that I found my favorite author of all time. My very first book of his that I read was ‘Methuselah’s Children’. I was immediately hooked. I still have that particular 1958 edition in my library. It’s been republished over and over since it was first written in 1941.
‘Methuselah’s Children’ was Heinlein’s early stories into what became his ‘Future Histories’ books. Over the decades, this author managed to weave many of his other books into the ‘Future Histories’ line.
It was his character, Lazarus Long and his many incarnations, that really captured my interest. He was a ruthless yet caring character who could live, love and protect his family and friends. His story lines are filled with polyamorous love and sex of various flavors and experiences. Lazarus Long was a loaner and a family man. He was a father, a son, a husband, a widower, a soldier, a tradesman, a lover and a sinner. Deep down, he was a pacifist but would ruthlessly act to protect the worthy and the needy. He loved life and abhorred violence for violence sake.
As I read everything I could find, I was enamored with his books. I couldn’t get enough of Robert A. Heinlein. I was saddened when he died.
As I think about those days, reading his stories, I now realize that Heinlein helped shape me to be the person I am today. Instinctively, I’ve always known that about him. Now I understand it.
Who is the person that most influenced you in becoming who you are? I would enjoy reading your comments on my site www.richardverry.com.