ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Writer's Mailbag: Installment 251

Updated on April 8, 2019

April Is a Fickle Month

It really is, you know. It can’t seem to make up its mind what it plans to do on any given day . . . brilliant sunshine, drifting clouds, sprinkles, not the cupcake time, downpours, winds and gusts and promises . . .

It also marks the time when my other life shifts into high gear, the farmers market season, meaning one less day to write meaning always being behind in my writing duties . . . but it’s all good! I love what I do, and I’d rather be doing it than pushing up daisies, for sure.

How about you? What does April signify for you?

While you ponder that question, I can tell you that my new book, the Magician’s Shadow, will be uploaded on Amazon this day, Friday, April 5, so it could very well be available for purchase as you are reading this. It took a year to write it, not because of its length but simply because of nagging commitments. I’m glad to be putting this one to bed. It will be available as a paperback first. There are some issues that have to be worked out before it is available as an ebook. Thank you for your patience, and because of your patience I set the lowest price possible on Amazon for this release, which is $5.

Update: the paperback is available now. Follow this link.

Let’s do this Mailbag thing!

Welcome to the Mailbag!
Welcome to the Mailbag!

Possible Prequel

From Shannon: “Oh, and your Shuttle story would be an interesting concept for a movie. Are you turning the series you did here on HP into a novel prequel? can always submit your book to various contests to see if someone grabs it “

Thank you, Shannon! A prequel? I had to stop and think about what series you were talking about. What a great memory you have, and about my work? Thank you! The answer to your question is I don’t know. I have a new novel I just started, and I already have a “rough draft” of another Shadow book in my head dying to break free. There’s only so much time, you know!

I would like to do that. I would like to pick up with the Shuttle book, and build a novel around the granddaughter Hope. I always meant to do that. But the road to somewhere is lined with good intentions, right?

Thanks for the suggestion!

Is the Shadow Series Ending?

From Melissa: “Not to jump too far ahead, but since this is the last in the Shadow series, what's next for you? Has your muse spoken to you yet?”

Melissa, I’m sorry if I gave the wrong impression about the Shadow series. It is not ending. It is simply taking a one novel break, which leads to your second question, a novel I have begun, which has a working title of “A Time and Place.” It is a novel set in the 1960s, in my old neighborhood, and it loosely parallels the disappearance of a young girl, Ann Marie Burr, who is believed to be the first victim of Ted Bundy.

Once I finish that novel, the Shadow series will return, and I already have a storyline for the 6th in that series in my head.

Thank you for being such a loyal follower of Eli, Liz, and Striker. They all send their love and appreciation.

The Shadow Series will return next year
The Shadow Series will return next year

Enjoying the Creative Process

From MizB: “There is something I've noticed personally about my own writing, and even before I started putting my musings down on paper (or the computer). When a story starts unfolding in my mind, I get as much pleasure from the newness of it as I do from reading other people's work. This just hit me a few days ago. I can't help but wonder if other people do also. Or is this just an ego trip of mine? :)”

I guess, MizB, we both suffer from an abundance of ego! LOL

No, seriously, I think this is natural. We are giving birth to a new creative work. Why wouldn’t we experience pleasure from the process? So very few people in the world can do what we do, and do it well. If a little “feeding of the ego” is involved, then so be it!

I love the newness of it. I love to peel off its wrapper and see what surprises await me. I love having my muse whisper in my ear and tell me she needs my help for completion. I love the collaboration she and I experience, the bond that is formed, and the trust which is strengthened.

I love everything about it, MizB, and I don’t think I’m strange because of it.

I am writer, hear me roar!

The Origin of Ideas

From Bob: “Where does your inspiration come from for a creative piece?

Bob, here’s my one-word answer: EVERYWHERE!

I’ll give you a very recent example. On the local news there is a weekly feature called “Eric’s Heroes.” It is a spotlight on local people who do good for our society, people who work outside the limelight, doing good works quietly and for no reward. Last week there was a feature on a guy who sits by the lake holding a sign which says “I would like to have a conversation with you.” People walk by him, some smiling, some quickening their pace, and occasionally some stopping and engaging in conversation. Complete strangers, talking to each other, no agenda, no debates, no rancor . . . just one man reaching out to others, hoping to make a connection.

It turns out that young man is clinically depressed, and he does what he does because he firmly believes he needs human interaction to stay sane . . . he forces himself out of bed, each day, picks up his sign, and saves his own life by doing something which must be agonizing for him.

I think that’s a beautiful story. It so perfectly summarizes the struggle in all of us, and I promise you that man, or someone like him, will appear in one of my books in the upcoming years.

Inspiration is everywhere, my friend!

Inspiration is everywhere, my friends
Inspiration is everywhere, my friends

It’s Time to Go

Always time to go . . . or, as my dad was fond of saying, “always move forward, Bill. Never give up ground you’ve won.”

I’m trying, Dad! I’m trying!

Have a brilliant week, all of you, and thank you!

I will leave you with some lyrics by Dan Fogelberg and his song “Whispers in the Wind.” They have always reminded me of my muse.

Like a wraith she ambles aimlessly
Through the mists along the shore
She wraps the foggy night around her
Like a warming shawl
And leaves wildflowers at my door
She comes to me when she needs company
And weaves her web around my soul
She comes to me to free those wild,
Burning, passion fires
That she cannot control
And by the morning light I know
That she'll be gone
And then the lonely hours begin
And all she leaves behind
To find her in the dawn
Are whispers in the wind

2019 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)

“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)