Creativity / ideation / writing

Writing Wednesday: Freeing My Mind

The last couple of months have been tough and tedious, but I finally have Detective Jimmy Delaney #5 & #6 ‘put to bed’, as it were. I decided to work on them together, thinking that I would do a better job (and have an easier time maintaining consistency) if I didn’t let other stories and ideas get in the way. I think it was a success – at least for Jimmy.

Now it’s time to leave this universe and do other things, but I’m coming up empty. It’s not that I can’t come up with a new story idea – I have half a dozen of them waiting in the wings, but they’re NOT Jimmy Delaney. It’s a s though grounding myself in the DJD universe has ground me into a rut, and I need to dig myself out.

When I was an actor, characters I was playing would bleed into my real life – I’d have to expel them once a show was done. Some left more easily than others (I’m not certain that The Zoo Story’s Jerry ever did), but the surest way to get rid of the influence of one was to bring in another to REPLACE them. Another “show must go on” would take care of it.

Of course, that would involve weeks of getting into the next character, reinforced by a rehearsal schedule, a script, and the rest of that play’s universe. But as a writer, I’m counting on an isolated, built from scratch creation to supplant one that already exists.

How do I free myself from DJD?

  1. Don’t even look at any of my DJD stories (I need to put some distance between myself and that universe.)
  2. Stay away from detective shows in general – particularly Rockford, Magnum, and Spade, but it’s best to completely avoid that genre.
  3. Go places I haven’t been before – short or long distance doesn’t matter.
  4. Immerse myself in some totally non-DJD television – Everybody Loves Raymond, or Smithsonian, or The History Channel.
  5. Run.
  6. Stop making excuses – pick one of my ideas and write (that’s right – JUST DO IT!)

Anyone else out there have any ideas? I could use a hand here.

Just saying…


CloseEnoughCoverThis week’s Smashword’s coupon is for “Close Enough”:

Could a Messier object be any messier? A government server glitch leaves Max Keppler no time to react to the comet barreling toward his and Rebecca’s asteroid claim. See Max deal with an uppity A.I., an unhelpful helpdesk, and a comet named Napoleon as he works to minimize the impact of this sudden impact on their already shaky relationship.

“Close Enough” was shortened from “close enough for government work.” It’s bad enough here on Earth; how badly could a distant, non-responsive agency botch things over planetary distances, and what kind of NORMAL people might put themselves in a position to depend on that agency?

Use coupon code ZP24S to get 67% off the cover price at Smashwords (that’s only 99-cents – such a deal!) – it’s good until July 23rd. Here’s the link:

“Close Enough” is also available in the collection – And Yet Still Even More Things I Could Get OUT OF MY MIND.


Collection7eBookCoverI’m participating in Smashwords’ site-wide Summer/Winter Sale promotion – for the month of July, all of my collections are 50%-off with a coupon (the coupons is listed on the individual page for each book – it’s SSW50 in case you have trouble finding it.) The coupon applies to my seven OUT OF MY MIND collections, plus my Herc Tom Collection Cats of War I and the Detective Jimmy Delaney collection Broken Down.

All can be found on my Smashwords author page (listed below), or you can find the individual links on yesterday’s Selling Saturday posting by clicking HERE.


Only 9 days until my next release, and I STILL don’t know what it is…


William Mangieri’s writing, including his latest Publication “Mating Rituals”, can be found in many places, including:



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