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The Writer's Mailbag: Installment 291

Updated on January 13, 2020

A Gentle Reminder

I was reading a book the other day about creating podcasts. It continues to be an item on my “to do” list and yes, I’m getting closer to making it a reality.

Now I mention that because, in that book, one of the chapters dealt with a very important reminder for all who make podcasts: first, and foremost, always remember that you are storytellers!

And that is true for all writers as well. We are storytellers. We come from a rich tradition of storytellers. Our ancestors sat around campfires and told stories to one another. Our ancient relatives told bedtime stories to children and grandchildren. Storytelling is one of the oldest means of communication, time-honored and vitally important as a means of making sure our history does not die.

Remember that the next time you slap together an article for HP, or the next time you struggle with a chapter in your novel.

What you do is important!

Let’s see what Mailbag questions we have this week.

The Mail Room
The Mail Room

Free Books?

From Mary: “I have a question you or one of your readers may be able to answer. I have seen ads (mainly on Facebook), for 'free books' cooking, gardening etc. These are not a digital copy, but a hard copy. The company refuses to send a digital copy or a PDF. The cost of postage was high and that was to the USA. I have a feeling it is not a way of shifting books for reviews, but skimming money from the postage. Any idea what their line of thinking may be? Plus they are paying for Facebook ads. I didn't fall off the cabbage truck yesterday and this just smacks of dishonesty, in my opinion.”

Mary, I’ve been checking out Facebook ever since you sent this question and I still haven’t seen such an offer. Not that I’m doubting you because I’m not. It’s just curious that you receive the ads but I don’t.

Whatever the case may be, this smells of a scam to me. I can’t find any information about it and no negative comments about the practice, but that does not keep me from thinking this is a scam and should be avoided. What’s amazing to me is the fact that Facebook can’t do a better job of policing their own site. They have the best and the brightest working for Facebook, so what’s the problem?

My personal rule to live by regarding Facebook: never send money for any offer found on that site.

CHALLENGES

From Sha: “Now for the question I promised in a comment to a previous post and I'll preface it by saying I'd like to get back in the writing groove in 2020. I've been MIA since I went back to work five years ago. Holy Mackerel! Five years ago???

“Back in 2013, you frequently posted contests or challenges based on picture prompts. My muse found those very motivating. She apparently loves a visual that jump starts her creative juices. I know other writers enjoyed your picture prompt challenges as well. They really helped your fellow writers spread their wings and fly.

“So, my question is this: will you consider bringing back your picture prompt challenges? They don't even have to be contests, just something to help your fellow writers exercise their creativity. I know you're really busy with your new writing endeavors, downsizing, etc. So, how about one or two challenges per month?

“What say you, my friend?”

What say I, Sha? I say you are a pain in my patootie! LOL

Fine! What am I going to say to such a lovely request? I’ll do it for you. I can’t commit to a certain frequency, but I will have one for you in a week or so.

As always, thank you for your friendship and belief in me.

Writing prompts coming soon!
Writing prompts coming soon!

SCREENPLAYS

From Faith: “Do you have any pointers on writing a screenplay?”

Holy cow, Faith, I don’t even know where to start. Screenplays are a whole different cat than what we are used to as story or article writers. They are not easy to write, and there is a specific format which must be followed when writing one.

My first tip is to get your hands on a real screenplay to familiarize yourself with the format.

My second tip, get yourself a screenplay app like “Final Draft” or “Montage.” Those provide the format for you and free you up to just worry about filling in the blanks like settings, dialogue, action,etc.

My third tip is to dive in and give it a go. There is only one way to get better at something like this, and that’s to do it. Screenplays can be daunting. You are taking an existing story and basically directing the film on paper. This is storytelling on steroids, and so far it has seemed too much for this writer to tackle.

I’ve included a video for you which might help.

Writing Coach

From Brad: “I’m still a little confused. I saw where you were offering your services as a writing coach, but I’m still a bit hazy regarding what it is a writing coach does? Can you clarify please?”

Brad, let me break this down to the most basic component: I can make you a better writer! That is my job as a writing coach. I am your cheerleader, but I am also an unbiased mechanic who will break your engine down, do a diagnostic, and tell you what you need to do to have your engine running smoothly.

Or put another way. If you were a basketball player, and you needed to improve your freethrow shooting, the job of a coach would be to break down your shooting motion to make it as pure as possible. There are correct mechanics involved in shooting a basketball. A good coach knows those mechanics. The same is true of a writing coach. I can do that for you. I can take your writing and raise it to the next level by teaching you proper mechanics.

Encourage a child and you may end up with a writer
Encourage a child and you may end up with a writer

Why Write?

From Mr. Happy: “I was just sitting here contemplating writing and why people write. At first, I thought of asking You why You are writing a biography because I was thinking about how I have been writing journal entries here and there, for the past 30 years. It's just keeping track of some things while I'm walking the path of Life. A biography seems like a journal entry of sorts (in my opinion). That's how I thought about it.

Maybe You already answered that, I don't know but even more than that, why do You write in general? And/or why did You chose to write to begin with?”

It’s such a complicated question, Mr. Happy, and yet so very simple.

Pick one: I write because I want to be heard, something which is not easy for an introvert. I write because I am a teacher, and writing allows me to teach to thousands. I write because I don’t want to be forgotten, and I don’t want my family and their story to be forgotten. I write because I have always loved storytellers, and I want to be known as a storyteller. I write because I think “ordinary” people have extraordinary things to say which relate to us all.

I began writing because I was encouraged and praised many decades ago. I found I loved it. I loved crafting stories. I loved living in imaginary worlds. I loved entertaining people with my words.

I loved, and still love today, everything about writing.

Back to Storytelling

I was watching an Amazon show, “Modern Love,” last night, and the first episode had me in tears. I was openly weeping while watching it. To me it was brilliant storytelling, and it reminded me of why I love writing so much. If I do my job correctly, I will move people in a similar manner. I will touch their hearts. I will provide, for them, a very real, human experience, and I just think that is too cool for words.

What you do is important!

My memoir will be published in a week. It is important to me. I do not want my family, and the story of my family, to die with my death. I do not want my story to die when I pass on. I am one of billions, as you are, and every damned one of our stories should be . .. is . .. important!

And I’ll say one more thing about my memoir: I think it is an important reminder, for all who read it, that we all share some very basic commonalities. We are not so terribly different, you and I. Makes no difference where you are from or what your culture is or your political or religious beliefs . . . we are human beings. If we could just spend a little more time concentrating on the commonalities instead of the differences . . .

Anyway, “And The Blind Shall See” will be released within a week. I hope you enjoy it.

2020 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)

“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”

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    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      8 days ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks for weighing in on the scam business, Dora, and for your unwavering support of me as a writer. I appreciate you.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      8 days ago from The Caribbean

      Bill, I love your answer to why you write. "Ordinary" writers do have significant things to say. True, but you're not, by any means, ordinary.

      Concerning the first question, expensive mailing for free or discounted book is certainly a scam. The scammers intend to profit from the postage fees, and the book may not even be worth it.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      9 days ago from Olympia, WA

      I appreciate that, Li-Jen...thank you very much.

    • Li-Jen Hew profile image

      Li-Jen Hew 

      9 days ago

      Hi Bill, thanks for sharing and I like that you want your stories to be remembered. There will always be readers who find commonalities in the stories you share and that itself is extraordinary. Haha. I think the website cookies cause scams too.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      10 days ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Faith and God bless you!

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 

      10 days ago from southern USA

      That’s cool ... you have your thing going on already, and you’re good at it. God bless

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      11 days ago from Olympia, WA

      Well, Devika, I hope you are adventurous. Thank you!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      11 days ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks for your thoughts, Chitrangada Sharan! I hope you can find the time to take part in the challenge.

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 

      12 days ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Informative to all writers.

      The new challenge sounds adventurous.

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 

      12 days ago from New Delhi, India

      Interesting and useful questions and answers and as always, learnt from them.

      Why people write?

      I believe, writing is a form of expression. Those who write regularly, would agree with me, that it’s somewhat addictive, as well.

      I saw that you have shared some writing prompts. Would love to participate.

      Thanks for sharing another wonderful mailbag.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      12 days ago from Olympia, WA

      I don't know that, Faith, but I'm going to find out. I just don't know if I've got this in me, but I'm going to give it some thought.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 

      13 days ago from southern USA

      Bill, you really should give it a shot, especially being you already have your own books from which to write a screenplay! Some of your books would certainly make excellent thrillers. From my research, I learned that one page of a screenplay is equal to one minute of screen time of a movie. Movies are generally two hours long, so that translates into 120 pages for a movie. If you were to write one for a tv series, of course each episode is a whole lot shorter, keeping in mind commercials. I’ve been watching that SVU crime show and paying close attention to each scene and the dialogue. That show has really good writers. Each line propels the story, which is key, I’ve learned. In other words ... not a lot of wasted chit chat going on, but only that which moves the story forward. I’m not sure if one must be a member of the Screenwriters’ Guild or not to submit screenplays, but probably so. Do you know?

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      13 days ago from Olympia, WA

      Storytelling is not for every writer, Venkatachari M, and yet I believe all writers are storytellers. I will leave you with that riddle.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      13 days ago from Olympia, WA

      Keep ranting, Heidi. I love your rants about this industry.

      I'm not much for the online marketing games...I will give my books away, here in Olympia, to people I know...just a way to give them something of myself, a gesture of friendship....but online is too impersonal for that type of gesture.

      That probably doesn't make sense but there you go anyway.

    • Venkatachari M profile image

      Venkatachari M 

      13 days ago from Hyderabad, India

      Very great mailbag with some good tips from you.

      I am one of those who lack the story-telling ability. I simply narrate a fragmental-type story that lacks the appeal and flow. I published a book in Hindi on the amazon kdp-pen-to-publish contest. When I read it this fact is clearly evident.

      I also support the idea of your return to the picture-prompt challenges that can help us a lot in improving our writing skills.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      13 days ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Faith! Maybe I will....I do love a challenge.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      13 days ago from Olympia, WA

      Look at you, Verlie, taking that old car apart....truth be told, I like working on stuff like that, but that doesn't prevent me from cussing a bit while I do it. lol Good luck!

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 

      2 weeks ago from southern USA

      Oh ... meant to mention that I believe you would be a great screenwriter being you’re so good at writing dialogue, Bill. Give it a shot ... you’ll never know until you try!

    • heidithorne profile image

      Heidi Thorne 

      2 weeks ago from Chicago Area

      Happy Mailbag Monday/Tuesday!

      Re: Free Books. This is a tactic that some aggressive marketers are using. I think it's ridiculous. I heard about a few marketers that are sending people books or other content on USB drives via mail. I cannot even imagine the cost of that. Here's the deal with that. It's called sales funnels. They're trying to get people into their sales process by giving away free stuff.

      Free eBooks went out of style a few years ago. No one cares because everyone knows eBooks are cheap to produce, and most of the free ones are trash or glorified sales brochures. So now these folks are going old school and sending physical products.

      Some of the folks who do it are super-successful (or so everyone thinks). But I see it as sort of a circular, go-nowhere proposition for those who opt in. Kind of like, "send me $1 and I'll show you how to get lots of people to send you $1."

      Okay, I can't rant on anymore.

      Looking forward to your memoir announcement! And your podcast in 2020? Maybe? Have a great week!

    • snakeslane profile image

      Verlie Burroughs 

      2 weeks ago from Canada

      Ya, it's a bummer. Looks like I'll have to take the door panel off, and replace a broken rod, and possibly the latch which is complicated (finding parts) for a 1997 Mazda. Sigh I tell ya, as my old friend Simon likes to say "If it's not one thing, it's two things".

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      I don't know what's happening with HP and missing comments. I will check the filter...thanks for suggesting that. Stay warm and safe.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Verlie, I have never heard of that...the door handle breaking. Sigh! Sending you warm vibes, my friend.

    • snakeslane profile image

      Verlie Burroughs 

      2 weeks ago from Canada

      So it's so cold here my driver's side door handle broke yesterday, and I'm stranded at the moment. Lucky it happened at home.

    • snakeslane profile image

      Verlie Burroughs 

      2 weeks ago from Canada

      Morning Bill, I posted two comments yesterday, and neither have shewn in your comments feed. I'm excited about your new challenge, hope you get this. Did you check your spam filter. I don't know. On with the show!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Always my pleasure, Kari. I'll have those prompts for you tomorrow, my friend.

    • k@ri profile image

      Kari Poulsen 

      2 weeks ago from Ohio

      Bill, I am eagerly awaiting the writer's prompts. I like that type of challenge also. I never thought much about my writing being important. It is a nice thought. It puts writing in a new light for me. Thanks.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Bill! The memoir will be available Friday. Happy New Year to you, buddy.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      About two inches of snow for us, Linda. Nothing to be concerned with, although we might get another six tomorrow, which would be a problem for sure. Stay warm and safe, my friend.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you very much, Mary, and best wishes to you in 2020.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Snow this morning here, MizB, and it's lovely to look at, as long as it doesn't stick around for too long. The dogs are loving it.

      Loss leader for sure. I used them quite often when I owned retail businesses. It can be a very effective sales tool.

      Time to take the dogs on a walk in the snow. Take care of you, my friend.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      The nice thing about snow in Olympia, Linda, is it doesn't stick around for long. I can handle a day or two of it, and it is pretty to look at and walk the dogs in.

      Clean your kitchen? Sha should be flogged! lol

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks always Alyssa. The challenge will come out tomorrow.

      Snow here. We can finally relate with the rest of the country regarding winter weather.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks for weighing in on that free stuff, John. I agree completely. It's been a long time since someone gave me something of value for free. I think it's against human nature to do so. lol

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Manatita! Blessings always!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      And you are very kind, Ruby, and I thank you. The prompt comes tomorrow.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Sha! I'm happy I wrote it. It needed to be written.

      Your prompt comes tomorrow, my friend. Get ready to write!

      love,

      bill

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Oh my, Flourish! You really do have to vent that which is inside of you. lol I love where you went with that.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      I concur, Mr. Happy!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Denise thank God you haven't exploded.That would be messy, would it not?

      I don't trust any free offers. I hate being that suspicious, but self-preservation is a powerful motivator.

      Blessings always

    • bdegiulio profile image

      Bill De Giulio 

      2 weeks ago from Massachusetts

      Some interesting questions in the mailbag this week. Looking forward to your memoir and hopefully a podcast in 2020. Have a great week, Bill.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 

      2 weeks ago from British Columbia, Canada

      You received an interesting set of questions this week. I hope the snow isn't a major problem for you. It can be attractive, but I don't like walking on slippery sidewalks and roads.

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 

      2 weeks ago from Ontario, Canada

      You have helped so many of us to love writing and I can sense the strong love you have for it. I, too, want to improve in storytelling.

    • MizBejabbers profile image

      Doris James MizBejabbers 

      2 weeks ago from Beautiful South

      I haven’t seen ads for free books on Facebook, but I kept seeing an ad for a cookbook very cheap. I liked it so I bit. They got me hooked and as soon as I gave them my credit card number, they started their pitch. It started out that "I had to have their $100 worth of additional cookbooks for just $30,” which I didn’t bite. Then they started into something else to get more money, so I dumped the whole thing without submitting the order. I saw nothing illegal so far, but had I bought all their extras, they could have been into my card for mucho dinero.

      Bill, as an old ad writer myself from years ago, I know what a loss leader is, and some of these ads on FB are legitimately promoting loss leaders. I paid shipping on a free novelty ring from a company, about $3, and was very pleased with it. I probably with buy something from them in the future. I have bought some jewelry and some clothing from some ads run on FB and have been very happy with my purchases. Just check out the company’s real website before you decide to make a purchase. I guess my testimony is long enough so I won’t comment any further. Just hoping you stay warm and dry like we’re trying to. One day it’s 67 and dry and the next it’s 40 and flooding the streets. No snow yet, my friend.

    • Carb Diva profile image

      Linda Lum 

      2 weeks ago from Washington State, USA

      Bill, I wrote earlier this morning, but perhaps my message got lost in a snowdrift (hahaha). Your segment on writing screenplays is very timely; my dear friend who just self-published her first children's book is already having dreams of a screenplay based on that story. May I say right her and right now that I will NOT go on that journey, but I have happily shared your advice and video with her.

      Yes, Sha is a pain in the patoot (she actually made me clean my kitchen today, can you believe it?) but you and I love her so what are you gonna do.

      I can't promise that I'll participate in the photo prompt challenge, but I love reading what other creative minds come up with.

      Thank you for keeping this series going. Love to you and Bev, and stay warm. It's supposed to jump down into the 20's tonight.

    • Alyssa Nichol profile image

      Alyssa 

      2 weeks ago from Ohio

      Fantastic mailbag! I'm definitely looking forward to this picture prompt challenge. :) Mary, you are not alone. There are plenty of ads on all the social media platforms offering a "free item," you just pay shipping and handling. Ha! My thought is how exactly is that free? I've had companies reach out to me on Instagram with the same spiel.

      Have a wonderful week everyone!

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 

      2 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Bill, “And the Blind Shall See” will be on my reading list for sure. Great questions this week and thanks for the bare bones of what a writing coach does. As for Mary’s comment about free oops advertised on Facebook. I get ads for free jewellery; rings, bracelets, watches etc that says you only pay for postage. If you decide to purchase one you find the postage is as high as paying for the item anyway...very little is free in this life. But, I do agree with Denise’s son’s idea of giving the first book in a series, trilogy etc away free to get readers in.

    • manatita44 profile image

      manatita44 

      2 weeks ago from london

      Thanks Bill

      Looking forward to seeing your book. My support and thanks for another mail bag.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Richert 

      2 weeks ago from Southern Illinois

      I must watch " modern Love " and I will. I hope you will give us challenges again as Sha requested. I loved doing that, and like I always say, " You are the best friend to us writers, your tips, your challenges make us want to excel in writing."

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 

      2 weeks ago from Central Florida

      Bill, I look forward to "And The Blind Shall See". I know at first, when writing a memoir was presented to you on your blog, you were hesitant. Now you have a very strong reason for doing so. I'm sure your mom and dad are smiling at you from above. You will perpetuate the Holland legacy through baring your soul on paper. Your love, trials, tribulations, and successes will be exposed for all to see and be inspired by. William D Holland will leave an indelible mark on this earth.

      Love,

      Your Favorite Pain in the Patootie!

      Sha

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 

      2 weeks ago from USA

      That beautiful scene immediately told me it was the moment after a man was chased down then forcibly drowned by two other men after he refused to give the answers they were looking for. I don’t have time for writing prompts but wished I did. It would be fun. Wild animals will come along and gnaw on him.

    • Mr. Happy profile image

      Mr. Happy 

      2 weeks ago from Toronto, Canada

      "I write/paint because I'm compelled to do it by something so deep in me that it would explode out of me if I did not give it vent." - Homerun!!! Haha!! Yes, that hit home for me. It matters not if anyone reads what I write because I started writing when I was 10. I couldn't stop if I wanted to. I'd write with my own blood on walls of caves if I had no paper, pen, or computers LOL

    • PAINTDRIPS profile image

      Denise McGill 

      2 weeks ago from Fresno CA

      I know what Mary is talking about. I've seen some of those free book ads on Facebook myself. I never click onto them because I know there is a cost for everything even when you say it is free. My son has self-published a series of young adult fantasy books and offers the first book free. That is really genius because the first book sucks you into the plot and you want to purchase the next 4 books in the series just to find out how it all turns out. That seems more of a legitimate free book offer than the ones I've seen on Facebook. Another great mailbag installment. By the way, I would add to your list, I write/paint because I'm compelled to do it by something so deep in me that it would explode out of me if I did not give it vent.

      Blessings,

      Denise

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      I think that is wise, Mary! The whole Facebook thing is sketchy to me. I use it for sure, but I don't know how trusting I am.

      Snow here and I am jealous of you. lol

    • Blond Logic profile image

      Mary Wickison 

      2 weeks ago from Brazil

      Bill, I too have been looking for those books without luck. Perhaps they have had complaints.

      I will avoid them. An interesting blend of questions, this week. Screenplays and philosophy. Love it.

      Have a great week.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Happy Monday Melissa! One month at a time...no minimum requirements and no, not all slots have been filled. :) Thanks for asking.

      Our first snow arrived. Not much but enough to make me cold. lol

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      That's not unheard of at all, Faith. You can certainly write a screenplay from your imagination. It wouldn't be that much different from writing a novel. You are just telling a story from a different format.

      Best wishes with your project. I look forward to hearing how it goes.

    • mpropp profile image

      Melissa Propp 

      2 weeks ago from Minnesota

      Happy Monday Bill! For your writing coach services, do people pay for 1 month only? Or do they continue to do it month after month? And have all your slots been filled? I am not in a position to do it at the moment, but I am very curious as to how that works!

      Have a great and productive week!

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 

      2 weeks ago from southern USA

      Thank you for the pointers on writing a screenplay, Bill!

      I’m actually thinking of writing a screenplay from a story (or stories) I have dreamed up in my head ... hence, my imagination, which is key. Yes, reading great screenplays is a must!

      I believe I read where one can write a screenplay without already having a written story ... or is that unheard of in this area?

      I appreciate the video and software app information.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      That is very kind of you to say, Shaloo...thank you!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Pamela! Our first snow of the year is on the ground, and I am cold. LOL Happy Monday to you.

    • swalia profile image

      Shaloo Walia 

      2 weeks ago from India

      Your passion for writing is so inspiring!!

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      2 weeks ago from Sunny Florida

      “And The Blind Shall See” is an excellent title for your memoirs. I also liked all the reasons you listed for writing. I noticed you didn't say you write for the money. LOL

      I enjoyed reading your answers to various questions, as usual. I hope you have a very good week.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Always a pleasure, Mr. Happy! Your comments always bring a smile to my face. I love reading about how you see the world around you...another value of writing...it brings us closer together...allows for a certain degree of bonding to occur...and that is always a good thing, yes?

    • Mr. Happy profile image

      Mr. Happy 

      2 weeks ago from Toronto, Canada

      "I write because I want to be heard, something which is not easy for an introvert." - Well, this struck me as different. I am quite introverted and I htink that is why I write better. I can sit here quietly, watching the world flow-by and then, I can write about it. I often see myself as apart from the world and I can just sit and analyse it. I have no investment in it and no attachements. I mainly speak on morality for the sake of morality and for the sake of Spirit.

      "I write because I think “ordinary” people have extraordinary things to say which relate to us all." - Alrighty. So, I got a present for You because of what You wrote here. Now we just got to figure out how to get it to You lol

      One more thing: I think You do a great job at showing the "value" in your writing: " If I do my job correctly, I will move people in a similar manner. I will touch their hearts. I will provide, for them, a very real, human experience" (just one quick example from a bunch in this piece of writing).

      I'm outta here now. I was supposed to write something, or I thought I would, haha!! Or, I could ... I might lol Maybe ... it's always tough to get going but once started it's like a snowball going downhill - the more it goes the bigger it gets and the faster it moves. That's how it works for me anyway. Cheers!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Janine and Happy Monday to you. A little snow this morning...our first this winter.....brrrr! I need to warm up. :)

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Liz! So far I have not been inundated with people wanting me as a writing coach, but hope springs eternal.

      Wishing you a warm and pleasant January afternoon.

    • Janine Huldie profile image

      Janine Huldie 

      2 weeks ago from New York, New York

      Happy Monday, Bill and had to stop on in to see what was going on here this week. Wasn't disappointed with all your sage advice and also to see that your memoir is almost set to release. Thanks always and wishing you a wonderful week ahead now :)

    • Eurofile profile image

      Liz Westwood 

      2 weeks ago from UK

      A wealth of interesting points made here as usual. Your mailbag in itself provides great coaching material for writers.

      You make a good point about podcasts telling a story.

      In the UK I have heard it said that "there's no such thing as a free lunch". It basically means that if something is offered for free, like books in this case, there's probably a catch.

      I look forward to seeing your inspirational pictures and the writing they encourage.

      I wouldn't know where to start with a screenplay, so your advice is appreciated.

      You should be inundated with requests as a writing coach.

      Interesting and inspiring comments about the reason for writing.

      I look forward to hearing that your memoir is out.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Shing! I appreciate you taking the time to comment.

    • Shing Araya profile image

      Shing Araya 

      2 weeks ago from Cebu, Philippines

      I liked that 'encourage a child, thing'

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