The Nature of Steam – Writing Even When Everything Slows Down

I find steam-powered locomotives fascinating. These older trains take a lot to get them moving, but once they’re going it’s actually harder to stop them than it is to keep them chugging along. Picture those giant brakes and how much distance it takes for them to stop.

I wondered after the last month, and my last post’s difficult subject, how the next one would go. I settled on sharing a few things I’ve been “up to” in my “down time.” Yes, some life circumstances do knock you down, but since I always have some ideas brewing, I didn’t completely stop. I was like that chugging locomotive; little puffs of activity were still going forth.

Writing Site Move

(1) One big accomplishment over the last 45 days was getting my self-hosted website started and looking the way I wanted. I moved my site and did it myself (along with my wife’s help).

I couldn’t have done it without out the additional support of In-Motion Hosting. I’ve experienced their great customer service first-hand and benefited from the many tutorials on their site. They stopped an attack against my site and gave me instruction on how to increase security. I’ve used their 24/7 online support and their phone support and I’m thankful – the site looks great.

Writing Articles and Posts

(2) Two important posts – Previously I’d written about rising above rejection. I was overwhelmed with how much people related to that post. I wanted to visit the subject again. Four other authors contributed to the two posts. Honestly, they did most of the work. The first post went live the same day I found out about my Dad’s passing. I set the second one to post automatically the following week while I was out of town.

These two articles appeared first on the site and then I moved them here. Rejection Revisited (Part 1)Rejection Revisited (Part 2).

(3) I had three short articles that were ninety percent written. I worked on them in March and the beginning of April and then submitted them.

(4) When some time passed, I wrote and published “What to Do on Dark Days When Words Do Not Come.” This wasn’t what I’d planned, but this was the first post on this new site.

(5) The final writing item I’ve worked on is “A Light-Hearted Glossary of Writing Terms”, which is now available for free when you sign up to receive notification of new posts by email (upper right). If you’re not sure about the difference between a slush pile and a synopsis or why it matters if you get paid on acceptance vs. paid on publication, then this is for you. It’s both fun and informative.

Writing Submissions

(6) In addition, I had a short story that I’d previously submitted to Writer’s Digest, which was not accepted. I knew that the month to enter Glimmer Train’s very short fiction contest was in April. I looked my story over; I did a little polishing and sent it to them.

Glimmer Train has four months during the year where they run this contest: January, April, July, and October. They also accept submissions in several categories all year round. For Glimmer train, their very short fiction story category is under 3000 words. For the Writer’s Digest contest, the short, short story is 1500 words or under.

(7) I also received a writer’s preview copy of “The Secret Place” (Summer 2014), a quarterly devotional magazine, because I have a devotion published in it. I was excited to notice that Dr. Dennis E. Hensley, someone I’ve known and respected for a long time, was also published in this issue. Another respected writer friend, Carolyn Bennett Frasier, is also published in it. How cool is that?

To give due credit, Carolyn noticed mine before I noticed hers. I didn’t check the mail on the Saturday before Easter and didn’t see my copy until Monday afternoon. She’d already posted on Facebook about it. Carolyn also knows Dr. Dennis Hensley, and knew another writer published in this issue.

Okay, everybody sing, “It’s a small world after all; it’s a small world after all; it’s a small world after all; it’s a small, small world.” (Sorry about that).

(8) On April 29th, I found out I’d sold an article.

I’m not bragging in this post at all. I’m surprised looking back. I did take some time out to grieve and to try to take care of some others responsibilities. What I am trying to say about momentum is this:

I’m thankful for all the encouragement I’m able to give and receive. I appreciate your support. The quick reference guide I mentioned above is one way I’m showing my appreciation. If you’re already following and would like to receive this, simply drop me an email at the address that is also in the right sidebar.

Until next time, keep learning, writing, and moving forward.

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6 comments on “The Nature of Steam – Writing Even When Everything Slows Down
  1. Mike Huiwitz says:

    Keep chugging like a train. You can do it!
    Mike Huiwitz recently posted…The Revelation EffectMy Profile

  2. Julie Luek says:

    I love this. Yes keep chugging and get your mo going. Perfect!

  3. Great post, and nice update!

    And you have a perfect last name for an aficionado of steam…

    • I appreciate your feedback Andrew. And thanks for pointing that out. I actually didn’t know about the Mallet locomotive. Slightly different spelling, but we must be related somewhere down the line. 🙂 Perhaps that’s why I always liked trains.

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