They tell me there are two kinds of writers.

The first is the PLANNER. The PLANNER sits and thinks, writing down an outline of varying level of detail, and then writes the document. The PANTSER, on the other hand, just sits down and writes with a varying number of ideas in his/her head concerning the document.

I was a PANTSER, hardcore. Of my 10 fiction books, all where pantsed. I sat with a varying level of ideas and let my muse take control. My muse has been getting lazy. The last three tries at novels have ended up dead ended at the 20-30,000 word stage. My 10th novel, SAILOR, I published at the 30,000 word length and still think its a better book because of that.

Now I have three, 3, books in progress and all are trying to end way to soon.

So, I am going to try being a PLANNER. I will sit and world build, deepen my characters with all kinds of emotional and physical stressers, and drag it through the mud of the thesaurus until I come up with an outline.

Can that really be a way to write a book? I fight myself on this choice. It just isn’t natural, for me at least.

All I really want to know is which type pays best in personal satisfaction. If I were in this for the money, I’d be a joke.

Pray for me,

Now go write


I had never given the question of why I write in so many genres much thought. I was born a while back and done many things since then. My grandkids think I fought in the Revolutionary War, but it was really the evolutionary war. My wife thinks I sits too much and need more exercise, but when I ask ‘pretty please’ to go on a hike, she tells me to sit down and stop such foolishness. Goin’ hiking anyhow. I dug ditches before shovels were invented. When God said, “Let there be light,” I was the electrician that threw the switch. I was in school when world history text book was only three pages long and those pages were of stone. I’ve done a lot and learned a lot and failed a lot and now I’m having fun a lot. Having ridden a rank horse and pushed cows on the trail, I write westerns. Having met Christ face to face at the ripe old age of 14, I write Christian materials. Being a natural born liar, I write political stuff. Basically, I write from where I’ve been, always lookin’ at where I want to go.

Be blessed and enjoy my books. Buy one of each, they’re great. Or at least my wife tells me they are and Amazon won’t let her write a review. Ya gotta love’m


Today has started bright and clear. Sun leaping over the eastern horizon to begin the process of heating my life to a comfortable level, and no more I hope.

Within two hours all has changed. Clouds rapidly fill the sky, the temperature drops, and, oh yes, and the wind is now sandblasting the east wall of the house preparing it for its next coating of paint. The house quakes and trembles in its attempts to stand against the forces of the wind.

I think of flying kites.


After two vacations, eat your heart out, and close to 3500 miles of travel, we are finally home in our own bed. Not that any of the others were so bad, but there truly is no bed like home.

I have many memories, pictures, books, literature pamphlets, and just plain stuff from our many stops and excursions. Each of them has been read and notes taken. The job now is to organize them and the notes some way that will help me recall them when I need them in a story. One of my current WIPs covers the Civil War period, now there are many items and notes on battlefields and locations in the NW Arkansas and SW Missouri areas where the story takes place. Went to Wilson’s Creek battlefield where the south won control of SW Missouri and then a month or two later just walked away from Springfield and SW Missouri. Got a good feel for the land and the situation. Bought a few books and booklets written for the Centennial anniversary of the Civil War.

Actions like this on the author’s part adds much when even the slightest mention to known battles, people, places, and things are added to the story. It makes the story live. These known factors of the story make the whole story seem more real to the reader and help hold their attention as you weave the story in, around, and through them.

Home now, I just pulled some pics my Mother had taken in the 50’s of Vicksburg. Will add these black and white memories to the file for this WIP.

How do you use your experiences, memories, and accumulated materials in your writing?

Now go write!

Tome for work, or maybe that should be tomb.

How you doing on camp nano? 31 days to write to your own stated goal. I think I will fail to win this year with a goal of only 10,000 words. Got to 6,500 and life got in the way. Vacation with daughter and family. Followed it up with a four day return trip thru places unknown.  3 days at home and off to Colorado for a week in the Rockies. Leadville here we come dragging our trailer behind. At our age roughing it is a very small bathroom with flush toilet.

BUT, I treat every stop and sign a research point for an upcoming book. In Missouri we saw tigers, lions, and a grizzly bear close up and personal. I have a much healthier respect for the size of all. My accountant says I can deduct much of the travel if I’m ready to show where I have or intend to use the knowledge gained.  Sounds good to me.



How do you apply what you see on trips and such in your writing or other profession?

Now go write.