01c-INTERVIEWS & FORUM (blog)

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I’m letting you take advantage of me.

posted Dec 14, 2017, 3:56 PM by David Alan Binder

I’m letting you take advantage of me.

 

Why?  Because it really is a benefit to both of us.  I learn from you and you learn from me.  There is no cost for both of

 us, so it is mutually beneficial.

 

I will not steal from you, lie to you or take anything from you.  I’ll just try and help make your writing better.

Such a deal!

Please contact me for free proofing, editing, idea bouncing, just see the benefits for yourself.

 

Give it a try…  TODAY!

 

Thanks, David Alan Binder

Plus you get to read all my great content free.  My returning users know that I publish interviews usually Tuesday and 

Thursday and sometimes on Sunday.  And my forum (blog) is published a few times a week.  Sometimes at the same 

time.  Sometimes on off days.  Thanks for reading.

Jennifer Dawn Anderson interview with David Alan Binder

posted Dec 12, 2017, 3:50 PM by David Alan Binder

Jennifer Dawn Anderson interview with David Alan Binder

 

Links:

http://forbiddentears.wixsite.com/forbidden-tears

https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=forbidden+tears+productions

https://www.google.com/search?q=kateland+black&rlz=1C1CHBF_enUS760US761&oq=kateland+black&aqs=chrome..69i57j0.2867j0j4&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

 

1.     Where are you currently living?

I currently live in the State of Arkansas, known as the Diamond State. I live in a quaint little Mom and Pop town called Waldron in the river valley nestled near the beautiful Ouachita Mountains.

2.     What is the most important thing that you have learned in your writing experience, so far? 

Word Play is allowable and the sky is the limit when it comes to writing and putting ideas to paper.  The imagination is as big as your mind can allow it to be.  Never let your mind limit your ability to create worlds of fantasy and wonder.

3.     What would you say is your most interesting writing, publishing, editing or illustrating quirk? 

I use the ever so illustrious … in my works to mean that there is a pause or a passage of time in some way...or a change in direction or the flow of writing. I also tend to write in prose a good bit, meaning that I am quite straight forward more so than poetic in my written word of speech.

4.     Tell us your insights on self-publish or use a publisher?

Being a writer that has done both over the course of time I feel this is a personal choice, of course, there are less middle men in a sense when you self-publish rather than when you also have an agent in the mix of marketing; but there are always middle men in some sense of the venue you choose for publishing such as Amazon etc., they will always take their fees as will any marketing platform. Plus, it is not easy for everyone to get the structure required for the uploads for print on certain platforms as there are certain requirements and this can cost a pretty penny unless you know someone who is willing to do it for you at a reduced cost. It can be learned and self-taught but also quite time consuming for some people.

 

a.      Who is the name of your publisher and in what city are they located?

I began my writing and publishing with Emerantia of Parnall-Gilbert in Dunedin New Zealand, a very influential agent and one I am very close to, in fact I am now partners with their agency for the purpose of publishing their author's works to DVD Audio. I have since begun my own publishing Company, Forbidden Tears Publishing Company.

 

5.     Any insights eBooks vs. print books and alternative vs. conventional publishing? 

I feel that with the way the world has evolved and fast paced as it is with technology driving us forward, many are turning to eBooks versus print in order to have the more on the go and on demand needs met.  However, I still believe in print and feel there is still a large market and need for it. I feel that an author should entertain all avenues with their works to gain the best versatility and the most outreach for them and their works. Gain it all and do it all, it certainly never hurts.

6.     Do you have any secret tips for writers on getting a book published?

It can seem difficult to get published, but make sure you send your query letters in well written form, include the word count at the top, the title of the work, and the genre. Be straight forward, include a synopsis, brief outline of what your book is about, not making it a mystery to the company you seek to publish with after all they need to know your material and are not simply potential readers.  Reach out to companies and do not get disheartened.  One thing that as authors we learn to value is criticism and if we cannot cherish that to be something that enables us to improve and grow upon then we are not in the right business.

7.     How did you or would you suggest acquire an agent?  Any tips for new writers on getting one?

This can be somewhat difficult as well. Many agents do not accept unsolicited material, but still some do...it's kind of hit and miss and again do not get disheartened, reach out and keep reaching out to various companies that are out there because they are there.  Parnall Gilbert is one and so is Solstice Publishing Company, and more if you just google and keep searching and sending out your query letters. 

8.     Do you have any suggestions or helps for new writers (please be specific and informational as possible)?  

Yes, learn formatting, and editing. Make sure you read books also.  To be a great author you must be a reader of works, I believe that helps you gain insight into your own writing and techniques.  And always read your own works when finished writing. Edit your work and make sure you turn in your very best. Don't think that it will be edited by the company because even though yes, they do edits they miss things sometimes too.  It takes you to be the best you in your writing to be the best writer. Take time and effort.

9.     What was one of the most surprising things you learned with your creative process with your books, editing, publishing or illustrating?

To me, it was just the thrill of seeing it come to life in paper form and book form.  That was very special and touching my hands upon the pages of my first book released. The whole process was exciting from beginning to end both in me writing it and the time it took, but when the agent accepted the material and that whole process began with the publishing company a whole new set of excitements began.  Editing, cover art, formatting, all of it was very interesting and a great learning experience. Something you just have to go through to truly understand.

10.                        How many books have you written?

I have written three books to date, and four screen plays.  I am also a Film Producer and Director.

11.                        Do you have any tricks or tips to help others become a better writer (please be as specific and information as you possibly can)? Read other authors works, practice grammar and sentence games, play word games with your family; scrabble etc. Any techniques with words and sentence building and word play will be helpful.

12.                        Do you have any suggestions for providing twists in a good story?

Any good twist depends on the story itself of course, but also on having protagonists and antagonists that feed each other well, the plot of course and the ups and downs throughout.  Suspense and lead in etc.  It's hard to say without knowing a certain story but build up but do not give it away, then BAM! There it is.

13.                        What makes your or any book stand out from the crowd?

A Great log line, that eye catching line that grabs a reader and draws them makes one stand out from another...that all exclusive line that is the hook that brings the reader to reach out and say I have to read this book.  Then there is the synopsis and the blurb that tells a bit about the book but gives nothing away...in fact it grabs the reader even more telling them this is a do not put down book! Cover art (The Book Cover) is also a very eye-catching point as well; it can grab a reader's eye as well drawing them to read that ever so touching blurb and log line that reels them in.

14.                        What are some ways in which you promote your work?

Now days the best ways are available to us and that is via social media.  Twitter, Facebook, websites, online pod casts and radio interviews.

15.                         What is the one thing you would do differently now (concerning writing or editing or publishing or illustrating) and why? 

It's not what I would do differently but what I have done differently already.  I self-publish now through my own company and do not use an agent.  I started my own company to have more control over my edits and my work and over the royalties as well.

16.                        What saying or mantra do you live by? I always have lived according to my own ways I guess and so the saying I have used most in that, "I am the Picasso to everyone's Norman Rockwell." JDA 2009

I also use and coined the phrase, "Don't follow me into the madness of the world, just accompany me within my own." JDA 2011

 

17.                        Anything else you would like to say?

Forbiddentears_productions@yahoo.com

http://forbiddentears.wixsite.com/forbidden-tears

https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=forbidden+tears+productions

https://www.google.com/search?q=kateland+black&rlz=1C1CHBF_enUS760US761&oq=kateland+black&aqs=chrome..69i57j0.2867j0j4&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

https://www.google.com/search?q=Jennifer+Dawn+Anderson&rlz=1C1CHBF_enUS760US761&oq=Jennifer+Dawn+Anderson&aqs=chrome..69i57j69i60j0.6432j0j9&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

Thank you!

Jennifer Dawn Anderson (Public Name/Jennifer Dawn) Pen Name (Kateland Black)

Forbidden Tears Productions LLC Waldron and Hot Springs Arkansas

& Hollywood California.

Forbidden Tears Publishing Co.,

Forbidden Tears Productions

Music Recording Label-Marketing and Distribution.

Forbidden Tears Productions/MR Music Promotions United Kingdom.

Forbidden Tears Productions

(Believe in Your Dreams and Fly Arkansas Film Festival)

Owner/Executive Producer/Founder/Director

Doing only, those things that advance and enhance you; those things are the only things worth doing

posted Dec 10, 2017, 9:06 AM by David Alan Binder

Doing only, those things that advance and enhance you; those things are the only 

things worth doing

Let’s say you read the news.  How much have you acted upon what you’ve learned from the news.

 

Not very much.  You read so much information to see what is happening in the world and what have you done with it?

Probably just mention something that was interesting to another person who had already read it.

Not much progress was made from any of that information for you specifically.

 

Occasionally, you will read about a scam to avoid, a recall or something of that nature.  So once in a while you’ll find an 

actionable news item.

 

Usually not though.

 

If you spent all that time doing something worthwhile than you’d actually be making your future better for you and your 

loved ones.

 

How about FacePlant (this is my favorite name for it, you may call it what you like) or any other social media.

Nothing actionable there at all.  Just tons of useless information about people you may know and a whole lot of people 

you don’t want or need to know.

They are posting millions of pages on information and it is overwhelming, it has no purpose except to draw attention, PR, 

or hype to what they are doing.  But what are you doing with that information.

99.9999% of the time, NOTHING!

 

What a waste of our time and theirs for posting all of it.

 

Using time wisely makes us a better person.  Perhaps there are habits we all need to change.

 

Another “Think Piece” by David Alan Binder

 

Seth Godin also has something to say about following the crowd:

 

http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2017/11/do-they-celebrate-on-saturn.html

 

Have a great day, Dear Readers and Dear Writers.!

Practice

posted Dec 7, 2017, 3:56 PM by David Alan Binder

Practice


I took 3 months lessons on the cornet (a horn) and in that time I never learned to play the cornet.  Why?  Simply because three months practice will not make anyone an accomplished cornet player.

I took 2 years of piano lessons.  In that time, I never learned to play the piano very well.  Why?  I did not want to learn to play; my mother wanted me to learn to play.  One person’s wish does not translate to another person.  The person who is taking the lessons needs to want it, taste it, need to have it happen for themselves. 

I cannot infuse any need of mine to you; you have to want it for yourself.

 

Evidently there are two types of practice according to Seth Godin:

Here is his article:

http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2017/11/two-kinds-of-practice.html

Thank you, Dear Writers and Dear Readers

 

Kathy-Diane Leveille interview with David Alan Binder

posted Dec 6, 2017, 3:08 PM by David Alan Binder   [ updated Dec 6, 2017, 3:08 PM ]

Kathy-Diane Leveille interview with David Alan Binder

 Bio:  Kathy-Diane Leveille is a former broadcast journalist with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Her debut literary mainstream novel Let the Shadows Fall Behind You was published by Kunati  Books.  Kathy-Diane’s short story collection Roads Unravelling was published to critical acclaim after a selection from its pages Learning to Spin was adapted to radio drama for CBC’s  Summer Drama Festival.  The tale Showdown at the Four Corner’s Corral was revised for the stage and performed by New City Theater in Saint John.  She is a member of the Writers Union of Canada, Writers Federation of Nova Scotia and Writers Federation of New Brunswick.

 Kathy-Diane’s prose has been published in a number of literary journals including Grain, Room of One’s Own, The Oklahoma Review, Pottersfield Portfolio, The Cormorant; as well as various anthologies such as Water Studies: New Voices in Maritime Fiction (Pottersfield Press) and New Brunswick Short Stories (Neptune).  Along with being awarded numerous Canada Council and New Brunswick Art Grants, Kathy-Diane’s fiction won the Short Grain Contest (dramatic monologue) in 2000 and was listed as a finalist in the Writers’ Union of Canada Short Fiction Contest in 2002.  Her poetry received Honorable Mention in the Stephen Leacock International Poetry Competition. A humorous commentary I Know What You Didn’t Do Last Summer aired on CBC’s national morning show with Shelagh Rogers.



·        Links:

 https://www.amazon.ca/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=kathy-diane+leveille

 https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1907328.Kathy_Diane_Leveille

 https://kathydiane.wordpress.com

 

 

1.     How do you pronounce your name?

Lev-ee-ay

2.     Where are you currently? The east coast of Canada

3.     What is the most important thing that you have learned in your writing experience, so far? 

To focus on process rather than product. When I do the reverse, the writing becomes vapid, shallow and so does my life.  When I am immersed in following the thread of story and losing myself in the possibilities it poses, my own life feels enriched with layers of depth and adventure. It’s a balance of spirit and ego in my view. I agree with Julia Cameron (The Artist Way) that creativity is born of spirit, and that it runs through everything in the universe. When I’m lost in the act of being creative I’m really closest to the true essence of being.   I can remember realizing this soon after my second book was published that, as exciting as being a published author was, the real enlivening joy comes in the act of writing.  There is also great reward in performing the business side of things, but it’s in the other arena, the early stages of the lone writer’s toil and creation, the inspiration and unfolding, when the words sprout wings, that I feel I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be.

4.     What would you say is your most interesting writing, publishing, editing or illustrating quirk?  

When I’m finished the first draft I let it sit for a while to let it cool. When I return and start editing I always like to have an intriguing book on the craft of writing on hand. I ask myself the questions the book poses about the particular manuscript. I thrive when I keep learning and challenging myself. The unusual bonus about writing is that no matter how long you write you can always keep evolving and tackling higher peaks.

5.     Tell us your insights on self-publish or use a publisher?

Do what feels right for you. Self-publishing gives you a lot of control as you can call the shots. Being with a publisher on the other hand offers more opportunities to promote your book, but there are also a lot of commitments that go with it. Research each and do what suits your personality and writing. Both have been very successful, more so if the writer’s temperament suits the vehicle.

a.      Who is the name of your publisher and in what city are they located? My books have always been published by small literary presses in Canada as I don’t have an agent. I simply send out my material to half a dozen publishers when it’s ready. I’ve been very lucky to have a few successes. “Standing in the Whale’s Jaw” was published by Tightrope Books, “Let the Shadows Fall Behind You” Kunati Books and “Roads Unravelling” Sumach Press.  When a book goes out of print it is usually released as an E-book on Smashwords.

 

6.     Any insights eBooks vs. print books and alternative vs. conventional publishing?

I think it’s revolutionary. There are so many opportunities for writers to get their work seen. I enjoy hearing stories of first time authors whose works were discovered on-line and became bestsellers. The exposure it offers is fantastic. In the past that avenue just didn’t exist. Editors are human. They’re subjective and have their own biases and business constraints. A MS that doesn’t get noticed in the slush pile doesn’t have to be relegated to the back of a closet any more. It can prove itself in an entirely different arena.

7.     Do you have any secret tips for writers on getting a book published?

My only tip is to keep writing. The moment you get a rejection letter, get back to the page and fall in love again with your story. If you continue to write this way sooner or later the vision you have interiorly of your story, will match the one you are creating on the page exteriorly because your skills at the craft will finally match your talent. Unless you’re brilliant, and I certainly don’t fit in that category, there is a long apprenticeship in writing. There are so many elements to conquer: Pacing, character, setting, plotting etcetera. It stands to reason that it will take more than a few tries to begin to hit the mark.   I’m still trying.

8.     How did you or would you suggest acquire an agent?  Any tips for new writers on getting one?

There’s a plethora of books like Writer’s Market that offer listings. Various writers’ conventions provide opportunities to meet agents and pitch to them. I don’t have an agent so I’m not the best writer to ask. However, I will say that it’s important not to dwell on it too much, particularly before you’ve even been writing long enough to hone the craft and gain confidence in your own voice. If you aren’t getting published, getting an agent won’t necessarily provide the magic potion to open a secret door to the publishing world.  Hard work and talent will rise to the top, so put most of your energy towards writing the absolute best piece of work you can. Read every author you admire, and those you don’t, and dissect their work over and over. By osmosis your writing will get better and better.  

9.     Do you have any suggestions or helps for new writers (please be specific and informational as possible)?  

Don’t work from the outside in, but from the inside out. Don’t get too caught up in reading one more book on writing or attending one more workshop on writing; in other words chasing the answers outside yourself to find success. Just write and the success will eventually emerge from inside you. Plain and simple. Just write. The longer you keep at it, the more the craft will start to make sense.  When your gut instincts and trust in your own writing firm up, you can balance it with confidence against outside advice no matter the source: editor, agent or writing guru.

10.                        What was one of the most surprising things you learned with your creative process with your books, editing, publishing or illustrating?

Even though I’m a card carrying introvert and I get nervous before a reading, it’s humbling and thrilling to read to an audience of people who love and respect story. When your work comes full circle you feel like you’re being carried on a magic carpet ride back to the place in childhood where you first discovered the kindling to spark imagination.  

11.                        How many books have you written?

I have a short story collection and 2 novels published. I have a new novel finished that is in the process of being edited.

                                    
        

12.                        Do you have any tricks or tips to help others become a better writer (please be as specific and information as you possibly can)?  Read the kind of writing that makes you fall in love with story and dissect it as you read. Ask yourself, how did they do that? Always be humble; always be a beginner.

13.                        Do you have any suggestions for providing twists in a good story?

Let it happen naturally. Contrived twists always stand out. Experiment with lots of different scenarios, and let the work breathe. Don’t get too tied to your intended outcome or synopsis.  In time you will know when it’s right to let a character have full rein and when to harness them back in.  If you have writers’ block, set the MS aside for a while. Disengage and trust that the story is still percolating in the back of your brain. If you push too hard, it will lack depth. Go out for a long walk, visit to the library or hop on a train.

14.                        What makes your or any book stand out from the crowd?

Heart. I believe books with heart written by a skilled hand contain a universal grain of truth that will always touch readers.

15.                        What are some ways in which you promote your work?

Libraries, reading groups, on-line, literary festivals and interviews such as this one.

16.                         What is the one thing you would do differently now (concerning writing or editing or publishing or illustrating) and why? I

I would be more discrete about on-line promotion. All writers are a bundle of nerves when a book comes out and you can get caught up in expending that energy doing a lot of on-line promotion that really don’t serve you or your writing in the end.  Selective picking and choosing with research is the key.

17.                        What saying or mantra do you live by? 

Progress not perfection.  Setting too high expectations can be as binding as a straight-jacket.

 

18.                        Anything else you would like to say?

Thanks very much for this opportunity. I love reading about other writers’ process and love talking about my own. 

SHARKS

posted Dec 5, 2017, 3:38 PM by David Alan Binder   [ updated Dec 5, 2017, 3:39 PM ]

SHARKS

I’ve done previous blogs on sharks. 

 

You may see that blog here:  https://sites.google.com/site/dalanbinder/blog/0824-seventyseventhpost-sharks

I have more shark sightings plus of a turtle and a barracuda:

Very cool videos in Grand Turk taken by my oldest son.

 

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC62zzzED5463HG5_7lY0XOg/videos?disable_polymer=1

 

They are very cool and offer a divers' perspective.

I took some pictures of our snorkeling adventure with an underwater camera and when those are developed and if they are worth posting, I’ll post a few.

 

Have a great day, Dear Readers and Dear Writers.!

SECRETS

posted Dec 4, 2017, 5:07 PM by David Alan Binder

SECRETS

You have a secret.  Do you think you are the only one?

 

We all have secrets. 

 

Incest, lust, greed, thievery, misuse, abuse, sins, withdrawal, depression and murder.

 

Yeah, we’ve heard it all and you have nothing secret that we have not already heard.

 

Use your secrets to work out what is bothering you, what is perplexing you, what stymies you.  Propel yourself above that using your characters to obliterate or at least cope with those secrets.

 

That is what books are for.  To explore worlds some of us may not ever go to and taste things never tasted and felt.  For others it is a release or at least a relief that others are going through what we are going or have gone through.

 

Got secrets?!?

 

Bring them on, Dear Writers and Dear Readers!

 

Charlie Lovett interview with David Alan Binder

posted Dec 4, 2017, 5:05 PM by David Alan Binder

Charlie Lovett interview with David Alan Binder

Bio from his website:  I was educated at Davidson College (NC) and went into the antiquarian book business.

 When I left the book business in the early 1990s, I continued to be a book collector, and now have a large (and growing) collection of rare (and not so rare) books and artifacts connected to Lewis Carroll and his world (my most recent major acquisition is Lewis Carroll’s own 1888 typewriter). I have written five books about Lewis Carroll and countless articles. I have served as the president of the Lewis Carroll Society of North America, and as editor of the London based Lewis Carroll Review. I have lectured on Lewis Carroll in the US and Europe at places such as the Smithsonian Institution, Harvard University, UCLA, and Oxford University.

 I received my MFA in Writing from Vermont College (now Vermont College of Fine Arts). During my work on this degree, I researched and wrote Love, Ruth.

A dearth of good material for elementary school performance, my wife asked if I would write a play. Thus began my career as a children’s playwright. For eleven years, as Writer-in-Residence at Summit, I wrote plays for third graders and for eighth and ninth graders. Nineteen of my plays have been published, including my first, Twinderella, which won the Shubert Fendrich Playwriting Award, beating over 750 other entries. The plays have proved extremely popular and have been seen in over 3500 productions in all fifty states and more than 20 foreign countries.

 My novel The Program, about an evil weight loss clinic, was published by the micro-press Pearlsong Press. My YA novel The Fat Lady Sings was also published by Pearlsong.

 But my big break-through as a writer came when I put together two of my passions—rare books and the English countryside—to write The Bookman’s Tale, the book that was ultimately accepted by Viking and by several other publishers worldwide.  The Bookman’s Tale was a New York Times bestseller, a Barnes and Noble Recommends selection, and has been translated into several foreign languages. Parade Magazine called the book “[A] delightful tale of love and bibliophilia.” The Bookman’s Tale was published in paperback by Penguin Books.

 My next novel, First Impressions (Viking, 2014; Penguin, 2015) is another literary adventure, this one starring Jane Austen. People Magazine called it “a delightful novel that weaves together a modern love story  and a literary mystery involving Jane Austen.”

 2015 was a busy year for me, being the 150th anniversary of the publication of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. I curated a major exhibition called Alice Live! at the New York Public Library for Performing Arts at Lincoln Center. I spoke at the international gathering of Carroll enthusiasts in New York and wrote the introduction to the new Penguin Books edition of Alice. 2016 also saw the publication of my Christmas book, The Further Adventures of Ebenezer Scrooge, which USA Today called “[a] clever, merry, and, yes, convincingly Dickensian reimagining of this Victorian tale.”

 My new novel, The Lost Book of the Grail, will be published on February 28, 2017. Set in an English cathedral library, and reaching through centuries of English history, it tells the story of bibliophile and Holy Grail enthusiast Arthur Prescott as he works to uncover a centuries-old secret about the cathedral’s history. While editing that book, I also wrote the first draft of a middle grades book, The Book of the Seven Spells.

http://charlielovett.com/

 

1.     Where are you currently?

I live in Winston-Salem, North Carolina and spend about 6 weeks a year in Kingham, Oxfordshire, UK.

 

2.     What is the most important thing that you have learned in your writing experience, so far?

While I am now an established writer, in many years of trying to break through as a writer I learned to grab every opportunity, even if it didn’t seem like my kind of writing. I wanted to write novels, but when my wife, who was a theatre arts teacher, asked me if I could write a play for her third graders, I said yes. I had never written a children’s play, and never intended to be a children’s playwright, but that script led to a part time job as “writer in residence” for more than ten years. I wrote twenty children’s plays, and nineteen of them have been published. My plays have been seen in thousands of productions around the world. All because I said yes to a rather odd writing opportunity.

3.     What would you say is your most interesting writing, publishing, editing or illustrating quirk?

Whenever I finish a draft of a novel or finish a major rewrite, I try to read the entire draft through in a single day. It can be pretty brutal, but it helps me see if everything makes sense, if I have repeated myself or left anything out, if the continuity is logical, etc.

4.     Tell us your insights on self-publish or use a publisher?

a.      Who is the name of your publisher and in what city are they located?

 

My novels are published in hardcover by Viking and in paperback by Penguin. Both are divisions of Penguin/Random House in New York City.

 

5.     Any insights eBooks vs. print books and alternative vs. conventional publishing?

My novels, especially The Lost Book of the Grail, deal directly with this question, so I have many thoughts on the subject. The short answer is that there is plenty of room in the market for both print and digital platforms and both contribute aspects of reading and information storage that the other cannot. If you want to delve into the topic in more depth, read the first discussion between Arthur and Bethany in The Lost Book of the Grail.

 

6.     Do you have any secret tips for writers on getting a book published?

Sadly, there is no secret. Publishers publish books that they think will make money. If you write a great book with market potential, it will get published.

 

7.     How did you or would you suggest acquire an agent?  Any tips for new writers on getting one?

Basically it’s the same as the answer to the question above. I once asked my agent, “What percentage of unsolicited manuscripts do you set aside before you’ve finished reading the first page?” He said, “Basically all of them.” Your first page has one purpose and one purpose only—to get an agent (or editor, or reader) to read the second page. Make it amazing.

 

8.     Do you have any suggestions or helps for new writers (please be specific and informational as possible)?

Again, there are no secrets to becoming a good writer. Do two things and do them A LOT. Read and write.

9.     How many books have you written?

17

 

10.                        Do you have any tricks or tips to help others become a better writer (please be as specific and information as you possibly can)?

Read widely but also read deeply. In other words, read a lot of different kinds of books, but read as many books as possible that are similar to what you want to write. Also remember that a first draft is basically raw material. Many writers think once they’ve written a draft, they’ve written a novel. I think of it this way. I start out with a forest. Creating the first draft is like creating a set of building blocks out of that forest. It’s a lot of work, but a pile of blocks is not a building. The first draft is the beginning of the process, not the end.

 

11.                        Do you have any suggestions for providing twists in a good story?

The best twists (like the one at the end of The Lost Book of the Grail) are ones that have two qualities. First, the reader doesn’t see it coming. Second, once it is revealed the reader realizes, “Of course! It couldn’t have been anything else!”

12.                        What makes your or any book stand out from the crowd?

Telling a story that hasn’t been told before.

 

13.                        What are some ways in which you promote your work?

I spend a lot of time with social media, doing interviews such as this one, podcasts, radio interviews, TV interviews, writing blurbs for other writers, maintaining a website, writing a blog, and writing feature articles that tie-in with my novels. I also visit lots of book clubs (in person and via Skype) and do a lot of public appearances (mostly at libraries and bookstores). Getting published by a major publisher is great, but it changes your career by giving you more responsibilities.

 

14.                         What is the one thing you would do differently now (concerning writing or editing or publishing or illustrating) and why?

Even though I was 50 when I got my big break (The Bookman’s Tale) I still don’t have any regrets about the path I have taken as a writer.

 

15.                        What saying or mantra do you live by?

I wouldn’t say I live by a saying, but there is one word I don’t use: goal. I don’t say that it is my goal to write 2000 words today. It’s my job. A surgeon can’t decide halfway through a surgery that he has “doctor’s block,” so why should I be allowed to do that? Writing is my job and like any other job it has its good days and bad days, but I still do it.

Suffocating

posted Dec 3, 2017, 4:12 PM by David Alan Binder

Suffocating

Gasping for air.  Trying to inhale but something is stopping us.  Is this a nightmare?  Is this for real?

 

A plastic bag, a garrote, a hand, a pillow, under water?

 

What is suffocating you?  It may not be literal but if something is suffocating your creativity then changes will need to be made to break through and achieve creative air.

 

New stimulation or more caffeine may not be of help, but new insight from another person. 

(Remember I offer a FREE Write Coach service.  You may see more here:  https://sites.google.com/site/dalanbinder/blog/0789-onehundredandthirteenthpost-therightwritecoachhere)

 

There are ways to break through that suffocation, less TV, more reading, more studying, more understanding through meditation, or just some distance, a walk, another day.

 

Don’t choke yourself by overthinking it.  And of course, let me help.  I don’t criticize, I don’t blame, I don’t find fault, I just look at the issues and we tackle them together.  Your choice.

 

Good luck, Dear Writers and Dear Readers

 

The Future is Fluid

posted Nov 21, 2017, 3:59 PM by David Alan Binder

The Future is Fluid

You know that the future of anything and everything is not solidified.  Affecting the future is like damming a stream, you think you know how it will affect the downstream but you are never certain.

Looking back is a great way to discover how distant changes in human existence affects the future.  Different discoveries, how civilizations evolved, artifacts that are found, a speech even, or a book or bringing heretofore unknown chemicals into play; each and every one of these can affect the future of you and of mankind. 

 

The future is a fluid environment in which we all play and dabble today.  Since we are all playing within the same game, at the same time, in different places it is bound to have this interplay and outcome be such that no one can guess, let alone predict.  If 20 people are standing around in  a circle and all throw beach balls at the same time towards the center, the reactions of each ball hitting other balls is totally unpredictable.  We play with words, inventions, machines, dirt, and other materials and those in turn are acted upon by the physical constraints, rules and laws of the universe but also by the metaphysical interplay of each act reacting to other acts.

Dear Readers and Dear Writers, jump into the future stream now and see how your work affects the future; yours and mine.

 

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