Category Archives: On Writing

Book Review: The Writers: A History of American Screenwriters and Their Guild by Miranda J. Banks

After my six-week stint at Clarion West science fiction writing workshop in 1973, my epic hitchhiking journey down the West Coast, through Mexico and into Guatemala, my return to Seattle, and my abortive attempt to get normal jobs, I got … Continue reading

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Vision of a Bright Flower in a Remote Jungle: An Encouragement to Self-Publishers

Let’s go on a journey together, you and I, far, far from our familiar habitat, to the most remote corner of the Earth. Where do you envision it? Deep in the Amazon jungle, perhaps? In the remote wastes of the … Continue reading

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The Egregious Practice of Charging Reading Fees

(This article first appeared on the website of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America on March 26, 2018.) I am a hybrid author, which means that I self-publish books and also publish short stories in traditional venues. Last … Continue reading

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What a Long Strange Year It’s Been: A Personal Look at 2017

Like many of you, I have been aghast at America’s convoluted, complex, and dysfunctional political situation this past year, but I’m not going to comment on that. Early on in this blog’s history, I decided to stay far away from … Continue reading

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Book Review: Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life by William Finnegan

In my search for new nonfiction books to read, I perused recent awards lists and came across this title. It surprised me that a book on surfing should have won a Pulitzer Prize, but as I read brief descriptions of … Continue reading

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I’m Not Home Here Either

Where is home really? Listening to a Bob Dylan song recently somehow made me think of another Bob Dylan song, “Don’t Think Twice, It’s All Right.” In it, the singer leaves a woman and heads back out on the road … Continue reading

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On the Self-Help Book I Couldn’t Bring Myself to Read

My son and I have been making frequent trips to the local library during these final weeks of summer. I browse through the new book shelves and he looks for DVDs and graphic novels. On my last visit I came … Continue reading

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Book Review: Literary Life: A Second Memoir by Larry McMurtry

I found this book during a random search of the biography/autobiography section of my local library. In the interests of full disclosure, I have to admit that as much as I can remember I have never read anything before by … Continue reading

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Three Out of Five

It took me a while to bring myself to write this one because it’s so personal. It exposes me; it leaves me vulnerable. It concerns motivations that keep me going, but they aren’t really my primary motivations at all. My … Continue reading

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Life Is Entertaining

This essay came about because of a terrible commercial I’ve been seeing lately on various TV and internet sites.  In it, a certain A-list Hollywood actor walks around a city, and as he does, scenes such as those that appear … Continue reading

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