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The Writer's Mailbag: Installment #304

Updated on April 13, 2020
billybuc profile image

Bill is a freelance writer. Bill is an author. Bill is a human. What "expertise" he may have has been gained from experience.

Bone Weary and Soul Happy

My wife and I have attacked our To-do list with a vengeance during this Coronavirus lock-down thing, and I mean with a vengeance.

I sleep quite well lately, thank you very much.

Painting and preparing the garden and cleaning all around and downsizing and runs to the city dump and . . . and . . . and . . .

There is no end to it, which should be discouraging, and yet it is oddly satisfying.

Toss in two mile daily walks with the dogs and you have two elderly (LOL) people who collapse into bed at night and sleep the sleep of the self-righteous.

How about you? How are you doing during this upheaval to our lives? Having trouble? If you want to reach out, I’d be happy to be your pen pal. Email me at holland1145@yahoo.com and we can connect, or you can call me if you want to speak to a real human being. My number is 360-878-1757. Just let me know in advance you are calling because calls without names attached are usually someone trying to sell me something, and I don’t answer those calls.

Anyway, if you need to talk to someone, and you are feeling depressed and/or disconnected, I’m around and willing.

Let’s do this Mailbag thing, okay?

The Mail  Room!
The Mail Room!

Organization Tips

From William: “Bill, I have a lot of information on writing stored from various sources, emails, different authors, Youtube, etc. What I don't have is organized information. Is there a quick way I can organize this mess in a logical manner so I can find what I need when I need it? I'm sure you have an answer. Thanks in advance.”

William, that question is a first, so congratulations!

I organize all of my stuff on the computer by simply creating folders. I have a folder for clients, I have a folder for activities I’m involved in, and I have folders for writing projects which are pending. That works for me and it’s a very simple solution as long as my computer doesn’t totally crash. Lol

There are quite a few online apps and programs which can help you, and the include the following:

  • Google Docs
  • Microsoft OneNote
  • Trello
  • Canva
  • Evernote
  • Airtable
  • Asana
  • Penzu

Check them out and see if any of them are what you need. Several of them are free, so why not?

My best organizational tool
My best organizational tool

Publishing Rights

From Greg: “Hi Bill - you seem to be just about the most knowledgeable among the Hubbers on this site, so I'm coming to you with a question. Hope you can answer it:


“Let's say I write something and post it on here, then down the road decide I want to publish it elsewhere. Like , say, an essay on some major event in my life for example. Then downstream I decide I want to publish a memoir, like you did (I'd also like to know if you went through a publisher to publish your memoir, which I saw on Amazon)...can I use the story I publish on HubPages and put it in a subsequent printed publication? I guess I think I am asking if the material I put on here is mine or, if by virtue of posting it on HubPages it's not mine any more in some sort of complicated way.

“Thanks for any help you can offer on this front. Hope you have a good Tuesday.”

Greg, I give you this from the HubPages terms of use:

(a) Our Platform may allow you and other users to post or otherwise submit comments, messages, photos, ratings, and other materials (collectively, “User Content”) on Partner Content, Author Content, or otherwise on the Platform. You grant Maven a perpetual, irrevocable, nonexclusive, royalty-free, worldwide, fully paid, and sublicensable license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, publicly perform and display your User Content and any name, username or likeness provided in connection with your User Content for any purpose and in all media formats and channels now known or later developed without compensation to you for any purpose.

Please note the word “nonexclusive” in that section.

Now allow me to clarify using my own experience and pertaining to your specific question.

I wrote a book titled “Resurrecting Tobias” and in that book I included ten “articles” which were posted on HP. In my recent memoir, “And the Blind Shall See,” I included, verbatim, an article from HP. It is perfectly all right to do so.

The problems arise when we are reproducing the HP online information to another online site, but even that seems to be a hit and miss thing. I always post a link to my HP articles to social media. That is fine! I have posted HP articles on my blog, verbatim, and that is sometimes all right and sometimes not all right. Sometimes HP will flag me for duplication, and sometimes they won’t.

I sold an article I had on HP to an online article and HP immediately flagged it as a duplicate.

My advice, and I’m certainly not a lawyer, is go ahead and use an article in your memoir, but if you are using that article on more than one online site, you might want to remove it from HP to avoid problems.

Having said all of that, check the comments below because I’m sure the correct answer will be given to us by Heidi sooner or later. She had knowledge about this stuff I will never have. My approach to HP is hit and miss. IN other words, I do it until they tell me I can’t do it. Lol Not exactly a professional approach, but there you have it.

These are all mine, so back off, HP!
These are all mine, so back off, HP!

Excerpt From My Latest Novel

We have a small Mailbag today, so allow me to share an excerpt from “Shadows Across the Pond,” my latest “Shadow” novel. I hope you enjoy!

“He did not fear death, and that made him a most dangerous opponent. Fear crippled. Fear took split-seconds of reaction time away from a man, rendering him vulnerable, and Striker would not allow that to happen. There was either an afterlife, or there was nothing, when one died. Neither sounded particularly frightening to Striker, and he often wondered why so many true believers feared dying. It seemed counterproductive and a bit inconsistent to Striker.

“Pain, on the other hand, should be, and was, feared by most humans, and that was completely logical to Striker. Pain was crippling. Pain could be incapacitating. Pain could rob a man of his principles, of his honor, and of his manhood. Pain could be used in any investigation. Killing was only an option when no other option was available. Pimps understood that truth. Abusive husbands understood it, as did CIA interrogators. You did not kill the goose who laid the golden eggs, not until every possible egg had been laid. At that point the goose was no longer valuable.”

Have a Fabulous Week

I’m serious about my offer. These are unsettling times, and many people are finding this to be depressing and “unmanageable.” If you are one of those people, and you need someone to “talk” to, I’m available. Just email me or call me, and we’ll both grow stronger through the connection.

And if you are looking for a writing coach, email me and we’ll do a little one-on-one. I work cheap.

Have a fabulous week, all of you, and remember to do all things with love.

Bill

2020 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)’

“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”

working

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