Writing Tips: Muddle in the Middle

dazzling readers
Photo by Mike Enerio on Unsplash

Whenever you start a new nonfiction writing project, it can be a thrilling time. You’ve come up with the most incredible idea and you envision the marvelous story you’re about to tell, full of dazzling insights, with an ending that will cause readers to become breathless with amazement, dizzy with excitement, in complete and utter awe of your talent!

You may know exactly which anecdote, statistic or quote will create the best beginning to draw in readers, and you may also know the final point that needs to be made. But, what about the middle?


Author Interview: The Strange Files of Fremont Jones

Deep From the Archives

This is an author interview that I did in 1996.

The Strange Files of Fremont Jones by Dianne Day

After Dianne Day’s youngest son started college, she awoke one fine Saturday morning and realized, “Hey, I can do whatever I want today, as long as it doesn’t cost too much.”

“And, that was when I knew that i wanted to write a whole novel more than anything else in the world,” Day said. “So, I bought an electronic typewriter from Seas on the never-never plan, and I wrote one. That experienced hooked me and I’ve never stopped writing since.”

author interview

Author Interview: The Orchard

Deep From the Archives

This is an author interview that I did in 1996. Seriously! In fact, it’s the first of many that I’m bringing up from the deep archives of my work.

author interview: The Orchard

The Orchard by Adele Crockett Robertson

While reading The Orchard, you can almost breathe in the sweet, fruity scent of apples. Tipping your head slightly to one side, you might hear the distant buzzing of bees dripping rich honey into elaborate combs.

Adele Crockett Robertson writes as she must have once farmed apples. Gently, but with a purposeful hand; practical, yet ever observant of the poetic beauty of life. Her clear, lyrical phrasing draws you completely into her world of 1932-1934: the weather harsh, the living rough, the people strong.

Nonfiction Writing Advice

Writing Traits: Are You a Writer?

freelance writer
FabJob Guide to Become a Freelance Writer

Before We Get Started

Here are some posts from my site that can help with freelance writing:

Writing a Nonfiction Book: Keeping it Real

Nonfiction Writing: Toss Out a Great Opener

How to Write a Book Proposal: Nonfiction Example

Research, Write and Review: The Biography

What is Content Creation?

Writing Traits to Consider

Give yourself one point for each of these writing traits that sound like you. You:

Film Review

Film Review: Car Wash

Car Wash movie
Photo by Adrian Dascal on Unsplash

Encyclopedia Entry

Note: I had written this film review for an encyclopedia and then the project itself got cancelled. So, I decided to upload it to my site.

Car Wash is a 1976 Universal Studios film produced by Art Linson and Gary Stromberg, directed by Michael Schultz and written by Joel Schumacher. This 97-minute musical comedy contains elements of drama and romance, with at least one reviewer calling it reminiscent of 1930s theater. This blaxploitation film, set in the Dee-Luxe Car Wash located in Los Angeles, California, covers just one day of interactions among two dozen-plus multi-racial characters, including car wash staff, their customers, people working at nearby businesses and more. Throughout the movie, employees listen to disco music from KGYS, dancing as they work, with news breaks synchronizing with car wash events in this episodic-style film.

Nonfiction Writing Advice

Nonfiction Writing Advice: Toss Out a Great Opener

boomerang book

Here is some nonfiction writing advice that I’d created years ago.

To unravel the twisting, turning history (of the boomerang), you’d have to travel back in time. You’d slip back to an age before there were airplanes, before there were cars, before the signing of the Declaration of Independence. You’d travel to a place where America wasn’t yet known, to a time long before William the Conqueror subdued England in 1066. You wouldn’t even recognize the world you’d enter, the primitive, murky horizons of ancient man.”

Film Review

Guest Film Review: Hero and Villain – The Story of Martin Luther

Film Review by Ryan Sagert

film review: Martin Luther
Library of Congress: No Known Restrictions

The story of the Reformation was one of faith, politics and philosophical change, which took place in the mid-16th century in what was then and is today Germany. At its most basic, the Reformation was a movement, headed by Martin Luther to challenge the authority of the Catholic Church, then the political and religious head of Europe, for its right to sell indulgences, which was the forgiveness of sins for fiscal profit. On a historical level, the Reformation marked the end of blind faith and ushered in the age of reason. 

Nonfiction Writing Advice

Writing a Non-Fiction Book: Keeping It Real

writing a book
Photo by Jaredd Craig on Unsplash

I want to write a book” or “I have a book idea.”

When people find out that I’m an author, that’s often what they say to me – and, I reply, “That’s great! The world needs more wonderful books.” (And, it’s true. There can never be enough wonderful books!)

A follow up question that I sometimes get asked is, “Do you think I have the talent to write a book?”


Author Interview: Peg Cochran

book from author interviewee

From the Archives

Note: This author interview was originally published in 2013 on another site that is no longer live.

The combination of talent and persistence can’t be beat. To witness the personification of these two personality traits, you need look no further than Peg Cochran, author of the Gourmet De-Lite mystery series, featuring Gigi Fitzgerald, as well as the author of other cozy mysteries (more about those throughout the interview!).

When Peg was seven, she discovered a series that has delighted young readers for generations, featuring the daring sleuth Nancy Drew. From that point on, Peg knew that, when she grew up, she would write mysteries.