WRITING FOR THE HOLIDAYS

Date:

WRITERS CORNER:

RUSTY STRAIT | SENIOR REPORTER

I recently received an email from a young man in Temecula who asked if it was too late to write stories about Christmas. I’m letting him know now that magazines are filled to the gills for Christmas and New Years. Might I suggest that he write for Valentine’s Day or after Christmas experiences.

Books are another thing entirely. If you write a good book and have it done by April, and you manage to find a publisher, or even self-publish, you would have a good chance at the fall market. Contrary to the book that gets published immediately, it will have to be about some current event that is hot and lasting. For instance, a mass murder in your community that makes national news. Otherwise, set your sights a few months down the road. It will make you feel better, and if you do stress out, Alka-Seltzer always works for me.

I understand. I was once a young writer, and I thought I would set the world on fire. Unless you write about something long-lasting here or abroad, just kick back with a Piña Colada, find a table with an umbrella, and hit the keys of your computer. You will eventually drift off from your work and take a nap. When you wake up, rewrite what you wrote, and whether the writing pleases you, you will have had a nice snooze and feel eager to start over where you left off.

Let me tell you, folks, writers have all kinds of hours to write, when to write, etc. I once knew a very popular writer who actually set up his typewriter between the kitchen sink and the stove. I don’t know if he managed it, but he managed to pump out a book a year. John Grisham belts out one a year. I don’t know his writing situation, but a man who can do that, raise a family, and handle all the other duties of a family is somebody you might want to emulate. No problem with having an idol who inspires you.

Although he rarely wrote a book, Walter Winchell inspired the hell out of me because he was so prolific with his newspaper columns.

I plan to write more about the trivialities of writing as we travel this lonely trail. Just sayin’

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