Friday, November 30, 2012


“Sooner or later, those who win are those who think they can.”
~ Richard Bach

It’s the LAST day of YESvember!

It’s the LAST day to kick some tail on that YESvember goal!

Finish strong –

I’m talking Super Friends STRONG.

Then focus ONLY on what you’ve accomplished this month.

I do not want to hear a pip or a peep about what you didn’t get done.

I’m serious.

If you’ve only written ONE word, revel in it.

Because, Dude, that is one heck of a word.

And if you’ve written MORE than ONE word –


You are a WINNER!

So go take a good look in the mirror…

YOU are what AWESOME looks like!

PROMPT: Celebrate! And, what the heck, invite Brad to the party –

“I love any and all situations where you celebrate creativity.”
~ Brad Paisley

Me too, Brad. Me too. ROCK…oops, I mean... COUNTRY ON!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Beef It Up, Baby!

The Cranium Crunch

Yes, I’ve posted about the absolute awesomeness of exercise before

However, there’s some new news you can use!

According to a recent study, exercise is a powerful way to ward off brain shrinkage.

Brain shrinkage is that nasty inconvenience that happens over time. Live long enough and you’re pretty much guaranteed to have a brain the size of a raisin rattling around between your ears.


Luckily, moving your butt tends to move your brain, too. And according to science, the daily workout does wonders for the frontal lobes.

Frontal lobes have a whole lot of something to do with judgment, memory, problem-solving, personality, and emotions. Last time I checked, you needed all of those factors to be a great creator – so, get off the couch.

Also, given that other studies have proven that exercise knocks out depression, it obviously prevents another kind of shrinkage as well – yeah, I’m talking about the kind you pay $100 bucks an hour for.

And here’s the best part – you can get the biggest bang for your exercise buck by using my brother’s block-busting workout.

Let me interject here that my little brother can slam down more words in a month than I do in a year. He really rocks it, and here’s the secret to his butt-kicking success –

Whenever his word output starts to slow, he jumps up from the keyboard and does 5 minutes of power-up pushups or cranium crunches. Then he gets back to the novel and SHAZAM – the words are flying onto the page once more.

I tried Barry’s Block Buster last weekend when I was pushing hard to meet a Monday deadline. Even though I changed it up a bit by employing a hula hoop and smartbells (yes, they’ve had a name change given the latest research), I can verify that the method really works.

So, deep-six the shrinkage and six-pack the abs today!

Not only will your writing be stunning, you’ll be turning heads, too.

“Hey, Babe,” they’ll say, “You’ve got a really nice…


PROMPT: Try Barry’s Block Buster during today’s writing session just to see what it does for you. Feel the power of a full-size brain!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Goodness Gracious, Great Balls o’ Bucks!

I’m sure you’ve already heard about it –

Unless, of course, you happen to live in a cave… or California.

Yeah, I’m talking about that gazillion dollar Powerball jackpot.

Okay, okay, I’m exaggerating – it’s worth a mere 500 million. Chump change, I know.

But I must admit that it has tempted even me.

I actually parted with TWO WHOLE DOLLARS for a chance at it.

Because, what the heck – two bucks is a small price to pay for a day of what ifs.

And what ifs do wonders for creative thinking, you know.

What if you had that kind of dough?

Did you know that you could give away a $100 bill every single day for the rest of your life, and yet… you’d barely touch the interest you’d be making off the money?

Can you imagine spreading that kind of giddy good fortune every twenty-four hours?

Alternatively, you could rake all the cash into a big pile and dive in à la Scrooge McDuck.

Ah, the possibilities are such delicious fun to ponder, aren’t they?

And yes, deep down inside, we all know that money won’t buy happiness.

But hey, we also want to check it out for ourselves…

just to be sure.

PROMPT: What would you do with that kind of cash? What would your story’s main character do? A windfall can make for an interesting plot twist. Is it a big time blessing or crushing curse? YOU get to decide.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Do You Believe in Magic?

About a month ago, a writer I know received an odd sort of email.
No, it wasn’t an enlargement ad or a prescription drug offer –

It was a job offer.
And the sender was apparently a BIG cheese from the BIG D…

That’s D as in Disney.

Her first thought was something like, “Boy howdy, what will those spammers think of next?”
I mean, really – the offer was just too amazing to be true.

It went something like this –
We want to fly you to L.A.!

We want to show you a movie!

We want you to turn that movie into a picture book!
And can you, like, have the draft to us in two weeks?

In exchange, we’ll give you fame and fortune… maybe even some mouse ears, too!
Boy howdy was right –
Because it wasn’t a spammer.
It really was a BIG cheese.
It really was the BIG D.

And just yesterday Barbara Jean Hicks sent off that picture book draft.

You might be wondering how such a thing could happen.

Well, back in 2007 Barbara wrote a book called The Secret Life of Walter Kitty (illustrator Dan Santat). Apparently, the BIG cheese LOVED it. It was a BIG L sort of love. So when this opportunity came up, she tracked Barb down like Muenster on a mission…
And they worked happily ever after!

Yep, Elbow Benders, it’s called the Magic Kingdom for a reason.

PROMPT: You could be next! So you’d better go all Eagle Scout and get prepared. Treat yourself to a movie and try the Barbara Jean Hicks test. Sure, James Bond might be a picture book challenge, but what the heck – I say go for it!


Monday, November 26, 2012


It is the last week of November, and you know what that means…
It’s the last week of our YESvember goals!

If you’re participating in NaNoWriMo or PiBoIdMo, it is time to finish strong.
No matter what…

And no matter what if.
As in –

What if I’ve fallen off a bit?
What if I’ve lost my way?

What if I’ve kind of… sort of… quit?
Get back on.

Take up the reins.
You’re headed for home.

And the race is only against yourself, you know.
So have a little fun.

And remember –
even if you only win by a nose…

You still WIN!

Ride and Write on!

PROMPT: Make a plan to finish strong this week. Trust me, it does a body good. YeeHAW!