Good Advice All Around


appreciate having my contribution selected for Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Best Advice I Ever Heard .

As a pre-release reader, I found good advice related to nearly every walk of life. The 101 stories about advice are all interesting and many are intriguing. Some may make you laugh, but some may make you cry.
The collection of an eclectic group of writers brings the getting advice experience of first-time writers and established authors as well. The advice depicted came to the writers from friends, relatives, and other sources.
Had it not been for the writers group, to which I belong, deciding we do something for Chicken Soup for the Soul, my contribution would not have happened. Thanks to (you know who you are) for the edits and ‘advice.’
My “Good, Very Good, Best” advice I ever heard tells about a life changing question from a friend.

ChickenSoup cover_art_ w gray side-bubble and text

A Considered Process


ohn Grisham, in a TV interview, said something about writing the end of a story first.

I was struggling with Nescient Decoy when I heard that interview, so wrote where I wanted Jason Finn to be at the end of the story. From that, I was able to lead him to that goal.
A beta reader asked, “Will there be more to the story, or is that all there is?”
I’d been asked the same thing when I ended An Odyssey of Illusions. I did draft of a sequel to that work, but I didn’t have an ending until the draft was finished. And the story in the draft didn’t please me either. So, I wrote an ending to ‘Odyssey’ instead of a sequel. A postscript finishes the story I will publish under a modified title.

Did I mention I’m drafting a sequel to Jason Finn’s decoy story? I am! The postscript from Nescient Decoy starts the story, and the end has been drafted.


poiler – there will be three Finns.



ver 90% of the winterizing is done around the house and yard. It doesn’t take a boatload of prep in the Pacific Northwest, but if somethings aren’t done, a ‘once in ten-year’ many-day cold snap will creep up on a homeowner. Burst pipes in the best of weather are a real burden, but during a freeze, …

We had restful long weekend, then I had the pleasure of going to Burbank, CA, with my granddaughter to observe and follow a script in a voice recording session.

jmb at recording with Greg

The author of the book for which I posted a review, directed the session that will be on Adventures of Odyssey sometime next year. One of the voice actors in the audio play was Greg Jbara (Garrett on Blue Bloods) so, my granddaughter and I got some good time with him and a number of regulars on A of O. Then we got good seats for a taping of Last Man Standing.

So, I’m relaxed and ready to get on with finishing two items with a deadline and other work I’ve started.
And, my marketing plan for Nescient Decoy is in process.

Going Dark


escient Decoy is out, so I’ve been thinking sequel? Well, since I left the door open, or more accurately opened the door, it’s been started!

An earlier blog ‘kinda’ focused on other work I’ve started or sent to publishers. One of those will be published soon in Chicken Soup for the Soul. I had some concerns about loss of an early manuscript, thus loss of what I was wanting to tell when only the expanded versions were available. None of my local pre-readers had the hard copy I sent them in 2014. The great however is, after several hours of backup file search, I serendipitously found an epub copy. At the time I’d been experimenting on the beta version with some conversion software, so it was filed with the software default filing system.
Considering my multiple starts and nearly finished work since between and even after the Nescient Decoy finish made my head hurt!

With multiple projects spinning and crossing over in my mind, I decided to finish only a flash-fiction due the first of November. So, I’m going dark with all writing, including this platform, so I can work on marketing Nescient Decoy and read several books I’ve only shelved.


hen my mind is clear next month (whoops that’s less than a week away), in 30, 60, or 90 days, I’ll get back to the keyboard with a priority plan. Well, one can have hope.

Thinking Sequel


ow that Nescient Decoy is out, should I be thinking sequel?

I posted about one publisher’s letter telling me the story was too short for its requirements. And I tried filling parts of the body with extended dialog and side trips. But the story was taken from Jason’s diary and other notes, so I and most readers would question how he might know the extras. In the process of my filling-in, I was losing the story.
When I ended with, “…the only looking over our shoulders will be … while watching the evening sky turn red behind Steens Mountain,” I had my first thought about continuation. Thus, the postscript.
Well, I started thinking there would be a natural flow to the continuation of Jason and Erin’s lives, either on the ranch or back with the Company. Could there be both? If just the ranch, the postscript didn’t set that up very well, if at all. If just the Company, what happens to the ranch? Is there something in Grandpa’s history that might have a continuing impact? How would any of the options impact their relationship? After all neither had much knowledge about the other before their spontaneous marriage. Etc., etc,…
How do I continue the voice if it’s two person’s story?


erhaps it is too soon, but what else should I be doing with my time?