Friday, December 20, 2013

We have moved!!!

Thank you for visiting my site. WE HAVE MOVED to our own home and are located at

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I look forward to seeing you there.

Orlando Sanchez

Thursday, November 21, 2013

The Discipline of writing.

Here it is day 21 and I'm 34k in to my month of writing. If there is one thing I want to say about Nano, its this. You want to hit 50k?  You need to have discipline. I also have a new found respect for writers that can produce more than one book a year. Writing is work. After the muse has left town, and inspiration is a dim memory, that's when discipline comes in. It sidles up to you paddle in hand and glares. Then it whispers: "What now? Are you going to dream your way to the end of the book? Maybe if you wish real hard it will write itself!"

Discipline is what it takes to put pen to paper or your fingers to the keys. not when you feel like it, because as I have discovered there will be times when you most certainly DO NOT FEEL LIKE IT. 

The important thing is that writing is not about feelings. Writing, whether it is a novel, screenplay, short story, blog or anything else you choose to do is not about your feelings. Its not about starting the project. Writers have great ideas about things we can start. Writing is about FINISHING. Its about writing until it surpasses good and becomes great. Its about getting the first, second, third, and how ever many you need drafts done. Then when you finish that its about editing and polish. Its about having relationships in the world with people who love to read, who may want to read your work. Its about going into this with both eyes open. DON'T BELIEVE THE HYPE. It's never easy but it is always worth it.

I have 16k left to get to in 9 days, even though the story I'm writing is considerably longer than 50k. I will arrive at 50k in few days. I'm smiling as I write this because that in itself is an accomplishment. It is only the beginning. Remember it takes discipline.

writers write

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Take care of yourself

I don't have many vices. Reading is one of my primary addictions (thank you kindle!) The other is that I do enjoy one cup of coffee every morning. Occasionally I will even splurge and hit the green mermaid place and pay close to five dollars for what I could get for $1.50. I used to do that often, not so much now since I have started writing at home in the man cave.
I write this because many times we think as writers that we need to deprive ourselves of things in order to be good writers. I disagree. I think the more we take care of ourselves the better our writing. This doesn't mean we spend all day at a spa ( although that sounds like a great idea), but it does mean that every so often we indulge in those things we enjoy. I don't subscribe to the tortured artist ideal, I think its pointless. Besides life has enough unpleasantness in it ( just turn on the news if you're unsure of what I mean) I don't need to add more to it.

Taking care of yourself also means taking care of your body. I exercise regularly and watch what I eat. The motivation for this is that I want to be around to torture my own children when they have kids. I will certainly be the grandfather that spoils kids, undermines their parents, gets them the gifts that are not allowed and gives them more money than they will ever get on  an allowance. Torturing my kids will be hard work, that requires that I be healthy and fit.

My other motivation in regards to writing is a bit more mundane. I cant write well if I feel horrible. Lack of sleep, poor eating, no exercise, and abusing my body harms me and my writing.
This lesson has really hit home this month with Nano going full swing (20k and going strong). I have realized that I need to pace myself. That writing 10k in one day, while a worthwhile goal is difficult with a house full of kids, a business to run and a body to take care of. Yesterday I managed 4k because I took Sunday off to relax and it felt great.
It all comes down to choice. Taking care of yourself should be a priority, no matter what you do.

writers write

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Help my brain is on FIRE!!!

Its day 6. I'm 11k in and frankly my brain is smoldering. Nanowrimo is, for those of us who take a more relaxed approach, like writing at 100 mph. With no brakes. Oh and look there's a turn coming up.

Actually its a great experience so far. The story which I outlined loosely in October, but has been harassing me since early September, is flowing. Granted this is a zero draft because I'm just writing  and not giving much thought to finer details. I'm just getting the story on the page. I'll pull out the scythe on the next pass and the pass after that.

Also this is the first time I'm taking on typing the book as I write. I usually write my books longhand, yes its a long process-hence the smoldering  brain. I wanted to attempt typing this time for several reasons. I wanted to hone the typing skills and I wanted a way to keep an accurate track of word count which is not easily done longhand.

At this rate I have been doing about 2k a day for the last 5 days. I find if I do my writing early in the day it works. Also late at night seems to be a good time, when the little ones are in bed. Middle of the day, not so much. Too distracted with other things pulling ion my time.

Will keep you posted.

writers write

Monday, November 4, 2013

NaNoWriMo-Lets get it done!

This year I'm participating in NaNoWriMo. I did this roller-coaster a few years ago and while I didn't complete the 50k word goal, the project I did work on became the basis of the book I finally published. After grabbing control of this blog again-dont ask how that went, I still have the scars. I decided to share with you how Im doing in my endeavors to write 2000 words a day.

At first I thought 2k? No problem. Then I realized I had a life, a wife to keep happy or at least not irate, a tribe of kids, a school to run, two weekly blogs, a book in beta reader stage which will come back needing rewriting, and other projects to write. What the hell was I thinking?

So for your reading pleasure here is the chapter of Sepia Blue-Origins, enjoy! This is a zero draft so it rough but I wanted to share it with all of you.

Her body slammed into the wall cracking brick and ribs. The impact forced the breath from her body in a violent gasp.  Heat flushed her body the next moment as she felt her ink flare, muting the pain, knitting bone and tissue. The meaty hand around her neck began to squeeze.  Part of her brain informs her that this is a very bad situation, she ignores it. Always stating the obvious-she thought as her vision begins to tunnel in. Taking a moment to orient herself, she looks up the arm of the mountain that just tried to crush her into a wall. He bares his teeth in what she can only imagine is a smile. Brutes are not known for their intelligence.  They were big, strong, fast, and almost impossible to kill. She was glad there was only one.

“I have a clear shot.” said the voice over her com link.
“No! Cade I got this.” She planted her feet against the wall and pushed, forcing the Brute to step back and loosening his grip for a second. A second is all she needs as she reaches up and pulls back on his hand and breaking the thumb, compromising the stranglehold around her neck. It was so sudden the pain doesn't register for a moment. She hears Cade, cursing under his breath.

“Sepia let me end him, he didn't even feel that, the bastard.”  She crouches under the hay-maker that would have removed her head from her body had it connected.  Realizing that Cade is right-the Brute isn't fazed by a broken finger, she’s not surprised.
“I need information Cade; I can’t get it if it’s dead.
“Better it than you.”
“No killing.”  

She rolls behind the Brute as it delivers a stomp that crushes the wall behind her. This was turning into a bad night. She wanted to take this thing down without killing it, and she wasn’t seeing a way to do it. She turned to the Brute as it was advancing.
“If you tell me why you are so far from home I promise not to kill you.” she said.
“Hunter dies tonight.” The Brute’s voice was a rasp. The words like the grinding of two boulders, all jagged edges and pain.
“What the fu-“Cade was mid-sentence when the head shot took down the Brute. There was a look of shock mixed with surprise on the Brute’s face.  It took one more step before crashing to the ground.

“Goddamn it Cade, I told you no killing.” She rolled the Brute over to check the body, finding nothing of importance. What was it doing so far downtown? Who had sent it? Did it really speak to her? Could the Unholy be intelligent? So many questions and no answers.
“That wasn’t me Sepia, and since when did they learn to speak? I’ve never heard one of them speak, ever.” She turned, scanning the rooftops as she answered.
“Me either, I didn’t even think they had language. He was clear on the message though. Someone wants me dead.” said Sepia.
“If it wasn’t you, then someone is piggybacking us.” She knew Cade well enough to know he would never kill unless she was in real danger. No this was someone else. Someone was trying to make a point.
“Let’s see how good they are Cade.”
“I’m already moving.”
“Meet you there.

 She had a rough idea of where the shooter would set up judging from the trajectory of the shot.  She ran towards the building she thought the sniper had used. The streets in lower New York were a labyrinth, thanks to the English. She reached the rooftop at the same time as Cade scaled over the edge.

“Whoever they were, they’re good. That’s easily a four hundred yard shot.” said Cade as he paced around the roof taking in vantage points.
“Good, but not as good as you. How many gunners can make that shot you think?” Sepia was looking over the edge of the roof trying to gauge how high up they were.
“We’re about forty feet up. How many? All of them. At least all the ones I know.” Cade was crouched over the edge.
“He took the shot from here, not bad. Far enough to be difficult close enough to hide.”
“This smells Cade, it smells wrong.”
“If you had let me take my shot-“She glared at him.
“Sepia you can’t keep doing this, these principles or ideals or whatever you want to call them are going to get you killed. You have to eliminate them; it’s the only way you get to go home at the end of your tour. You know I’m right.”
“No Cade, all life is sacred even unholy life.” she said as she jumped off the side of the building onto the street below. 

The deserted street swallowed her footsteps as she walked away.You are in the wrong line of work little girl, and it’s going to get you and me killed one day. Cade thought as scaled the metal railing of the fire escape, down to the street continuing their patrol.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

This is a guest post-deal with it

I'm a hunter. Its what I do. When you go to bed at night, comfortable in your homes behind your walls and self imposed deceptions I'm on the streets. My name is, hell does it even matter? Fine. My name is Sepia Blue and no its not my given name, I don't even know what that is. Enough with the name.

Why am I here hijacking this blog? I'm tired of being in his head.  I decided it was time you heard my voice. For some time now I have been suggesting to him to get my story down. I whisper to him when he is sleeping or when he is doing some of his other writing.  Writing. Not. About. Me.  I don't do coy well. I am at the point where I want to shove my blade between his ribs, gently of course. Just to get his attention.

So you want to know what I hunt? I hunt nightmares. I hunt things that would make you soil yourself, crawl into the fetal position and wish you had never been born. I face them with Cade my partner-when he isn't being a pain in my ass.  Most of the time I face them alone. There is an order, a balance in my city-New York. Hunters maintain that balance. When that balance is threatened, say some nasty creature wants to make entrees out of you, my bosses call me. I cancel the menu.

I'm not like you-what would absolutely kill you, would probably kill me. Its a big difference, trust me. No I'm not immortal-what is this a comic book? However I do have the skill and the weapons that level the playing field. My sword, Perdition is what I like to call a blade of evil. Cue in the cackling. Every time I use it, I lose a part of myself - its a raw deal, I cope by not drawing it unless I have to. I'm also covered in ink, every Hunter is. It gives us strength and protects us. Don't ask me how- some ancient rite, special ink, some other things I didn't get. Bottom line is that I look like a yakuza's wet dream, covered neck to ankle in designs. Hey they keep me alive while I do my job so its a fair trade-off.

So why am I here? Two reasons. First I'm putting him on notice. Write my story before I visit you in the most unpleasant way possible. I know how to be an unpleasant bitch, trust me. Second, he is going to need help. This is where you come in. Make sure you help him get this story done in a timely manner. I would hate to have to visit you as well. Actually you would hate it, I wouldn't mind at all.
The name of the book is Sepia Blue-Origins. Make it happen.


Monday, October 28, 2013

Revision and Self-Editing for Publication

There are literally hundreds if not thousands of books on writing. As a writer,  martial arts instructor, father of seven ( yes seven) I rarely have time to attend writing seminars. The last writing seminar I attended was two years ago held by the Open Center in New York City. It was a Right to Write seminar by Julia Cameron and it was excellent.

However as artists we must always seek to improve our craft. So I keep my skills sharp on my blogs and I am constantly in the middle of several books. Some are fiction ( pick up anything by Brandon Sanderson, my current read is the Mistborn series), some are on martial arts, and some are on writing.

Lately I have been reading Revision &Self Editing for Publication by James Scott Bell. You can get it on amazon here :

I initially purchased this as an e-book for my kindle and then realized this was the kind of book that becomes a reference, a resource, so I purchased it as a paperback as well. If you are a writer, or an aspiring writer, this is a book you need to have in your author arsenal. This is the book that will help you polish your manuscript.  It asks the right questions, the hard questions. It spurs you to action with the sole goal of making your book the best it can be. GET THIS BOOK. Read it,  Write in it. Read it again. Do the exercises. Then go and thank James Bell.

writers write