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The Writer's Mailbag: Installment Twenty-One

Updated on November 16, 2014

Here We Go Again

We’re still going strong, thank you very much. This is the game where anyone can play. All you have to do is ask a question about writing and then sit back and wait for me to answer it. There are no fees, no requirements, and no player to be named later. How simple is that?

So here is the latest batch of questions. Hopefully I’ll answer them to everyone’s satisfaction.

If you have a question, leave it in the comment section below. If you don’t have a question, then just kick back and learn from others.

Shall we begin?

The series continues
The series continues | Source

What Do You Do When…..?

From Patti: “What do you do when you get discouraged? Do you ever get discouraged? There are days when I just want to throw up my hands and scream.”

Do I ever get discouraged, Patti? Oh, yes, at least once a week. I’m just good at hiding it.

Seriously, is there a writer, or musician, or artist, who does not get discouraged? If so I’d love to meet them and try some of that juice they’re drinking.

When I get discouraged I talk to my wife. She is my greatest cheerleader, and she just won’t allow me to get too down about this insane path I’m on. It always works. She keeps my head on straight.

I also, from time to time, will read about famous authors who struggled, the Steinbecks and MacDonalds who labored for years in obscurity before someone noticed them. I draw strength knowing that almost all writers have to pay their dues in blood, sweat, and yes, tears.

My wife’s son has his own band. They have played the tavern scene for ten years now, hoping to be discovered. Ten years! I asked him why and he told me the answer I knew he would….because he loves creating music.

Well, I love creating stories.

Books That Just Don’t Have Legs

From Peter: “I’ve been working on a book for six months, but try as I may, I can’t seem to stretch it out to book length. I’m at 50,000 words and don’t have anything else to give. What can I do?”

My first response, Peter, is to walk away from it. Put it on a shelf and leave it for a few months, then come back and see if the characters can stretch it out for you. I’ve written often about getting to know our characters and then allowing them to tell the story. Try it!

The second response is that you may just have a short story or novella, and it will never be a book, and that’s okay. If it ain’t there it ain’t there, so to speak. You can’t force that which is not there. After you have told the story, fleshed out the characters, and expanded on the scenes, there is very little else to be done.

Ebook and print-on-demand
Ebook and print-on-demand | Source

The Ebook Revolution

From Shane: “What do you think of ebooks and their impact on literature?”

My goodness….where does one begin with a question like this one?

There is no doubt that the evolution of ebooks has changed the book industry, but I don’t know that it has changed literature at all. If it has changed literature, then it is by lowering the standards a bit. The good news is that anyone can write and publish an ebook. The bad news is that anyone can write and publish an ebook.

I could ramble on about this forever. I still believe that the cream will rise to the top. Good writing is good writing, whether it be a traditionally published book or an ebook. Conversely, bad writing is bad writing no matter what form it takes. My biggest problem with ebooks is that it is too easy to get published, and that means that for some, little effort will go into the writing of the book, and I think every single book written and published should be stained with blood, sweat, and tears.

Just my opinion, so there you go, and if that opinion sounds a bit snobbish, well, I guess it is. I believe in the power of finely-crafted words.

Making Money on Hubpages

From Lisa: “Does anyone really make money on HubPages?”

Well, okay, I guess we need to know what kind of money Lisa is talking about. I know that I make money. I’m assuming that my friends do as well. They tell me they do, and I have no reason to think they are lying to me.

Do people make good money on HP? I know some writers who make hundreds each month and again, I don’t think they are just saying that. I think it is possible if you write the right kind of articles. Craft articles are huge and can generate big money. “How to” articles can do the same. Articles about saving money and finance do well. It really depends on the subject matter and how well you market your article with pics, sidebars, polls, etc.

Those of us who do none of those things, and write poetry, short stories, or essays, well, let’s just say the money is smaller in amount and leave it at that.

You have to be patient on HubPages. It can take six months to a year to start seeing payments, but once you do see them, then they come on a regular basis…until Panda arrives, the earnings drop for a few months, then slowly go back up.

That’s just the nature of this game.

Making a Name for Yourself

From Bob: “What’s the best way to become known in the writing business?”

Yep, good luck!

Okay, I’m being silly. Sorry about that. I don’t know if there is a best way. I know what has to be done to have a chance at being known. I know you have to work hard. I know you have to market your writing like your financial life depends on it. I know you have to interact in the writing community, and I know you have to continue to study the craft and never stop learning.

And then you have to have some luck. Your writing has to be in the right place at the right time, seen by the right people on a day that they are receptive to a new writer. The stars have to be perfectly aligned, and the angels have to smile down upon you.

I gain strength from the great writers before me, like Steinbeck, who labored for years without being known, and then one day it all came together perfectly and they were “discovered.” I know of no short cuts in this business. I only know to work hard, make sure I’m doing what I can be doing, and then wait for the celestial bodies to get into position.

ADVICE

From Trish: “What is the one piece of advice you would give to new writers?”

Really? One?

Okay, fine, here it is, the one piece of advice I would give: learn your craft!

There are so many factors that are out of our control in the writing business, but the one factor we all can control is improving our writing skills. There is no excuse in this area. No matter how bad a writer you are, you can improve. No matter how good a writer you are, you can improve. If you want to give yourself a fighting chance in this business, then you need to learn how to write. Without that skill, your chances of succeeding are so poor that it isn’t even worth discussing.

We'll keep doing this as long as it remains fresh, then I'll stick it in the recycling bin and come up with something new
We'll keep doing this as long as it remains fresh, then I'll stick it in the recycling bin and come up with something new | Source

That’s It for Another Week

Thanks to all who asked questions. I’ll be back next week with another installment.

Keep writing. Keep improving. Keep listening to that voice in your head that spurs you on. We write because we love to write. That right there is a pretty good incentive to continue.

2014 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)

“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”

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    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I'm very happy to hear that, aesta...thank you for covering the series. That shows your dedication to writing.

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 2 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I am learning from this series of hubs and I am really grateful. It seems as if I am getting much more confident.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Besarien, for the kind words. I do enjoy writing greatly, and I can't imagine those stars not aligning.

    • Besarien profile image

      Besarien 2 years ago

      Hi billybuc! You get discouraged but never give up. Talent and persistence is an unbeatable pairing. I have no doubt that you will succeed. Just be certain to enjoy writing and the rest of life while your stars align.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ann, you and I are alike there. I can spend hours in a library or book store, and love every minute of my stay. :) Oh well, I'm just a dinosaur and proud of it.

      Thank you my friend and Happy Thanksgiving to you.

    • Ann1Az2 profile image

      Ann1Az2 2 years ago from Orange, Texas

      Bill, you are always the encourager, which is someone we all need more often probably than we care to admit. I especially liked the question about ebooks. I think you know how I feel on the subject. My neighbor spends more time downloading books and reading them on her tablet than the time I'd spend going to the library and picking out a good book! Sometimes, we just have to let technology go!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jim, I really appreciate that. I hope you find some nuggets that will help you. I'll keep writing them as long as people like you keep finding them useful.

    • Jlbowden profile image

      James Bowden 2 years ago from Long Island, New York

      Bill:

      You have my word that I will definitely make it my priority to complete the mailbag installments that you had written. I know it will only help me and many others to not only find their inner voices, but also find that writing niche, that may have gotten lost for a bit! You'll know I've been there to read the remaining 20, by the comments I will have left! Take care!

      Jim

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jlbowden, thank you for the very kind words. As long as people find value in this series, I'll keep writing it. I really appreciate you taking the time to read the series.

    • Jlbowden profile image

      James Bowden 2 years ago from Long Island, New York

      Billy:

      A real interesting and thoroughly written article which I also thought was awesome. At least to me and hopefully many others. And thanks to those other writers as well, who asked these questions in your article.

      Otherwise there may not have been this 21st installment to read. So thank you once again for this very informative and well written article.

      I and many other writers can learn many good pointers from an already seasoned writer! Keep on penning those future installments.

      And I will keep reading them in reverse until I reach the first installment you ever wrote here on hubpages. (;

      Jlbowden

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Linda! King is always bonus for sure.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you, Deb! I'm very happy that everyone is enjoying this series.

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 2 years ago from Orlando, FL

      Once again...Excellent advice with Stephen King as an added bonus! :)

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 2 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      More informative material, as usual. Thanks again.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I will get there soon, Brad. First I have a rabbit hutch to build. :)

    • bradmasterOCcal profile image

      bradmasterOCcal 2 years ago from Orange County California

      I am counting on your teacher critique of my Color Purple hub.

      Thanks

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Brad, I will prepare myself for the shock when you write your first hub. LOL Welcome to the Hub once again.

    • bradmasterOCcal profile image

      bradmasterOCcal 2 years ago from Orange County California

      billybuc

      My wife was having a bunco party at the house, so I had to pick the movie that was the best choice. Turned out it wasn't.

      Anyway, now that I am a hubber, I am trying to navigate all the extra information on finding responses to my comments.

      Maybe I will even write a hub?

      Thanks

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      So do I, Mary. It's already far exceeded my expectations. Thank you dear friend.

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 2 years ago from New York

      I think the questions here are representative of things we all think. The best part is your honest, down to earth answers. I hope this series continues Monday after Monday.

      Voted up, useful, awesome, and interesting.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      It's funny, Brad, but that's what it reminded me of too...and I left both movies with more questions than answers. :)

    • profile image

      bradmaster from orange county ca 2 years ago

      billybuc

      Not a problem, and when I ask a question, I know you will eventually got to it.

      BTW, I saw Intersttelar today.

      It reminded my in concept of 2001 Space Odyssey on drugs.

      Even though this storyline is in the future, the theme is basis human nature. Survival is the focus, but the choice is yourself, your family, or the world at large.

      Just sharing, this would be a skip movie for me.

      Thanks

      bradmasterOC

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Michael my friend, if you find out how to lengthen a work day, please let me know. I need at least six more hours per day to accomplish what I want to accomplish in this lifetime. And then I probably won't make it. :)

      blessings my friend, and thank you.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Brad, I'm not about to disregard the question, but you'll have to wait until next Monday for the answer. :) It would take me too long to answer it here and now, but I promise I'll get to it.

      Thanks my friend. I love your questions. They make me think.

    • Michael-Milec profile image

      Michael-Milec 2 years ago

      You just continue adding wisdom to the wise. Everyone willing has chance to become one as you said at the cost of hard work. Sounds so familiar and tastes so sweet. Actually it s one of the most famous , to my assumption a first ' 'advice ' (they called it a commandment) to fallen man - 'you want to eat, work to your sweat'- paraphrasing. (If giving source might be despised .) You already know my weak strong point where I go in first place to avoid discouragement. Oh yes it's so popular, everybody has chance to entertain this discouragement phenomena, just to quickly realize that it's a moment to search for next better alternative. We are given brain to use.

      Voted awesome and useful.

      ( One day, maybe soon somehow I will reach that age where they add more hours to your working days to do all you want and need accomplish [ ha ha ] ).

      Have a happy day, my friend- happiness is a blessing anyway.

    • profile image

      bradmaster from orange county ca 2 years ago

      billybuc

      Wow, over a half million served. I understand that is how McDonalds started. lol

      Looking forward to hearing about the one millionth served.

      A question just popped into my mind.

      How would you compare Edgar Allan Poe, with Stephen Kings, and lets throw in Machievelli.

      It is interesting to me because all three of them are out of the box, and they all know the dark side of humans. In that respect King might be different because his focus is not on the people.

      Feel free to disregard this quesstion. It won't hurt my feelings at all.

      Thanks for the kind words.

      bradmasterOC

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      yes it is,vkwok....and you are a good writer....and your stories are interesting....hold onto the dream my friend.

    • vkwok profile image

      Victor W. Kwok 2 years ago from Hawaii

      Hey Bill. I agree with what you said in the section about the Ebook Revolution. It doesn't matter in what form the book comes out in, it's still writing.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Brad, I have no answers for your last questions, but I've wondered the same thing.

      Total views for me...I know I passed the half-million mark a couple months ago....when I hit a million I'll let you know. :)

      Thanks my friend...I always enjoy your comments.

    • profile image

      bradmaster from orange county ca 2 years ago

      bilybuc

      Good questions, answers, and comments.

      Your popularity is huge, and I wonder how many total views you have accrued since writing on hp?

      I understand that there are only 7 original writings, not sure what they are by name or even type

      But I think that Television and Movie writers have used all of them.

      It is like gramdmas's reciopes have bee passed around and everyone wants to use them regardless of their cooking expertise.

      I have a very limited range of shows that I can watch because I lack the ability to disconnect my brain for enterainment.

      Unless it is a pure fiction like Marvel movies,I find some plots whlly beyond belief.

      I kow that is my problem.but haow many times can a hero be causght by the bad guys and survive. How many times can a hero that hs the skll to shoot the eye of a squirell at a thousand feet, misse the bad guys across a room, and still maintain his aa as a hero.

      Thanks

      brdmasterOC

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Audrey, what good is knowledge and experience if we don't share it? If someone can answer that question to my satisfaction, I'm all ears.

      Thank you for your very kind and loving words.

      love,

      bill

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      Audrey Hunt 2 years ago from Nashville Tn.

      You give so much Bill. The words one-in-a-million take on a whole new meaning since meeting you. Yes - you are genuine, the real thing. You spread your knowledge and expertise so we as writers can spread our wings and fly. I love your passion. Thanks for caring. Thanks for sacrificing your valuable time on our behalf.

      Love,

      Audrey

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Exactly, Iris! I couldn't agree more, but then I always agree with you. :) Thank you my gifted friend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you ChitrangadaSharan. The nice thing about these questions is that many are thinking the same thing, so they are useful for many.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you so much, Alicia. The readers are doing all my work for me, and I always appreciate that. :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you truthfornow. I always appreciate you being here.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks, Sandra. I have written a hub about that, but I'll answer it in next week's mailbag.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Awww, thanks Faith. I do love this community of gifted writers.

      I hope you are well. Thank you dear friend.

      blessings always

      bill

    • Iris Draak profile image

      Cristen Iris 2 years ago from Boise, Idaho

      Bill, these are always good. And to Patti I would say, read these types of things. Sometimes it's encouraging just to know that you aren't the only one who gets discouraged.

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 2 years ago from New Delhi, India

      Another very helpful hub for everyone. Some very common questions, which even I wanted to ask and you gave an expert's advice as usual.

      Thanks for sharing this FAQ series!

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 2 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thanks for adding some more helpful tips for writers to your series, Bill. I'm enjoying reading your growing collection of suggestions.

    • truthfornow profile image

      truthfornow 2 years ago from New Orleans, LA

      Thoughtful answers to some good questions. I especially enjoyed the videos that were included.

    • Sandra Eastman profile image

      Sandra Joy Eastman 2 years ago from Robbinsdale MN

      Bill

      Just reading over the comments and agree with Heidi that marketing is primary. Perhaps you've answered the question already but perhaps for a future question some tips for marketing ideas that work as opposed to those that are a waste of time.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 2 years ago from southern USA

      Another fine installment here and how wonderful it is that your mailbag is once again overflowing with pertinent questions for today's writers. You are certainly one to provide great insight with your personal experience!

      Blessings and peace always

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sandra, WOW...thank you. I'm really a very shy person...I never look for the limelight. All I wanted to do here was become a part of the community and maybe help some beginners along the way. Believe me, I have received far more than I've given.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jaye, that really is kind of you to say. To answer an un-asked question, I never hear from HP management or staff. I suspect it really makes no difference to them if I'm above ground writing or below ground as a memory, but I'm fine with that. I love the community and people like you fill me with inspiration.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Awww, shoot, Bill, that is so kind of you to say. My suspicious is HubPages would go on making their profit with or without me....but it is nice to know people like you respect me. Thank you and Happy Monday to you.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I do trust you, drbj, and I thank you sincerely.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Heidi, where would I be without your marketing savvy? I knew I could count on you to weigh in, and once again you were right on.

      Happy Monday to you and be careful in that weather.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Very true, Flourish. I'm done it many times on articles and once on a book, and what I needed was waiting for my return. :) Thanks for being here.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Rachael. This type of series is always a bit of a gamble just for the reason you mentioned. I had one week when I had to ask for questions, but other than that they have come regularly. I expect it to die a slow death but for now, the patient is still alive.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Brian, I'm going to do some research on your question. I'll have a quality answer for you on Monday. I know what I would do, but I'll wait before stating that. :) Thanks my friend.

    • Sandra Eastman profile image

      Sandra Joy Eastman 2 years ago from Robbinsdale MN

      Wow Bill. Just think if you made a dollar for every question, every answer and every fan. Your help and advice is invaluable and it is obvious you put your heart and soul into all of it. In every writing forum there seems to be one bright star that shines so brightly it cannot be ignored. That is you my friend and it is so much appreciated.

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      Jaye Denman 2 years ago from Deep South, USA

      Thanks, Bill, for another great 'fix' of writing inspiration. I think one reason so many writers on HP look forward to your 'weekly mailbag' is because you tell it like it rather than sugarcoating your answers.

      By the way, I hope the HP team is reading your mailbag (and these comments), too. As others pointed out, the site is lucky to have you and your hubs on board.

      Voted Up++ and shared

      Jaye

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      Bill De Giulio 2 years ago from Massachusetts

      Great questions and great answers. Just a wonderful series you have going Bill. I have say Bill that Hubpages is so much more enjoyable with you here. I wonder if the folks who own HubPages are aware of the impact you have here. Do they realize how lucky they are to have you as a contributing member?

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      drbj and sherry 2 years ago from south Florida

      What a great asset you are to Hubpages, Billy. As well as to all those whose questions you answered so well from your depth of knowledge and innate sense of what constitutes excellent writing. You have become a Master, my friend. Trust me.

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      Heidi Thorne 2 years ago from Chicago Area

      Happy Monday! I've weighed in on the ebook issue before. But it's the same argument that goes for social media. The medium is nothing, just a delivery system that, inevitably, will change with technological advances. I liken it to saying, "Well, because we're not using rotary dial phones, the conversations just won't be that great." Okay, I'm being facetious.

      As you note, the ease with which ebooks can be published allows for some truly poor quality work. But I say let the market be the judge. I saw a 2013 Huffington Post article that said the average ebook earns less than $500. Here's the link: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/peter-winkler/famous...

      And--you know I'm going to go down this road--whether an ebook (or any book) is a success depends on how YOU market it! The medium doesn't matter... the marketing does.

      Have a great week ahead!

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 years ago from USA

      I agree with you about putting a piece of writing down and coming back to it when it's not working. A fresh look is sometimes all you need.

    • RachaelOhalloran profile image

      Rachael O'Halloran 2 years ago from United States

      When I started my hubs about Q & A copyright infringement questions about 5 1/2 months ago, the questions came pretty regularly. But they have slackened off considerably so that I have gone back to focusing one article on each question now. Being away for 6 weeks didn't help matters any. I'm glad this format has worked out well for you and is successful; with your following I'd expect nothing less. The questions are always refreshing and your answers are spot on. I look forward to reading these articles even if I don't comment each time. Keep up the great work. :)

    • B. Leekley profile image

      Brian Leekley 2 years ago from Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA

      Up, Useful, and Interesting. All excellent answers, well expressed, to good questions.

      Question: I have started work on revising a novel. It was about 51,000 words long. I am taking out unnecessary details that are a drag on the forward movement of the story. I expect to reduce it from short novel length (which few publishers want) to novella length (which fewer publishers want). Aside from self-publishing platforms, such as ebooks, do you know of markets for novellas, that is, markets that pay either a royalty or a flat sum and that require the quality imprimatur of an editor? I know about Narrative Magazine. Do you know of other markets for novellas and short novels? Or should I resign myself to self-publishing an ebook? Or?

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Michelle, patience and talent will take you a long way. You have the talent....and you are working on the patience...now you just have to put in the time. :) Thanks my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sheila, I have no doubt that they are. I'm finding that there are some excellent writers who are never heard of. Thanks for that very true statement.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jo, great question, and one I have a ready answer to...although I still might use it in the mailbag. I did exactly that in my last novel. Resurrecting Tobias has ten former articles sprinkled throughout it, and I've been told it works well, so there you go. I think as long as there is a common thread then there is no danger in doing it.

      Your other option would work as well, although I'm still not convinced that short ebooks are a recipe for success. It all depends on the marketing.

      Thanks for the question and best wishes to you, Jo!

      bill

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      Michelle Scoggins 2 years ago from Fresno, CA

      Great message this week Bill. What I took from it all is that I should have patience and know it will take time. I am settled with that piece of knowledge. I really liked the response to Patti's question - we all have moments of discouragement. However, I have found that when things are tough the end product demonstrates the difficulty and shines brighter. Have a great week :)

    • profile image

      Sheila Myers 2 years ago

      I like your comment about ebooks. I have some really bad ones, but most of them are just as good as those by the big named authors.

    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 2 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      Bill, another super Q&A session, the mailbag is going from strength to strength, I'm loving it, and here's one for you. I've been looking at some of my short stories and started thinking about the possibility of working some of them into a story I'm attempting to write. Could merging existing stories into a completely new one be a recipe for disaster, or do you think there's a chance that this may actually work? Alternatively, I could write a few more short stories and publish them as stand alone stories for outlets such as Kindle. This is not necessarily for the Mailbag, an email will do nicely. :) Take care and my best to you my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      You are very welcome, Bill, and I thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      , abdullah javed, those are very kind words of praise, and I thank you, sir! I will try to live up to your praise in the future.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ruby, helping others is my salvation, so this comes from a very selfish motive. :) Thank you dear friend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks, Frank. I'll do that my friend.

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      William Leverne Smith 2 years ago from Hollister, MO

      Another good one. We all appreciate encouragement. Thanks for continuing to do what you do! ;-)

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      muhammad abdullah javed 2 years ago

      An excellent and guiding hub as usual. Learnt a lot in particular regarding the discouraging and e publishing issues. Over all its enlightening. What I admire is the flow of your words very simple and straight from heart. If we ponder over the factors that have contributed in making a gentlemen of our time - Billybuc - spontaneously your better half, cheerleader, come into the frame of mind. Excellent sir. May God bless both of you many more happy years.

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      Ruby Jean Fuller 2 years ago from Southern Illinois

      I love how you never tire of encouraging other writers. Love this mailbag series..

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      Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton

      Your answers in this 21 .. seem genuine and they come from..get this.. real experience.. :) You tell it like it is.. so bravo to 21... keep them coming Billybuc :)

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Manatita. I do enjoy this series and I'm glad my friends do as well.

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Good evening Buildreps...get some sleep. I'm tired just hearing about your all-night session. :) Thanks for the visit my friend.

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Carb Diva, and I'm with you on the time flying by. So much to do and so little time. :)

      Thanks for spending part of your Monday with me.

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      manatita44 2 years ago from london

      Your good and solid advice continues, as always, my friend. Keep it up!

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      Buildreps 2 years ago from Europe

      Good morning, Bill! It's here evening already. I worked whole night on my latest Hub. Good advice to learn your craft - that's the whole thing.

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      Linda Lum 2 years ago from Washington State, USA

      Good questions, good answers, and good grief it's Monday again? These weeks are flying by much too quickly. Thanks for sharing your mailbag with us--I learn something each week.

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Good one, Maria. That's a first...the junk mail line. Love it, and...

      love to you

      bill

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      It's not long at all, Ann, and I thank you. Isn't it great to have someone to tell us what great writers we are? LOL We know they are biased and full of love-filled b.s., but it feels good anyway.

      As for HP and the quality of some articles, i don't understand it at all...and some poorly-written articles become HOTD, and that really annoys the hell out of me. :)

      Happy Monday my friend, and thank you.

      bill

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      And I thank you, John! Have a great week.

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Bill. That was a kind thing for you to say, and I appreciate it. Happy Monday to you!

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      You are very welcome, Melissa. You just brightened up my Monday with that comment. :) Happy Monday to you!

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Well thank you, Sha. I look forward to it as well. I hope you are feeling better my friend.

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      Maria Jordan 2 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

      There's never any 'junk mail' in this mail bag...good stuff, Bill!

      Hope you have a great week...Love, Maria

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      Ann Carr 2 years ago from SW England

      I think there's a certain amount of luck in being in the right place at the right time, as long as you're a good writer to start with.

      I'm fed up with seeing badly written hubs on hubpages and many of them apparently really successful - how can that happen on a site that's supposed to encourage good writing?!!! Is it because the general reading public's standard of reading is low, or that they don't care? It's the one thing that really makes my blood boil.

      I agree with your advice about leaving a piece of writing and going back to it after a long-ish interval; it's surprising what a refreshed outlook can do. Rarely do I come back to something and find it as I expected it to be; sometimes I don't even recognise it. Occasionally it's better than I thought, sometimes worse. The latter is why I review something because I can correct wrongs and change things before it's too late!

      I have a muse in my daughter who cheers me up when I'm on a downer with my writing. She tells me how great I am and even though I know she's biased, it cheers me up!

      Enjoy your Monday and your week, bill!

      Ann

      PS. Sorry, just realised this is a bit long - I get carried away, or should be!

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      John Messingham 2 years ago from East Kilbride, Scotland

      Another great set of answers Bill.

      Thanks for sharing.

      John

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      William Kovacic 2 years ago from Pleasant Gap, PA

      Happy Monday morning Bill,

      As the Mama's and Papa's used to sing - "Monday, Monday. Cant' trust that day." Well, I don't know about the rest of the day, but I know the mail bag will be here. Thanks again for more important information. Even as I write at times, I find myself applying some of the things you discuss. Thanks for teaching us!

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      Melissa Propp 2 years ago from Minnesota

      Monday is not my favorite day of the week...but this series definitely gives me something to look forward to. Thanks for brightening up my Monday blahs every week with these installments!

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      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      Another week of great questions and answers. I look forward to this every Monday. It's a nice way to start the week.

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      LOL...Sally, Bev is available when and if you need her. I'll tell her you might be calling soon. :)

      Thank you, Sally, and have a great week.

      bill

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Breakfastpop, if you are happy then you are doing all right in my book. Carry on my friend, and thank you.

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      Sally Gulbrandsen 2 years ago from Norfolk

      Hi Billy, I so agree with you about e-books. The more I see of them, the more I think an Editor is worth his or her commission.

      By the way, I am having one of those days - could I talk to your wife too please?

      You don't have to answer the question next week either - I should have it figures out by that time:)

      You have a great week Billy

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      breakfastpop 2 years ago

      You always give such great advice. I write because I have to. I suppose if I applied myself I could earn more, but I'm happy!! Up, always useful and awesome.

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      DJ, I have a phone number your husband can call if he gets hungry....1-800-GETITYOURSELF....give it a try. LOL

      Thanks my friend. Good luck this week.

      bill

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      DJ Anderson 2 years ago

      Mailbag Monday!! Is it here already?

      I've been meaning to ask you if this works like a Genie in a Bottle?

      If I make a wish, will it somehow come true?

      I would like a couple of days with absolutely no interferences. No phone,

      no hungry husband. He has unrealistic demands...like he wants be fed

      every single day! I know, it's crazy, isn't it?

      Anyway, great information, here.

      Happy Monday, Bill!!

      DJ.

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks for being first and always here....I hope you have a fabulous week my friend.

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      Janine Huldie 2 years ago from New York, New York

      Bill, always such sound and great advice. Once again just can't thank you ever enough for it! Have a great Monday now and week ahead! :)