ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Writer's Mailbag: Installment One-Hundred and Ten

Updated on August 15, 2016

A Tough Week

I’m happy to report my wife is back home and a tough week has ended. I send out a huge thank you to the staff at Capital Medical Center for the caring and loving attention they gave Bev, and an equally huge thank you for all the kindness you all showed us with your well-wishes and prayers. I am blessed to have thousands of online friends who genuinely care about me, and I can’t begin to tell you how cool that is.

We are back to normal and that means the mail has arrived.

Shall we?

Welcome to the Mail Room
Welcome to the Mail Room | Source

IMAGINATION

From Linda: “I am in the midst of reading a fiction-based-on-fact story about the life of Ernest Hemingway. He wrote powerfully about running with the bulls in Spain, and did so by totally immersing himself into the story. He became the story and it became him--they were inseperable. Could he have accomplished the same writing without being there? I rather doubt it. So where am I going with this? Does a great writer need to fully experience (not simply imagine) that of which they write, or did Hemingway suffer from a lack of imagination?”

This is what I love about the Mailbag, questions like this one that make me think, ponder, ruminate, and question. Thank you, Linda!

I doubt seriously if Hemingway lacked imagination, and the reason I say that is “The Old Man and the Sea.” His last great work of fiction, the “Old Man” was not about Hemingway in any real sense. About that novel, Hemingway said: “No good book has ever been written that has in it symbols arrived at beforehand and stuck in .... I tried to make a real old man, a real boy, a real sea and a real fish and real sharks. But if I made them good and true enough they would mean many things.”

Ernest Hemingway in 1954[4]

That is what great writers do. That is the power of imagination in the hands of a craftsman. I do believe Hemingway totally immersed himself in that fishing story, even though it never actually happened to him. I think a writer who has lived a rich life, who has experienced much, can put himself/herself in practically any literary situation and have a “reality” about it and the way they write it. Human emotions are shared by us all. How we would react to certain situations are shared by us all. Specifics cloud the reality that we are all, basically, the same, and our imagined reactions to a fictionalized situation are probably very accurate to what our reactions would be if we actually lived that same situation.

Make sense?

Imagine.....
Imagine..... | Source

SCOOP

From Eric: “Just a short question you might just answer here. Do you sometimes feel like "scoop" the old time investigative reporter when you write about the facts of your imagination?”

I like that reference, Eric, and I understand it.

I’ll tell you what I feel like when I’m writing fiction: the luckiest human being on the planet. Out of the seven billion people on this planet, very few can actually write a good story of fiction. I can, and I think that is pretty cool. And out of those seven billion, only one person can write like me, and that is me, and I find that fantastically cool!

IN SEARCH OF GREATNESS?

From Zulma: “Question for you, Bill. We know your favourite writers are masters of the craft and have produced stories that will live for ages. My question is do you suppose they set out to create such magnum opuses or did they just want to write a good story?”

Zulma, I want to believe they set out to simply write a good story. What kind of ego would it take to sit down and believe you were going to write a classic? I don’t think Harper Lee had that kind of ego when she began to pen “Mockingbird.”

I can only speak for me, though, and I know when I begin a new book, my goal is to tell the best story possible within the confines of my talent. To hope for the level of Lee, or Steinbeck, would seem, to me, to beg for failure. That’s why I gave myself a tag “greatestunknownauthor.” I want to be the best Bill Holland I can be, the greatest William D. Holland the world has ever experienced, and while I’m in that process, I will be relatively unknown, so I want to be the greatest unknown. If I ever go beyond that, well, that would be icing on the cake.

Independent Bookstores

From Allie: “How do you get a book placed in a local, independent bookstore?”

Allie, you ask nicely!

Next question!

I was going to leave my answer at that but I was afraid it would seem I was being flippant, so let’s give it a bit more.

It really is that simple. You go into the bookstore and you speak to the store manager or owner. It would be helpful if you had a copy of your book with you, and I also think it would be helpful if you had a flyer or brochure providing information about you, the author.

You explain that you want your book in their store, and chances are they will say they want to read it first before committing. After they read it, if they consider it worthwhile, you work out a percentage of the sale that they get and the percentage you get….usually in the 60-40 range. And then you are off and running. Some will want to just buy your book wholesale from you, and some will want a consignment deal. You are your own marketing manager so negotiate a deal you can live with.

I have found local, independent bookstores to be very receptive to local writers, as long as you’ve got game and your writing is worthwhile.

Good luck!

Somewhere in that crowd is a plagiarist!
Somewhere in that crowd is a plagiarist! | Source

Lack of Support

From Trish: “I was wondering how you handle the lack of support that seems to be the norm for a writer. Heck, Bill, I have family members who have never read my work. That gets a bit discouraging? Do you have the same problem and if so, how do you deal with it?”

Yes, Trish, I think it is the norm. My wife Bev read my very first novel and hasn’t read any of my books since then. It’s not that she isn’t supportive. It’s just that she gets into a book too much, and my dark style of writing in the “Shadow” series and the “Billy the Kid” series is too much for her to handle. She literally cannot sleep at night if she reads some of my stuff. I’m got a son and step-kids who have not read my books, and extended family that has never even read one of my articles.

Oh well! I know they support me but for whatever reason, they just can’t get around to reading one of my books.

On the other hand, I have loyal followers I have never met who have read every one of my creations.

Go figure!

Here’s the thing: I love to write, and during those times when I’m feeling under-appreciated, it is that love of writing that carries me through. That has to be the carrot we all crave or else, why do it? If the act of creating a work of art isn’t enough for a writer, or an artist, or sculptor, or musician, well, then, maybe they weren’t meant to create.

Find inner satisfaction in the fact that you are doing something wonderful.

PLAGIARISM

From Linda: “Here's a topic for the mailbag--the issue of plagiarism reared its ugly head at the RNC a few weeks ago. I was shocked at how many people wrote it off as "no big deal". But to those of us who are writers it is a VERY big deal.”

You just snuck this one under the deadline wire, Linda, so thank you!

I think people are, at times, a bit confused about my attitude towards plagiarism, especially with regards to our articles being stolen online. I have probably twenty articles on HP that have been stolen and yes, it is a big deal…..and now here comes the “but”….but I can’t stop it. Sure, I can fill out the forms, which take time, but while I’m filling out one form another of my articles is being stolen. This is the reality of online writing. There is no adequate way to stop plagiarism from happening. The authorities can only catch people after the fact, and the punishment is not a deterrent at all.

So, while I’m pissed off that it happens, I’m also resigned to the fact that there is no real satisfactory way for any of us to fight back.

I’ll never understand people thinking it is all right to steal online and put their name on the stolen work. It is such a foreign concept for me that I can’t wrap my brain around that kind of depravity.

MORE NEXT WEEK

Thanks for hanging with me again. I’ll have snacks out next week if you want to stop by again. Until then, write your butts off and enjoy every minute of the creative process.

2016 William D. Holland (aka billybuc) #greatestunknownauthor

“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Janine Huldie profile image

      Janine Huldie 10 months ago from New York, New York

      Aw, so good to see you back here this week and just glad all is on the mend with Bev and send continued prayers and good thoughts that it stays this way now. Have w wonderful and better week ahead now, too!! :)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Janine and Happy Monday to you! All is well here and for that I am grateful.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 10 months ago from USA

      Good questions, especially the Hemingway one. Touring his house was inspiring because you could see how the sand and sea featured so prominently in his work. I just wish he hadn't taken such a tragic path.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Very true, Flourish! We've lost many a great talent because of that tragic path.

      Thank you!

    • Eldon Arsenaux profile image

      Eldon Arsenaux 10 months ago from Cooley, Texas

      Glad to hear Bev is doing better. Bless the hospital staff, bud.

      On imagination, I think, each of us realizes our mental processes inflect the world around us. That is, the world inside is as vivid as the world without. Hemingway wrote about 'real' people, in the same sense that your 'Billy the Kid' is real, and Santa Claus is real. It exists beyond (behind) objective reality. All stories, non-fiction and fiction, are ideational in conception. Ideational conception seems tautological. :) But I'm stickin to my toy guns.

      Anyway, I'm thankful for the support here on Hubpages. For me, at present, that is enough.

      Adios,

      -E.G.A.

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Glad to hear Bev is home and life is back to normal, Bill. I loved the questions and answers this week especially Limda's asking if writers need to actually experience what they write about to make it believable. As you said, if we have enough life experience we can imagine ourselves,in most situations. I think most writers experience a lack of support from family. My wife reads any poetry I write for her but not much of my other writing. My sons sometimes share a poem that I put on Facebook which is good but have never read my book or most of what I have written. Have a great week.

    • phoenix2327 profile image

      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 10 months ago from United Kingdom

      So, in essence, what you're saying is people like Hemingway, Steinbeck, Lee, et al just wanted to write the best story their talent was capable of producing. They fact their creations became modern classics and must-reads was a fortunate happenstance.

      Now, I'd like to ask if they were motivated to write their stories because they had something to say to the world? Did they feel there was an injustice that needed to be righted? A precious piece of wisdom that needed to be heard? Maybe spread some light-hearted tales to a weary population. All of these? None of these? Maybe this was their idea of fun.

    • Carb Diva profile image

      Linda Lum 10 months ago from Washington State, USA

      Bill, first of all I am so pleased and thankful that Bev is back home. God is good! Second, thank you for including not one but two of my questions (I was on a roll last week, wasn't I?).

      I must admit that I have not read "The Old Man and the Sea". Perhaps that is my (literary) loss, but I have a difficult time with Steinbeck's style--and I am pretty sure that my feelings about the man himself color my attitude. He might have been a creative genius, but he was also a womanizer and was probably drunk much more than he was sober. Perhaps as he matured he honed his craft, thus enabling him to write TOMATS without actually experiencing it.

      Lack of support--my sister will occasionally read one of my recipe posts, but that's about it. Mr. Carb Diva knows that I write but I'll bet you a carton of quail eggs that he couldn't name anything I've penned in the last year. {{sigh}}

      As for the issue of plagiarism--I know that over 200 of my hubs have been copied word-for-word and posted on another website...in SPANISH! Like you have neither the time nor the strength to go after each occurrence.

      My question about plagiarism was actually meant to address the issue not here on HP but within the more vast expanse of writing. My younger daughter graduated with high honors (Deans list all 4 years) with a double major in journalism and creative writing. As you might guess we are very passionate about writing and journalistic integrity. To my daughter and me stealing another's carefully crafted thoughts, feelings, expressions is the 8th deadly sin. I am more than disappointed that the issue was blown off by the pundits a few weeks ago.

      Great mailbag. You've got my mind a-spinning. Look out--I just might hit you with another question before the week is over.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks, Eldon! Bless the hospital staff indeed, my friend. As for imagination, you just summed it up beautifully. Thank you for that.

      See you down the road

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      That's good to know, John, in a "misery loves company" sort of way. LOL I wonder what it is about families?

    • jo miller profile image

      jo miller 10 months ago from Tennessee

      Great questions and great answers in this edition of your mailbag.

      I found your response about family members reading your work surprising and comforting. Maybe that's why these online writing communities are important.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Zulma, there is something about your writing voice that cracks me up. Playful by nature you are, and I totally enjoy it. I will answer your question to the best of my fading ability next Monday. Until then, have a brilliant week.

    • breakfastpop profile image

      breakfastpop 10 months ago

      The question about lack of support from family members or close friends rings true for me. Except for my husband no one reads my stuff. They say it makes them upset and nervous. Alrighty, but I don't really buy that. In any case, after all these years, I still don't understand it. People act very strangely when I say I write a blog. They never ask one single question. I find that odd and disturbing. Having said that, I write because I love to and I believe in what I do.

    • social thoughts profile image

      social thoughts 10 months ago from New Jersey

      I like the "Greatness" question. I think we all strive to be the best versions of ourselves and dream to be one of the greatest writers. I think the latter happens by accident, though, like you said.

      I'm thrilled that Bev is home!

    • Blond Logic profile image

      Mary Wickison 10 months ago from Brazil

      I'm so pleased Bev is on the mend and back at home.

      I was interested to read that the lack of support within families was the norm as I thought it was just my lot.

      When I was in school, we read Lord of The Flies, and my kids read To Kill a Mockingbird, Romeo and Juliet and others in English classes. Which if any, current books do you think will replace these in English lessons in the future? Or do you think these will still be tried and tested books, and schools will see no need to change?

      Also what are your thoughts about students watching the films in class in lieu of reading it? With an overload of homework, reading can often take a backseat, especially for slower readers.

      Have a wonderful week.

    • manatita44 profile image

      manatita44 10 months ago from london

      Well Bill, plagiarism seem to be on the increase, in other fields too. I think I read of a couple of cases in the music industry recently, and of course there is that famous thing between Michelle Obama and Trump's wife. What's not so well known is that bi-lingual people translate work to other languages and then use it as their own. Shame!

      I'm with you all the way in your first response to Linda. We seem to be close on a lot of ideas anyway. I'll just add the mystic side to it. We come here, like Christ, with a lot recorded in our inner records, because we have done them before anyway, not only in this life, but through the process of the cycle of birth and re-birth. But I'll stop here. Something to ponder.

      Some good news from you and family. Excellent! It is a great time of the year and so may the Light and gentle rays of the sun, continue to shine on you all. Excellent Hub as we've come to expect from a master craftsman.

      P.S. I note that your Hub on recipes have surfaced again. I dare say that it's needed. Much...

    • PAINTDRIPS profile image

      Denise McGill 10 months ago from Fresno CA

      And again, I loved it all. Your answers are so well thought out and amusing. I agree that creating for creating's sake is its own reward. My kids, parents, siblings and even the love of my live haven't read any of my work. That's okay because I have such a great support group here and also it is such therapy to get my thoughts out, there is no way I will stop any time soon.

      Blessings,

      Denise

    • DeborahNeyens profile image

      Deborah Neyens 10 months ago from Iowa

      Glad to hear that things are back to normal in the Holland household, Bill! And thanks for the mailbag. I especially enjoyed the Q&A on Hemingway and imagination.

    • Venkatachari M profile image

      Venkatachari M 10 months ago from Hyderabad, India

      Wonderful and very interesting mailbag. I liked the first question about imagination and the 4th one about support. I fully agree with your views and appreciate your replies.

      This line of yours is a great answer and it should be borne in mind by any writer or artist. "If the act of creating a work of art isn’t enough for a writer or an artist, or sculptor, or musician, well, then, maybe they weren’t meant to create."

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Linda, I understand completely your passion about writing and plagiarism. It seems to me that plagiarism is only a big deal in today's world if a person has the money to fight it. For the rest of us 99% we are in the proverbial creek without a paddle.

      Hemingway was a mess as a human being but man alive, he could sure capture the intricacies of the human struggle around him. I marvel at that kind of talent.

      Happy Monday my friend!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Hi Jo! It's an odd thing about family members and support...I don't really think I can come up with a good reason for it, but I know it happens to quite a few writers.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Pop, believe me, I get it. Maybe they don't understand how many hours goes into it, or the struggle of writing without any support.....I really don't know what it is but I know it is true for many of us.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      And Kailey, I know when you say you are thrilled you mean it, and that means a great deal to me. Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Mary! Great questions and I'll give you my views next Monday. As you might suspect, this old teacher does have an opinion about that homework topic. LOL

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Manatita, the now infamous case of plagiarism on Obama's speech just underlines a serious problem across the entire spectrum. How we stop it is a mystery, especially for those of us almost anonymous, but it is a problem which has to be addressed in some way.

      I hadn't noticed the hub about recipes resurfacing. Thanks for the heads-up, and blessings to you always.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      It really is strange, Denise, but it is what it is. Now in all fairness, Bev has read almost all of my 1,3000 articles, but my books she stays away from. I should be happy for that, me thinks. :)

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Deb! I appreciate your well-wishes while Bev was in the hospital. It meant a great deal to me.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you so much, Venkatachari M. I appreciate your kind words of support. Blessings to you always.

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 10 months ago from England

      Great to see that Bev is better! phew must be such a relief! good to see you back Bill!

    • cygnetbrown profile image

      Donna Brown 10 months ago from Alton, Missouri

      Hi Bill, I too am glad to hear that Bev is on the mend! Concerning writers writing what is real, as you know I write historical fiction, even though I haven't actually experienced what I write (often I have never been to the places that I accurately describe and that someone who has been there can recognise due to extensive research) I think that what a writer writes has to be REAL to the writer in some form even if it is only in the writer's imagination. Does that make sense?

    • Mel Carriere profile image

      Mel Carriere 10 months ago from San Diego California

      I feel your pain Bill. Both of my ungrateful spawn claim I'm a good writer, but they rarely, if ever, read my stuff. I would like to believe it is because they already know what I am going to say, because they have heard it all before when I wax philosophical at the kitchen table or in the car.

      The key to fighting plagiarism is to write weirdly. If you are weird enough people will avoid your articles, because their grasp of the English is shaky to begin with and that is why they are stealing. They won't get what you are trying to write, and you won't need to deadbolt the door.

      I hope there is peace in the valley again there where you live. A multitude of blessings your way, my friend.

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 10 months ago from Nashville Tn.

      It must be a huge relief to have Bev home again. This is good news. I love the 'Writer's Mailbag.' Some of the questions sent to you are ones I'd ask myself if I only could remember them in the first place. :)

    • mpropp profile image

      Melissa Propp 10 months ago from Minnesota

      Happy Monday Bill! I spent last Monday in a remote cabin (literally on Lake of the Woods) so I didn't have access to the mailbag. I thought this was the first mailbag I had missed, but it sounds like maybe I didn't miss one? I don't know what happened to Bev, but I'm very happy to hear that she sounds like she is better! I'm wishing here a speedy recovery!

      In regards to this email bag, I was a little (maybe a lot) surprised to hear that you had supportive family members who had not read your work! I thought I was the only one...lol.

      Hope you and your family have a great week!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Nell. Your continued support while Bev was sick meant a great deal to me.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Makes perfect sense to me, Donna, and I thank you for sharing it.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Mel, I'll be laughing the rest of the day over your "ungrateful spawn" line. Thanks for the great laugh and peace to you as well.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Good news for sure, my friend. As Bernie would say, a HUUUUUUUUUGE relief! LOL

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Melissa, Happy Monday! A remote cabin on the lake sounds like heaven to me. As for Bev, some unknown infection of the intestine knocked her down for ten days. They never found the cause but she's fine now, thank you!

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 10 months ago

      I enjoyed reading your response to the Hemingway question under Imagination. I believe writers can create a near-reality of almost anything. It is the passion and emotion making it so real. Thank you for yet another great installment. By the way, we are so happy you and Bev are back at home again. Blessings!

    • heidithorne profile image

      Heidi Thorne 10 months ago from Chicago Area

      Happy Mailbag Monday! Glad to hear things are improving for you and Bev.

      Re: Support. There's only a few whose support for my writing I care about: My readers and my customers (aren't they one in the same?). Everyone else? I realize it's not their thing.

      I have someone who keeps telling me to write about this or that thing. But I have zero interest in writing about those topics. Not only do I not care one wit about them, I have no expertise in them either. I write for my target audience which, obviously, this is not.

      It would be easy to get flustered by this and try to justify my work. But I just keep singing Pearl Jam's "This is Not for You" to myself.

      Have a wonderful week!

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Fuller 10 months ago from Southern Illinois

      I think my son Jackie has read one story of mine on Facebook. I don't let that bother me too much. ( Just a little. ) Some people like to read while others do not. Happy Bev is well and at home. Take care...

    • Babbyii profile image

      Barb Johnson 10 months ago from Alaska's Kenai Peninsula

      Glad to hear that Bev is on the mend. None of my family reads any of my works. My readers are all in a whole other class. Love your take on Hemingway. Thanks Bill!

      Hope you and Bev are blessed with a restful week.

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 10 months ago from California

      Glad to hear that things have calmed down a bit in your world. My stomach did a flip flop when I read your answer to Allie's question--talk about my lack of nerve--maybe that is a poet thing--but that scares me

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 10 months ago from British Columbia, Canada

      My favourite questions in your mailbag articles are the ones that I would have never thought to ask myself. When I read the questions and the answers I realize how useful they are!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Dee! It's good to have Bev home. I was kind of lost without her, quite frankly.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Heidi, I love your comment and your attitude. Do what makes you happy....it's the only way to last in this business.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Just a little indeed, Ruby! It bothers me too...just a little. LOL Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Babby! My main job now is to make sure Bev doesn't overdo things now that she's home.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      I don't know, Audrey, because I'll never be a poet.....maybe it is. :) Thanks for being here my friend and I hope your summer has been a good one.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      That's very nice of you, Alicia. Thank you so much.

    • Buildreps profile image

      Buildreps 10 months ago from Europe

      I'm happy to see your wife is healthy and back home again. That's what counts the most. Take care and have a great week together with Bev!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks so much, Buildreps. Hopefully this stuff won't return. Best wishes to you and yours.

    • bdegiulio profile image

      Bill De Giulio 10 months ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Bill. A great week for the mailbag. I also have about 15 articles that have been stolen and I have given up trying to do anything about it. It takes time and does not always produce results. Have a great week and glad to hear that Bev is home and doing well.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Bill! It is what it is, plagiarism. I'm afraid there is no stopping it, so let's just move on.

      Happy Wednesday to you, my friend.

    • phoenix2327 profile image

      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 10 months ago from United Kingdom

      Hey, Bill. Got another question for you. At the moment, your experimenting with a new voice for 'When Angels Sing.' My question is do you think certain voices just naturally lend themselves well to certain genres. Also, with regard to 1st and 3rd person, do you think the same applies.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Great questions, Zulma. Thank you! Let's hope I'm up to the task with my answers.

    • lifegate profile image

      William Kovacic 10 months ago from Pleasant Gap, PA

      Hi Bill,

      Glad to hear Bev is home and doing better. More great stuff. You wrote to Allie, "you work out a percentage of the sale that they get and the percentage you get….usually in the 60-40 range." I'm assuming the bookstore gets the 60, and the writer gets the 40. Just wondering. Thanks for another educational mailbag!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      It just depends on the bookstore, Bill. I've gotten the 60 before, and I've gotten the 40 before.

      Thanks for the well-wishes for Bev. I'm glad that's behind us.

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 10 months ago from Victoria, Australia

      An interesting read. The difficult bit is getting up the courage to go to the bookstore - and once they've accepted my books, in going back to see if any have been sold and if they need more copies.

    • ChristyWrites profile image

      Christy Birmingham 10 months ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Hi Bill, firstly, I am glad Bev is back home and I hope she continues to feel better with each day that passes. I enjoyed how you answered the first question, from Linda, about Hemingway. My, what a good writer she chose as the example! Indeed being in a situation can lend itself well to enriching details of a story but chances are good that even Hemingway did not write everything as it really happened. Writers take creative license a lot, even when they ARE in a situation they are writing about for a project. ;)

      Great mix of questions here and I liked the instalment, including your concise answers :)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Blossom, I'm smiling as I read your comment. All true...the return trip might be the hardest.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Hi Christy, and hugs are heading your way. Thanks for your views, views I agree with. I am a perfect example of creative license for situations I have been in or have witnessed. That's what fiction writers do!

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 10 months ago from SW England

      The support thing is weird, isn't it? I have one family member who supports me whole-heartedly and reads as much of my work as time allows. The rest make nice noises but don't really 'get it'. But that doesn't bother me; it 's my thing and they respect that even though they might not dive in and read everything. I know they understand that I love to write and that's enough for me.

      Plagiarism is another thing; it makes me mad! However, like you, I have better things to do with my time than go after sad people who don't have the wherewithall to produce their own work. Shame on them and I hope they don't sleep well!

      Brilliant mail-bag as always, bill!

      Thinking of some questions for you and will let you know asap.

      Enjoy the rest of a fantastic Friday!

      Ann

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 10 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      I just spent five days, literally unconnected with my elder (31) year old son. So I am late getting back to my favorites. No question the non-connectivity led to connectivity between two people. He composes music and writes poetry. Your points of view here are greatly appreciated, and as I always say they mean as much toward leading a good life as they do being a good writer.

      So we accept that you as a writer can portray a dark side. So much so that your darling Bev is not inclined to go there. But the writing is excellent and compelling. So I assume you lived some darkness. At this point and at this time, are you somewhat pleased that you did, in order to give you the juice to actually bring us there so we may experience it without the pain and damage?

      Pretty strange question I concede.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      I'm slow with the response, Ann, but thank you for the question. Sad people and I hope they don't sleep well...amen to that, my friend.

      bill

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 10 months ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      You share your best and everyone can from your work.

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 10 months ago from Riga, Latvia

      So glad to hear the Bev is home. Blessings to you both. When it comes to plagerizing to me that is as foreign a concept as it possibly could be. What joy could I expect from compliments and comments on an article which I have not written? It would be like accepting an award for doing nothing. BTW even though it is a voluntary award which you are nominated for and can accept or not I still am proud to have been nominated for The Bloggers Recognition Award. This is for my armchair travel blog which is doing surprisingly well. Here is the link if you have not seen it floating about FB. Hope you have an inspirational new week.

      https://yamarella.wordpress.com/2016/08/19/blogger...

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 10 months ago from southern USA

      Hi Bill,

      I'm sorry I've missed this past Monday's Mailbag and tomorrow will be another one! Been having to take care of my mother-in-law and get her situated. So happy your dear Bev is back home and mending.

      Good observations about Hemingway for sure!

      The lack of support from family and friends seems to be somewhat of a phenomenon for surely our family and friends know just how passionate we are about what is on our hearts to pour out of us? However, maybe they don't? My daughter will read some of my articles on HP LOL. Well, as my dear mother used to say, "To each his own."

      I hope you have more interesting questions tomorrow!

      Peace and blessings always

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Not strange at all, Eric, and I'll have an answer for you....well...today I think. Good to see you connected again, my friend. Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you very much, DDE!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Well congratulations on that nomination, Rasma! That's a great recognition, my friend, and justly deserved.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Welcome back, Faith. I hope your mother-in-law is well. With you taking care of her I'm sure she will be fine soon...at least I hope she will be.

      Thanks for making the effort to visit me. Happy Monday to you!

      bill

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 10 months ago from Central Florida

      I'm glad life is finally getting back to normal for you and Bev, Bill. Excellent mailbag this week! Do you have any of your novels in local bookstores?

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      That's next on the list of to-do things, Sha. I'm hopelessly behind on my schedule, but I'll valiantly move forward one step at a time.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 10 months ago from Stillwater, OK

      I am so happy that Bev is all right! Great topics, as always.

      As far as writing goes, I enjoy the fact that my birding columns are so popular and every reader knows who I am, and not just in Stillwater, OK. I began doing this column to teach people that we must stop to think about our birds, what they do, and what will happen to the earth IF they are eradicated. A supportive editor also helped that was willing to take a chance on me, too.

      The popularity of that column also got me off my duff to get some serious education, so that people would know that I knew what I was talking about, too. My enthusiasm for the topic seems to be catching and would-be birders also actually began birding with vigor. It is having a snowball effect, and the word is getting out that we must save wildlife, through the actions of other folks that are doing the same thing. I am getting my wish that wildlife is being cared for an appreciated.

      You are doing the same thing, firing up writers to be the best that they can be!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Deb, that's very kind of you. I marvel at the continued success you are having with your series. It really is heartwarming to see, and it is such an important cause you are furthering. Bravo my friend!

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 10 months ago from Shelton

      First, I'm glad everything is back to Normal.. bless your family, and secondly, no matter how busy we get..I always make time for the mail bags.. et al.. Hey I like the quick reply to how do we get our books to independent book stores...NEXT! LOL as always, helpful.. a bit witty at times.. and mostly, Constant...

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Frank! We are all well in this family and I appreciate all the support and prayers along the way. A bit witty??? I'm slipping, buddy! I used to be a lot witty. LOL

    • lawrence01 profile image

      Lawrence Hebb 9 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Bill

      Great stuff here, and I love the first question.

      A few years ago a mate of mine was a medic with the Joint Services freefall parachute school. One time they had this older guy come to do a freefall jump so they asked him why he wanted to do it.

      The guy replied that he was writing a book and wanted to experience what he was going to be writing about.

      They asked him what he thought and got the reply "I'm scared stiff, but how can I write about what I've never experienced?"

      The 'guy' was Frederick Forsythe and I've remembered that statement since then (even though I've written about stuff I haven't actually done) as I think us writers have to put ourselves in the position of 'What would it feel like? would I be scared?'

      Glad to hear Bev is 'on the mend'

      Lawrence

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 9 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Great story, Lawrence. Thanks for sharing that. I love the spirit of the tale...we do have to step into our characters' skins and feel the scene and the action. Otherwise it will never seem believable.

      All is well here. Bev feels a 1000 times better. Thanks for mentioning her.

      bill

    Click to Rate This Article