MUSINGS OF A STORY MERCHANT

Friday, March 31, 2017

Time Management for Writers: The Stopwatch Method for Massive Creative Productivity

Managing your work is a fool’s game because work is infinite. Good work only creates more work; in fact, bad work creates more work too.

So the more you work the more work you will have to do. It’s basic common sense that you can’t manage an infinite commodity.

What can you manage? Time.

You not only can, but must, manage your time because time is all too finite.
They say, “If you want to get something done, find a busy person.” The busy person succeeds in getting things done because he knows how to manage his or her time.

We all have the exact same amount at our disposal: 60 minutes each hour, 24 hours each day, 168 hours each week, 8,736 hours each year. If you put one hour into a project each day for a year, you’d have worked on it for 365 hours—more than enough time to write a book, and a screenplay, and a treatment or two.
“If you place a little upon a little,” explained the ancient Greek almanac writer Hesiod in his Works and Days, “soon it becomes a lot.”

Time Management Stopwatch image

 

Time Management Should Be Easy

 

Where do you find the time to get your most important work done every day?

One memorable day in Manhattan I was delivering a broken antique wall clock to my favorite repair shop. As I completed my drop off and turned to leave, I noticed an ultra-modern stand-up clock constructed of shiny pendulums, a different metal each for hours, minutes, and seconds, all enclosed in a sleek glass case. It was simply the most beautiful timepiece I’d ever seen.

Then I realized: it had no hands. At first I thought, No wonder it’s in the shop. It’s broken. But I studied the clock more closely.

Clock for time management image

No. It was designed without hands. It was a timepiece that Salvador Dali would have been as thrilled with as I was. Time moves in its own way unless we somehow capture it.

It reminded me that time is a free force. It just happens, whether you do anything about it or not. It’s up for grabs. It doesn’t belong to your family, or to your friends, or to your day job, or to anyone but you! What you’re working on at any given moment is how you control it.

The trick is where do you find that free time?—a question busy people are asked regularly. Here’s their secret: busy people make time, for the activities they decide to prioritize. One good way to wrestle with the problem they’ve solved is to ask yourself, “Where do I lose it?” When you find the answers to that question they may shock you.

I ask writers to make a chart of their weekly hours and use it to determine how many hours they devote to each activity in their cluttered, over-stimulated lives.
Maybe you’d be surprised—or maybe not—that most people have no idea where the time goes.

They come back to me with a grand total of 182, or 199, or 82 hours of activity—until I remind them that they, like every other human, have the same 168 hours each week to spend.

Then we get serious and analyze exactly where they’re lying to themselves about the time: forgetting about the endless phone calls with friends, or the true amount of time in front of the television, or the accurate time devoted to the daily commute, or the time doing absolutely nothing but staring out the window. When we get the time inventory accurate most people are surprised at the truth. But truth is the first step to freedom, and managing your time effectively is the greatest freedom of all.

I call it “making the clock of life your clock.” I believe in this philosophy so much I haven’t worn a regular watch for nearly thirty years, despite owning a vintage wrist watch that belonged to my father and an even older pocket watch that belonged to my grandfather. The only chronograph I carry around with me is one that allows me to make life’s clock my clock:a stopwatch.

The stopwatch makes the Spanish proverb, la vida es corta pero ancha (“life is short but wide”) come true.

You can get a free stopwatch app on your cell phone! In fact, most smartphones come with a built-in stopwatch app like the Clock app on iPhones.

The Stop Watch Method of Time Management

 

The stopwatch method of time management is simple. You use it to capture time, to make sure that your Priority Writing Project is getting the amount of attention you want to give it to move it—and your career success–ahead with certainty.
You know that the wall clock, or the one on your wrist or displayed on your cell phone, has a way of running away with your day. You say you’ll work on your Priority Writing Project from seven to eight a.m. and something is certain to come along to disrupt that hour almost as though life were conspiring against you.

What’s really happening is that you’re letting life interfere with your personal time management.

Of course when the interference occurs, you tell yourself I’ll catch up later,or say, “I’ll start again tomorrow and this time protect myself from interruptions.” But over the years we discover that life usually runs rampant over any and all such resolutions.

The stopwatch method works best in a life jam-packed with stimuli and distraction. It allows you to steal time. While clocks on wrists and walls record public time, your private prime time happens only when your stopwatch is running. The stopwatch allows you to call “time out” from the game everyone else is engaged in.

Simply promise yourself you won’t go to sleep at night until, by hook or by crook, you’ve clocked on your stopwatch one hour (sixty minutes) of working on Priority Writing Project.

Turn the stopwatch ON when you’re working on it, and OFF when you get interrupted.

Your stopwatch minutes may be harvested over a six-hour period, or over a twenty-four-hour period. You steal them when you can: waiting at the dentist’s, commuting to the ferry, when your lunch appointment hasn’t shown up yet, when your cell phone dies and no one can reach you until you’ve replaced or recharged the battery, when your date for the evening calls in sick.

It takes a few days to get used to this process, but once you do you’ll recognize the power it gives you over time.

If I could give you a magic pill that guaranteed you would work on your most important goals and dreams in life for one hour each day, would you take it?
Of course! And that’s exactly what the stopwatch method of time management does—it guarantees that your most important work gets done each day if you stick to the plan.

Optimum Attention Span (OAS)

 

How do you know how much time to devote to your Priority Writing Project—or to any activity, for that matter?

That’s a function of what I call Optimum Attention Span (OAS). For some activities, like watching your favorite sports event or shopping, your OAS might be extremely wide; for others, like listening to your boss complain or to your domestic partner nag, it might be miniscule. The trick is to determine what the OAS is for that Priority Writing Project.

At the start of any project, OAS tends to be smaller; as the project gains momentum and begins to appear reachable, your OAS expands. So when you start planning to write that novel, nonfiction books, or screenplay, give yourself 30-45 minutes on the stopwatch during the first week.

But reassess OAS at the end of each week because OAS changes and evolves. By the fourth week you may well be up to an hour and a half—ninety minutes on the stopwatch.

Increasing Productivity with “Linkage”

 

Isn’t it hard to work in fits and starts?

You might very well ask that very good question. The answer is that it’s actually easier to work that way than it is to work without stopping if you employ my time-management technique of linkage, what Hemingway referred to as “leaving a little water in the well.”

Here’s how linkage works. The phone rings, so you have to turn off your stopwatch. But you let it ring one or two more times, taking that time to make a mental decision about what you’ll do when your stopwatch is running again—that is, in your next Priority Writing Project stopwatch session.

And here’s an interesting secret: it doesn’t matter what decision you make when you turn the stopwatch back on.

The minute you make that decision, as you answer the phone and go on from one activity to the next, your mind starts thinking of better decisions than the one you just made; in fact, your mind becomes increasingly motivated to get back to that Priority Writing Project because it knows exactly what it will do when the next session begins.

You’ve created an automatic linkage—that makes restarting when your stopwatch is next running no longer an occasion for blockage.
Instead, you’re fully ready to jump in and get as much out of that next session as possible before it’s interrupted by life’s next distraction.

And, yes, have a desk drawer filled with stopwatches so you can employ a different colored one for each major project you’re engaged with. Or you can use different stopwatch apps on your phone.

The stopwatch method will truly make the clock of life your clock.It’s the magic writing pill.

Dr. Kenneth Atchity (Georgetown B.A., Yale Ph.D.) has been teaching time management throughout the United States, Asia, and Europe for decades.

Books include A Writer’s Time: Making the Time to Write (ebook: Write Time: Guide to the Creative Process, from Vision through Revision—and Beyond); How to Quit Your Day Job and Live out Your Dreams; Writing Treatments that Sell (with Chi-Li Wong), Sell Your Story to Hollywood: Writer’s Pocket Guide to the Business of Show Business and, with Ridgely Goldsborough, Why? Marketing for Writers. Dr. Atchity’s more than thirty films include Meg, the Emmy-nominated Kennedy Detail, Hysteria, Erased, Joe Somebody, and Life or Something like It.

Companies serving writers include www.thewriterslifeline.com, www.storymerchant.com, and www.storymerchantbooks.com. and teaching sessions can be accessed at www.RealFastHollywoodDeal.com.


 





Free Video Training Course

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Why I Teach Online by By Devoney Looser



I might never have sought an online teaching assignment if my husband hadn’t been diagnosed with cancer. Faced with a foreseeable future of his multiple hospital stays, home recovery, and anticipated need for my amateur nursing — all while trying to care for our two children — I jumped at the chance to temporarily transition to an online teaching schedule.

Having the option to work remotely and asynchronously was a godsend. I figured my online students would have no idea if I were moderating online discussions or grading papers while sitting next to a spouse hooked up to an Oxaliplatin IV. During this family crisis, I knew I would miss being in the same room with students, and the instantaneous give-and-take of a physical classroom. I only ever envisioned online teaching as a short-term reassignment.

I certainly never expected to love it, let alone come to believe in it as a matter of social justice and feminist practice. Yet much to my surprise, I do.

Faculty objections to online teaching remain widespread in the academic circles in which I travel. At each of the universities where I’ve taught, I’ve encountered colleagues who feared or despised it, most of the time without ever actually having taught online themselves. One department I was part of even passed a resolution against online teaching. (Unsurprisingly, that university simply found others willing to design the online curriculum that the regular faculty members refused to create.)

Years later, I still hear some of the same arguments against this instructional mode:

  •     "Isn’t online teaching just a space for slacker students who don’t want to work hard, or who don’t want to take my more challenging in-person courses?"
  •     "Isn’t the university just going to steal my video lectures and replay them after I die, paying someone a pittance to grade the papers?"
  •     "Isn’t online teaching a lightweight, cheaply made version of our regular offerings?"
  •     "Isn’t online teaching all about making a buck off of a lousy product?"

My answer to all of those questions, I can now say confidently — and happily, as my husband is making a recovery from cancer — is "No." Online students are just as "present" in virtual discussions; they are just as ambitious and well-directed in their coursework; and they are every bit as hungry for knowledge as the in-person version.

Whatever you may fear to the contrary, your video lectures are not poised to become precious commodities to your employer a decade hence. Video does not age well, and savvy students are unlikely to stand for a curriculum centered on long-ago recorded images of a dead professor, passed off as up-to-date instruction.

Online teaching — like any kind of pedagogy — can be done well or poorly. It can be offered with or without appropriate workloads or challenges for students.

And as for making a buck? That depends on quality and cost to students. It’s true that online teaching is not currently subsidized by scholarships or financial aid as often as on-the-ground instruction. That varies by degree program and institution, of course. But by such logic, the very fact that online students may be paying full freight for the opportunity to earn a degree ought to put the onus on faculty members to offer good instructional value. We shouldn’t just throw up our hands.

The stereotype that online instruction is less rigorous, or that students cannot be engaged in it with appropriate rigor, isn’t borne out by my experience. Anyone who’s taught an on-the-ground class has looked out into the classroom and seen boredom or disconnection. By comparison, my online students were choosing when to log on to do their work. They seemed very tuned in when they did. It’s possible I’m just not as skilled at recognizing online students merely going through the motions, but I found them, as a group, exceptionally dedicated, motivated, and talented.

My perceptions were shaped by hearing how they ended up back in school. For most of them, an online program was their only path to a degree. They lived in rural areas, had no transportation, faced restricting disabilities, found themselves with demanding family obligations, or couldn’t find in-person courses offered at times that would allow them keep their jobs. An online education was rarely their first choice, but it was often their only option.

One of my most talented online students was a stay-at-home parent living thousands of miles away from the university. She’s raising nine children under the age of 14. In what previous era would she have been able to continue her education? At my institution (Arizona State University), we’re told that our "typical" online student is a female who, for a variety of reasons, left college the first time without taking a degree. She returns to us years afterward, often with significant financial and familial obligations. Why didn’t I realize sooner that online teaching is a feminist issue?

A chance, face-to-face encounter drove that point home to me. It was at a robust December commencement ceremony. That day I had the privilege to serve as the faculty marshal, carrying a big, heavy flag, leading hundreds of regalia-sporting faculty into the arena. I felt a little like a triumphant suffragette. How many institutions had even had female faculty marshals at their commencements in the year I was born, I wondered?

It was a meaningful ceremony to me for other reasons, too. My mother and aunt were in the crowd, visiting from a faraway state. Neither has a bachelor’s degree. As a teenager, I’d watched my mother labor to complete an associate degree at the local community college, but I was the first in my family to earn a B.A. Because my mother and other relatives couldn’t afford to travel to watch me graduate when I earned my Ph.D., they had never had a chance to see me wearing my doctoral robes. It was a big deal to me that these women who raised me were there proudly clapping in the audience on that December graduation day.

After the ceremony ended, I went outside of the arena to wait for my mom and aunt. I saw a young graduate, standing by herself, carrying one of the enormous balloons that had dropped from the ceiling during the ceremony. Everyone else around us was hugging someone or taking a photo, so we made eye contact and smiled.

"Congratulations!" I said to her, because I felt happy, and because it seemed to be the right thing to say to a new graduate standing by herself.

"Thanks!" she said, brightly.

The conversation might have ended there, but she then asked for my help. She was looking for one of her professors, she said, in order to thank her for changing her life. The problem was that she wasn’t exactly sure what this professor looked like. It had been an online course. She told me her professor’s name and discipline, but ours is a large university. I couldn’t help spot the faculty member.

I asked her more questions about her studies and future plans. She’d flown in from her snowy Midwestern state to walk at commencement. The online degree she’d just earned was her second bachelor’s. Her first had been in an on-campus experience, but this online degree, she said, meant much more. That’s because this time around, she’d studied what she was passionate about, instead of what others had wanted her to. I teach courses on Jane Austen, so her story struck me as like the heroine Anne Elliot’s in Persuasion. This student "at seven-and-twenty, thought very differently from what she had been made to think at nineteen." She stood there, before me, in her second, stunning academic bloom.

Earning her degree hadn’t been easier the second time, she said. Her online degree was actually far more challenging than her on-the-ground college experience had been. She loved that and was weighing pursuing a graduate degree. I emerged from our conversation convinced that she would go on to do great things — and I told her so. I realized that, in that moment, I must do my best to stand in for her wished-for online professor.


It was only later that I realized how she, too, had served as a stand-in for me. I wished I could have looked all of my online students in the eye and congratulated them in person, shaking their hands and thanking them for their insights, energy, and enthusiasm. I would have told them about the great things I believed they were going to go on to do. I felt the loss of that in-person exchange.

I do not, by any means, advocate for online education as a utopian pedagogical space. Indeed, events like graduation ceremonies convince me that online teaching can never supplant in-person instruction.

Even so, there was a pleasure in talking to someone else’s online student. It made me imagine the enterprise we’re engaged in as large and containing multitudes. Many of my online students — the majority of them hard-working women with very complicated lives — started out in situations like my mother’s and my aunt’s. The degrees that many of our online students are earning today would have gone unearned a generation ago.

Faculty know better than any other professional group that every reliable indicator demonstrates how a more-educated populace is to the benefit of us all. For that reason alone, online students do not deserve even a smidgen of snobbery, skepticism, or scorn. Online students deserve — like all of our students — unfailing encouragement, deep admiration, and the best instruction we have to offer. Although all signs point to my not needing to request online teaching next year, if I have the chance, I’ll choose to do it again.

Reposted from The Chronicle of Higher Education


Devoney Looser is professor of English at Arizona State University. Her latest book, The Making of Jane Austen, will be published this summer by the Johns Hopkins University Press. She’s on Twitter @devoneylooser and @Making_Jane.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Ken Atchity Will be the Keynote Speaker at The Dublin Writers' Conference, June 23-25, 2017



 


If you are new to writing, an old hand, or someone interested in how writers can
Laurence O'Bryan, Miriam O'Shea 
improve their craft, self publish successfully, or undertake the marketing necessary for any author to achieve success, this conference is for you.

Designed By Experts

Our instructors are renowned, highly-experienced, published authors, and world class experts in writing craft and online marketing, specifically for authors. This weekend conference provides practical support, valuable training and an opportunity to meet and get to know fellow writers in one of the world’s great literary cities. ..

Focused On Helping Authors

Our expanded conference takes place at the landmark Gresham hotel, in the heart of Dublin’s city center. Our goal is to help you succeed. Our digital marketing sessions for writers will show you how you can find readers in a rapidly changing world. Our writing craft sessions will help you broaden your writing skills. Our pitch session could help you to sell your story to Hollywood.

Come for just the Saturday sessions or join us on each of the three days. Anyone who books is welcome to our opening session on Friday evening, where we will introduce the instructors and welcome you. .


This event is provided by the training division of Advanced Social Media Services LTD, 5 Dame Lane, Dublin 2, Ireland.

All sessions are delivered by qualified and experienced instructors.

For our conference awards, the decision of our judges is final. We look forward to meeting you. For all our services, including our conference, in the event of any dispute, our liability is limited to a full return of fees paid only.

SIGN UP NOW – EARLY BIRD PRICING AVAILABLE


Monday, March 20, 2017

Just a little longer ...

Warner Bros. has moved back “Meg” to Aug. 10, 2018. It was previously dated for March 2, 2018.


Warner Bros. has moved back Jason Statham’s prehistoric giant shark thriller “Meg” to Aug. 10, 2018.

It was previously dated for March 2, 2018, and would have opened against an untitled Fox/Marvel film. The movie will be released in 3D and Imax. “National Treasure” helmer Jon Turteltaub is directing the film with Chinese actress Li Bingbing co-starring with Jessica McNamee, Ruby Rose, and Rainn Wilson. Shooting began in New Zealand last fall.


Read more

Time Management for Writers: The Stopwatch Method for Massive Creative Productivity

Managing your work is a fool’s game because work is infinite. Good work only creates more work; in fact, bad work creates more work too.

So the more you work the more work you will have to do. It’s basic common sense that you can’t manage an infinite commodity.

What can you manage? Time.

You not only can, but must, manage your time because time is all too finite.
They say, “If you want to get something done, find a busy person.” The busy person succeeds in getting things done because he knows how to manage his or her time.

We all have the exact same amount at our disposal: 60 minutes each hour, 24 hours each day, 168 hours each week, 8,736 hours each year. If you put one hour into a project each day for a year, you’d have worked on it for 365 hours—more than enough time to write a book, and a screenplay, and a treatment or two.
“If you place a little upon a little,” explained the ancient Greek almanac writer Hesiod in his Works and Days, “soon it becomes a lot.”

Time Management Stopwatch image

Time Management Should Be Easy

Where do you find the time to get your most important work done every day?

One memorable day in Manhattan I was delivering a broken antique wall clock to my favorite repair shop. As I completed my drop off and turned to leave, I noticed an ultra-modern stand-up clock constructed of shiny pendulums, a different metal each for hours, minutes, and seconds, all enclosed in a sleek glass case. It was simply the most beautiful timepiece I’d ever seen.

Then I realized: it had no hands. At first I thought, No wonder it’s in the shop. It’s broken. But I studied the clock more closely.

Clock for time management image

No. It was designed without hands. It was a timepiece that Salvador Dali would have been as thrilled with as I was. Time moves in its own way unless we somehow capture it.

It reminded me that time is a free force. It just happens, whether you do anything about it or not. It’s up for grabs. It doesn’t belong to your family, or to your friends, or to your day job, or to anyone but you! What you’re working on at any given moment is how you control it.

The trick is where do you find that free time?—a question busy people are asked regularly. Here’s their secret: busy people make time, for the activities they decide to prioritize. One good way to wrestle with the problem they’ve solved is to ask yourself, “Where do I lose it?” When you find the answers to that question they may shock you.

I ask writers to make a chart of their weekly hours and use it to determine how many hours they devote to each activity in their cluttered, over-stimulated lives.
Maybe you’d be surprised—or maybe not—that most people have no idea where the time goes.

They come back to me with a grand total of 182, or 199, or 82 hours of activity—until I remind them that they, like every other human, have the same 168 hours each week to spend.

Then we get serious and analyze exactly where they’re lying to themselves about the time: forgetting about the endless phone calls with friends, or the true amount of time in front of the television, or the accurate time devoted to the daily commute, or the time doing absolutely nothing but staring out the window. When we get the time inventory accurate most people are surprised at the truth. But truth is the first step to freedom, and managing your time effectively is the greatest freedom of all.

I call it “making the clock of life your clock.” I believe in this philosophy so much I haven’t worn a regular watch for nearly thirty years, despite owning a vintage wrist watch that belonged to my father and an even older pocket watch that belonged to my grandfather. The only chronograph I carry around with me is one that allows me to make life’s clock my clock:a stopwatch.

The stopwatch makes the Spanish proverb, la vida es corta pero ancha (“life is short but wide”) come true.

You can get a free stopwatch app on your cell phone! In fact, most smartphones come with a built-in stopwatch app like the Clock app on iPhones.

The Stop Watch Method of Time Management


The stopwatch method of time management is simple. You use it to capture time, to make sure that your Priority Writing Project is getting the amount of attention you want to give it to move it—and your career success–ahead with certainty.
You know that the wall clock, or the one on your wrist or displayed on your cell phone, has a way of running away with your day. You say you’ll work on your Priority Writing Project from seven to eight a.m. and something is certain to come along to disrupt that hour almost as though life were conspiring against you.

What’s really happening is that you’re letting life interfere with your personal time management.

Of course when the interference occurs, you tell yourself I’ll catch up later,or say, “I’ll start again tomorrow and this time protect myself from interruptions.” But over the years we discover that life usually runs rampant over any and all such resolutions.

The stopwatch method works best in a life jam-packed with stimuli and distraction. It allows you to steal time. While clocks on wrists and walls record public time, your private prime time happens only when your stopwatch is running. The stopwatch allows you to call “time out” from the game everyone else is engaged in.

Simply promise yourself you won’t go to sleep at night until, by hook or by crook, you’ve clocked on your stopwatch one hour (sixty minutes) of working on Priority Writing Project.

Turn the stopwatch ON when you’re working on it, and OFF when you get interrupted.

Your stopwatch minutes may be harvested over a six-hour period, or over a twenty-four-hour period. You steal them when you can: waiting at the dentist’s, commuting to the ferry, when your lunch appointment hasn’t shown up yet, when your cell phone dies and no one can reach you until you’ve replaced or recharged the battery, when your date for the evening calls in sick.

It takes a few days to get used to this process, but once you do you’ll recognize the power it gives you over time.

If I could give you a magic pill that guaranteed you would work on your most important goals and dreams in life for one hour each day, would you take it?
Of course! And that’s exactly what the stopwatch method of time management does—it guarantees that your most important work gets done each day if you stick to the plan.

Optimum Attention Span (OAS)


How do you know how much time to devote to your Priority Writing Project—or to any activity, for that matter?

That’s a function of what I call Optimum Attention Span (OAS). For some activities, like watching your favorite sports event or shopping, your OAS might be extremely wide; for others, like listening to your boss complain or to your domestic partner nag, it might be miniscule. The trick is to determine what the OAS is for that Priority Writing Project.

At the start of any project, OAS tends to be smaller; as the project gains momentum and begins to appear reachable, your OAS expands. So when you start planning to write that novel, nonfiction books, or screenplay, give yourself 30-45 minutes on the stopwatch during the first week.

But reassess OAS at the end of each week because OAS changes and evolves. By the fourth week you may well be up to an hour and a half—ninety minutes on the stopwatch.


Increasing Productivity with “Linkage”


Isn’t it hard to work in fits and starts?

You might very well ask that very good question. The answer is that it’s actually easier to work that way than it is to work without stopping if you employ my time-management technique of linkage, what Hemingway referred to as “leaving a little water in the well.”

Here’s how linkage works. The phone rings, so you have to turn off your stopwatch. But you let it ring one or two more times, taking that time to make a mental decision about what you’ll do when your stopwatch is running again—that is, in your next Priority Writing Project stopwatch session.

And here’s an interesting secret: it doesn’t matter what decision you make when you turn the stopwatch back on.

The minute you make that decision, as you answer the phone and go on from one activity to the next, your mind starts thinking of better decisions than the one you just made; in fact, your mind becomes increasingly motivated to get back to that Priority Writing Project because it knows exactly what it will do when the next session begins.

You’ve created an automatic linkage—that makes restarting when your stopwatch is next running no longer an occasion for blockage.
Instead, you’re fully ready to jump in and get as much out of that next session as possible before it’s interrupted by life’s next distraction.

And, yes, have a desk drawer filled with stopwatches so you can employ a different colored one for each major project you’re engaged with. Or you can use different stopwatch apps on your phone.

The stopwatch method will truly make the clock of life your clock.It’s the magic writing pill.


Dr. Kenneth Atchity (Georgetown B.A., Yale Ph.D.) has been teaching time management throughout the United States, Asia, and Europe for decades.

Books include A Writer’s Time: Making the Time to Write (ebook: Write Time: Guide to the Creative Process, from Vision through Revision—and Beyond); How to Quit Your Day Job and Live out Your Dreams; Writing Treatments that Sell (with Chi-Li Wong), Sell Your Story to Hollywood: Writer’s Pocket Guide to the Business of Show Business and, with Ridgely Goldsborough, Why? Marketing for Writers. Dr. Atchity’s more than thirty films include Meg, the Emmy-nominated Kennedy Detail, Hysteria, Erased, Joe Somebody, and Life or Something like It.

Companies serving writers include www.thewriterslifeline.com, www.storymerchant.com, and www.storymerchantbooks.com. and teaching sessions can be accessed at www.RealFastHollywoodDeal.com.


 







Free Video Training Course

Friday, March 17, 2017

Story Merchant Books More March Amazon eBook Deals!

FREE March 17 - 20!!

Dragonlords of Dumnonia Book 2

There is a scrap of a boy who dreams of riding a dragon, but he feels his dreams are far away, especially in the land of Drumnonia where there are dragons, riders, AND demons, gods, and elves. In the end, he becomes a dragon rider, and not just an ordinary rider either: he is the Dragonheart! Book 2 follows Shashtah's journey to becoming the most destructive weapon Centuria has ever known: The Dragon Sun.     BUY NOW




FREE March 20 - 24!!

As the transition period between the Middle Ages and modern times, the Renaissance is perhaps the most distinguished age since that of Classical Greece. Part of Harper Reference's successful Reader series, Kenneth Atchity's Renaissance Reader is a unique volume that provides a vast and varied collection of primary source documents and artwork of this fascinating period of history.      

BUY NOW



FREE March 21 - 25!

An Ed Noon Mystery!

Ed Noon's career takes a sharp turn when he is hired by the President a nuclear scientist, who has mysteriously disappeared, and with him, the designs for America's most powerful nuclear super-weapon.

BUY NOW




FREE March 21 - 25!!

An Ed Noon​ Mystery!

A voodoo cult masterminded by the fantastic Count Calypso is trying to take over the world and Ed Noon is the only private eye between Manhattan and Port-au-Prince who can stop him.

BUY NOW

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Guest Post: Where Fake News Began by Jerry Amernic


George Orwell and his epic novel 1984 are making a comeback. His character Winston Smith existed in a world where freedom and privacy have disappeared. Some think this is happening today.

But Wells also wrote War of the Worlds and because of that we can thank him for introducing us to ‘fake news,’ courtesy of a young radio broadcaster named Orson who had almost the same last name. In this case, Welles. In 1938, on the day before Halloween, Orson Welles convinced America that earth was under attack by Martians.

Sound crazy? Well, millions of listeners believed it. The next day The New York Times reported that in one community 20 families rushed out of their houses with wet towels on their faces to protect them from Martian gas. People hid in cellars, hit the road and packed their guns.

We can laugh at this today, but go back to October 30, 1938 and the world was on edge with the rise of Nazi Germany; World War II would begin less than a year later when Germany invaded Poland.

Orson Welles began his radio broadcast by saying it was based on the H. G. Wells novel War of the Worlds, but hey, humans are a strange breed in that we believe what we want to believe.

Which explains why the Protocols of the Elders of Zion – a fictional blueprint for Jewish domination of the world – still carries weight. It was published in Russia in 1903, translated into other languages and eventually went ‘viral.’ American industrialist Henry Ford, a noted anti-Semite, printed half a million copies in the U.S. alone. The Nazi propaganda machine wasted no time stirring up the masses and the Protocols found their way into German schools.

Now it’s 2017. No one trusts the media. What’s more, we don’t even know what constitutes the media and anyone can be the media. This means they can ‘broadcast’ whatever they want – whether it’s based on fact or not.

What with Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, the line between fact and fiction is no longer the blur that it once was. Today the blur doesn’t exist because everything is fact and fiction.

There’s an old joke in journalism that you should never let the facts get in the way of a good story. This notion is running rampant now and it’s not a good thing. It is a dangerous thing. Why?

Because we humans are a strange breed.




purchase on Amazon.com


Jerry Amernic is a Canadian writer of fiction and non-fiction books. He is the author of the  Holocaust-related novel 'The Last Witness'.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Story Merchant Books March Amazon eBook Deals!

A Message From Jessie:The Incredible True Story of Murder and Miracles in the Heartland by Buck Blodgett

FREE March 15 - 19!!

Is It Possible For A Story Of Murder To Turn Into Miracles?

Buy Now!





A Rage in the Heavens: The Paladin Trilogy Book 1 by James A Hillebrecht

FREE March 15 - 19!!

Against a horror stands a single man, Darius Inglorion, a holy warrior known as a Paladin, who is summoned to rally the states of the Southlands frozen by fear and treachery.

Buy Now!




Easy Money by Marc Fisher

#FREE March 14 - 18!

If you want to be successful, if you want to go from rags to riches you have to start by thinking ... It's Possible!

Waste no time and read Marc Fisher’s new book, Easy Money!

The bestselling author of The Instant Millionaire (over two million copies sold and translated into more than thirty languages) will teach you how!


Buy Now!





Rina Tham's Lucky Number 9: Journey of a Rubber Tapper's Daughter

FREE March 12 - 16!


Read how Rina overcame poverty, debilitating health issues, many other dramatic life challenges and how her ultimate triumph over such adversity has resulted in a deep desire to give back to the world.

Buy Now!




Tony Molina's South Texas Drag

FREE March 12 - March 14!

Take a trip through the South Texas terrain through the eyes of drug runner!


Buy Now!

Monday, March 13, 2017

Story Merchant Books: Sell Your Story to Hollywood FREE Until March 16th!!

Dealing with Hollywood High Concept and more! "#1 Writer's Pocket Guide to The Business of Show Business"!



purchase on Amazon.com


Through the expanding influence of the Internet and the corporatization of both publishing and entertainment, the process of getting your book to the big screen has gotten more complicated, more eccentric, and more exciting.

This little book aims to help you figure out how to get your story told on big screens or small. It’s not going to give you rules and regulations, because they simply don’t exist today. Any rule that could be promulgated has and will be broken. What this book offers instead is nearly thirty years of observation of how things happen in show business, the business of entertainment (better known around the world as Hollywood). Dr. Ken Atchity’s Hollywood experience ranges from writing to managing writers to producing their movies for television and theaters. He’s seen the Hollywood story market from nearly every angle, including legal and business affairs.

Dolphin Boy Fundraiser Screening March 16th to Benefit Lashon Academy


Please Join a Special Screening of  Yonaton Nir and Dani Menkin​'s  Dolphin Boy for Larger Than Life, supporting Israeli kids with cancer and Lashon Academy, The first Hebrew Charter School in the valley.

RSVP Here