Our Next Meeting

The Desert Writers Guild will meet Thursday, February 15, 2018, from 1:30 to 4 PM at Lutheran Church of the Desert, 6336 Hallee Rd, Joshua Tree, CA 92252.Visitors are always welcome, and if you’ve written something (short story, novel, poem, screenplay) you’d like to share, bring it to read.

The Desert Writers Guild

The Desert Writers Guild will meet Thursday, February 1, 2018, from 1:30 to 4 PM at Lutheran Church of the Desert 6336 Hallee Rd, Joshua Tree, CA 92252.Visitors are always welcome, and if you’ve written something (short story, novel, poem, screenplay) you’d like to share, bring it to read.

My first published writing (since a long time ago)

 

Cholla Needles, a local anthology of short writing–fiction, poetry, essays–published a piece I wrote, “This Is Nothing Like Snakes On A Plane.” I did a reading at a local bookstore to applause and some mild chuckles. I thought it was funnier. You can read it here: http://francismoss.com/this-is-nothing-like-snakes-on-a-plane/. 

Or, better yet, you can order the current or past editions from the Amazon.com link at http://www.chollaneedles.com/.

NaNoWriMo –

 

Right down to the deadline (11/30), but I did my 50K words–maybe 30K of which are any good–for the National Novel Writing Month challenge. I even got a badge. The NaNoWriMo organization also offers badges for a couple dozen categories, like Pantser, or Planner (do you write by the seat of your pants or outline?), Caffeine Abuse, Word Sprinter (if you joined a NaNoWriMo get-together to write, which I did at Space Cowboy Books), and others. They don’t offer a badge for cheaters, which I earned because I started KillGirl long before the official start date.

It was fun, and I will do it again next year.

The Writers’ Digest Novel Writing Conference, 2017

I went to the Writers’ Digest Novel Writing Conference in Pasadena. I was pleasantly surprised. My  first writing conference was disappointing. That con—which shall not be named, in case I get invited to the next one to speak—was more of an opportunity for vendors to sell stuff than for me to learn about my craft, or the biz in general. Since then, I’ve had my BS detector set on high.

Here are a few photos:

  

Useful writing tool

 

Writing TV, you’re always outlining. You have to make it the right length, figure out the act breaks, and make sure you have an act-ending hook to bring ’em back after the commercials.

Books, not so much. Some people do detailed outlines, some wing it (seat-of-the-pants writing). I go back and forth; I make a lot of outline-ish notes, but wind up tossing a fair amount.

But whether you’re an outliner or a pantser, you will probably find this handy when writing and organizing.

Jami Gold has free outlining tools (Excel spreadsheets) that will help anyone needing to arrange the sequence of events that make for turn-the-page reading.

Worksheets for Writers

She also offers online classes and editorial services.

Local News

 

The Hi-Desert Star, our local paper, interviewed me about my writing career. Here’s the article.

 I vacillate between feeling all cool and superior to reminding myself, “big fish, small pond.”

Not that I have anything against small ponds: we have one in our yard that, while it has no fish, is a go-to destination for coyotes, jackrabbits, antelope squirrels, cactus wrens, quail, pigeons and owls.

When the paper gets around to putting the article on-line, I’ll link to it.

SCWBI, please note the artful placement of my hat. Free advertising!