The Top 5 Writing Distractions

A Writer's Path

by ARHuelsenbeck

In the YouTube ad for her MasterClass, Joyce Carol Oates says, “The great enemy of writing isn’t your own lack of talent; it’s being interrupted by other people. Constant interruptions are the destruction of the imagination.” Yeah, that’s true, but if you’ve ever struggled to find a block of time to devote to your writing, or if while you’re working you can’t maintain your focus, then you know people aren’t the only problem. In this article I enumerate what I consider to be the top 5 writing distractions, and how to deal with them.

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Common Fiction Writing Mistakes

Nicholas C. Rossis

Writing Passion | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books

I came across a nice thread on Quora (here and here) about common mistakes in fiction. I am sharing here the ones that I agreed with. I found particularly interesting to see which mistakes different people mentioned, as many of them contradicted each other. This makes perfect sense to me: reading is a highly personal experience. That’s why I agree with Mary Gentle that there is only one sign that a novel is bad:

You’re reading the novel. You put it down. Somehow, you never pick it up again.

That’s it.

But it’s a highly personal thing and we can’t generalize. There are books that have made all the mistakes below and I’d still enjoy reading.

Having said all that, here are some of the most common mistakes mentioned:

Info dump

This is most common in fantasy and sci-fi. Just dumping enormous amounts of facts and history on…

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Remembering What You Wrote

A Writer's Path

by Doug Lewars

It’s easy isn’t it? You wrote it so naturally you remember it. Such is not always the case. I’m reminded of a book I wrote some years ago. It’s a fantasy and a woman is killed and moved into something I refer to as the Midworld. Anyway, not knowing her way around, she wanders aimlessly for a while and happens to board a subway. A hundred or so pages and perhaps three months in story time I remembered I’d left her on the subway and quickly needed a way to get her off and account for the time lapse.

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COVID-19 Enhances Amazon’s Reliability and Credibility

Nicholas C. Rossis

Amazon logistics center in Poland| From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books

The Covid-19 pandemic has upended our lives, forcing us to live digital lives rather than physical ones.

Unsurprisingly, perhaps, Amazon.com Inc. reported soaring quarterly sales because of a surge in online orders from homebound customers contending with the coronavirus pandemic—as reported by The Wall Street Journal and Passive Guy.

The tech giant said Thursday that revenue rose 26% from a year earlier to $75.5 billion in the three months through March—by far the highest on record for what is usually Amazon’s slowest period of the year.

The boom in sales came at a cost, though: profit fell 29% from a year earlier to $2.5 billion, well short of analysts’ average estimate of $3.26 billion. Operating profit for the quarter also missed the estimate Amazon gave in January.

The results, which follow relatively robust earnings reports by several other big tech companies in recent days, reflect the central role…

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Is Ingram-Lightning the Future of Publishing?

Nicholas C. Rossis

The other day, I came across an eye-opening article through The Passive Guy. Veteran publishing consultant Mike Shatzkin was describing the ways that the Coronavirus is changing the publishing industry. Among his main takeaways is that supply chains have been so disrupted by the Coronavirus that main publishers are turning to Print-On-Demand (POD) printers like Ingram-Lightning to ensure delivery of their titles.

Print on Demand | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books

Is Print-On-Demand (POD) the future of publishing?

The Coronavirus simply speeds up a trend that had been ongoing for years. There are many reasons why publishers may find POD solutions cost-effective and efficient.

Think of all the costs including the salaries and benefits of staff associated with:

  1. printing,
  2. order-taking,
  3. shipping to a warehouse,
  4. warehousing,
  5. order fulfillment,
  6. shipping orders from the warehouse to store,
  7. shipping and restocking
  8. costs of returns,
  9. crediting and paying bookstores for returns,
  10. bookstore and bookchain bankruptcies,
  11. dealing with stock involved in the…

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EDIT Premium Lifetime Offer

Nicholas C. Rossis

Back in November, I wrote a series of reviews for online graphics tools. EDIT was one of the best ones I could find. It offers a bunch of templates to choose from and helps you create design material for your social media and web pages. You can also use it to produce printable material like flyers, business cards, or posters.

EDIT’s main advantage is that it allows you great flexibility and creativity with its templates. While this requires a higher level of expertise, it does let you create some stunning graphics:

EDIT review | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books

To help businesses better cope with the pandemic, EDIT is offering my readers an exclusive discount: you get a lifetime EDIT Premium license for just $54.90! As I got my license, I thought you may be interested in it, too.

Click here to take advantage of the offer!

Please note that this is an affiliate link, as…

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A Heaven for Toasters: Chapter 11

Nicholas C. Rossis

A Heaven for Toasters | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's book After relaunching A Heaven for Toasters, complete with new cover, I promised to publish it here in installments. Here’s the next chapter.

Note: You can find a link to all published chapters at the end of this post or read more parts on Wattpad.

A Heaven for Toasters

What if your perfect man was a robot?

Detective Mika Pensive has a new partner. He’s hot. Smart. Funny. And an android.

Set in the near future, A Heaven for Toasters is more than a sci-fi crime adventure with plenty of romance and wit. It’s the book that will make you look at your toaster in a whole new way.

CHAPTER 11: Sergeant

Monday, 2:24 p.m.

I didn’t get much sleep that night, despite my exhaustion. My body was still high on adrenaline from both the warehouse chase and my encounter with Sergeant, but there was more. I had the…

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Around the World in 10 Bookmobiles

Nicholas C. Rossis

Today, the internet gives everyone access to whatever they want, so searching for a good book is extremely easy to do. In times where we did not have internet access, however, people had to look for other options to be able to access books and read.

Book shops and libraries were quick places reach for the people who live in the more urban areas, but those who were not located in the city center were out of luck. That’s where bookmobiles come into the picture! They have been around for many years and have a lot of history. These libraries on wheels help spread books to those who do not have access to them, like people who live in rural areas.

You may remember my recent post on the female librarians who delivered books on horseback. Turns out they were following in a rich tradition. Whether it is a trip…

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Why I’m (Not) Worried About Being a Slow Indie Author

A Writer's Path

by Kelsie Engen

I’ve talked earlier this year about my two-year writing plan, where I’ve scheduled out my WIPs and made rough guidelines for publishing those WIPs. In that post, I also admitted the ridiculous number of WIPs I have in progress, all in various spots on the path to publication.

Now, I knew it was ambitious when I wrote out those dates and times and goals, but I figure, hey, if you’re not being ambitious, you’re being lazy, right?

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Writing Interactive Fiction

Nicholas C. Rossis

Journey under the sea | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's booksA couple of years ago I wrote about the Choose Your Own Adventure books. In the books—for those not familiar with them—you read until you come to a decision point, which prompts you to flip to another page, backward or forward. They invite you into an exciting, dangerous world where you, the reader, had to make decisions that meant life or death. They were interactive fiction at its finest.

A recent post by Michael La Ronn, posted on Self Publishing Advice, reminded me of this. Michael wanted an interactive reading experience, but with grown-up characters and storytelling. Since he didn’t see a novel like this in the marketplace, he wrote one: How To Be Bad.

In his post, Michael describes what he did differently to overcome the older audiences’ reluctance to try out this genre. For example, he felt that older audiences dislike it because they view it…

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