Writers Horoscope August 31: Reach out to your readers.

No matter the audience size, it’s a good idea to open up, to gauge your readership.

After all, you’re a wordsmith. A master of your message.

And your readers’ reactions? Wellll, it’s anybody’s guess.

gratisography with callout one guy sleeping one guy stressed how readers react

With that in mind…why am I doing this writer’s horoscope [WH]?

Not necessarily in order of importance:

1. This is a project that will keep my head in the writing game. I like to stay involved in the process and if I have to think daily about even one aspect of it, well, that’s helpful.

2. I’m writing for me. I’m facing up to a self-issued challenge and since I’m not a great finisher up to now, I want to see if I can finish a year of it. [I can hear the groans from the folks who read the WH and really, you’ve been great, but I’m guessing you might roll your eyes at the repetition of some of the topics/themes I explore, which brings me to…

3. I’m thinking that if certain themes keep rearing their ugly heads, well, that’s telling me something–namely, they are issues that I consider important, if for no other writer than myself.

4. Maybe a different reader/fellow writer happens upon [is force-fed] my blog, say, a month from now. They’ve missed all my other gems [just humor me on this] about sticking your neck out, but the one on their screen might just hit home.

5. Each time I click ‘Publish’, I’ve given resistance a small-scale whack on the side of the head and believe me, resistance deserves it.

6. I really do ascribe to Austin Kleon’s ‘Show Your Work’ principles two and three ‘Think Process, Not Product’ and ‘Share something small every day.’. It’s giving a peek behind the curtain because frankly, the WH is obviously a work in progress. I mean, really, depending on the day, is it really a horoscope?

7. Maybe some of those dominant themes will co-opt themselves into a different form later on.

8. It’s fun to look for the photos that cast a ‘tongue-in-cheek’ eye at the various themes.  [I’m sorry, but when the absurdity of that bizarre three-body-part-in-one phrasing popped in my head, I just had to go with it. Can you tell this is first-and-a-half draft material?]

9. Short pieces like this W.H. work for my limited attention span. In fact, this 450-word post is downright exhausting. [I can only imagine what an ordeal it is for anybody who has read this far.]

Okay, that’s nine reasons, with probably a couple more hovering out there.

So, feel free to keep reading and when you come upon repeated topics, just reassure yourself:   A] “it’s not you, it’s me.” [Thank you, George Costanza.] It’s my experiment. B] My own denseness requires plenty of repetition.


photo courtesy of Gratisography


Writers Horoscope August 30: Keep an even keel.

Writing has its low points.

gratisography lows of writing lady bathrobe wine bottles

And even the highs of writing can be wearing, as the descent isn’t always a joy.

So, yes, savor the good stuff, don’t linger too long on the bad stuff, and keep typing. Even if you have to stray off topic, props to you for gangster-slapping resistance [see August 28].

Photo courtesy of:  http://gratisography.com/


Writer Horoscope August 29: It’s ‘Try a new genre!’ day.


How about sci-fi?

And if you have to immerse yourself in the new mindset, so be it.

gratisography-robotsuit colendar on head

Photo courtesy of:  http://gratisography.com/


Writers Horoscope August 25 : Today, you’ll have your eyes on a different prize.



© Tim Haag

And you will pay for it.

Three pounds later, 2000 words in arrears, you will resolve to turn it around tomorrow.

gratisography-faux superhero ready to take on the day determination

You will need twice the willpower to atone for your sins–a day of watercress/kale smoothies and 4000 words [you might as well riff on your day of decadence].

But hey, it was fun while it lasted, right?


Photo courtesy of http://gratisography.com/

Writers Horoscope August 24: Rejection? Make it work for you.

Your friend woke up to three ‘Thanks, but no thanks.’ emails last Friday.

gratisography-head-in drainpipe

A pity.

You could be next.

You could give up. Or you could…

  • unleash your trusty PaperMate… [Adding sound effects is perfectly acceptable.]
  • scrawl out an angry, primed-for-the-trashcan “You don’t know what you’re missing!” tirade…
  • move on with your novel about a thoughtless, talentless book editor who encounters a gauntlet of starving homicidal writers.

Your choice.

Writers Horoscope August 23 : Run your own race. Find your own pace.**

gratisography lying in threshed field

Sure, others will push past you and achieve more notable success.

Look at it this way [yes, it’s Chapter Umpteen in ‘find the positives’.]: You may never have to confront that damnable ‘impostor syndrome’ that creeps up on some folks. And if you keep lip-diddling your way through your one book, you won’t face that fearsome ‘sophomore slump’.


** Yes, sentence 2 was redundant, but I fell victim to the rhyme. So sue me.

Photo courtesy of http://gratisography.com/

Writers Horoscope August 22: The work of others calls your name. Stay original.

Go ahead…

bellingham statue 1

Take a quick peek.

bellingham statue up closer

Not bad, huh…

It might be just what you need to freshen up that lifeless essay on your daily struggles.

Tsk, tsk, tsk…stealing from an inanimate object.

Shame on you.


Writers Horoscope August 21: Prepare to be exploited.

Your desperation attracts jackals.


You wanted an editor for your easy chapter book. First quote to come in: $1500.
Say what?
Exhibit patience. Not your strong suit.
Lower quotes are on the way.
Time for you to be the exploiter.**


**Even if you follow up on a $500 offer, and don’t like the results, find another editor with a reasonable rate. Result: Detailed feedback from two editors and you’re still out hundreds less than if you’d jumped at that first profiteer.



Writer Horoscope August 20: Today, avoid being your own worst enemy.

gratisography-donut holes on fingers keyboarding difficult obstacles in own way

You have enough demons undermining your progress. 

Free up those fingers and finish that next chapter.

Photo courtesy of:  http://gratisography.com/


Writers Horoscope August 19: Today, break from your daily routine.

You don’t always have to write first thing in the morning.

Seek adventure that might spur a whole new plot, a new series of blog posts, even a misdemeanor on your up-to-now unsullied criminal record.

Be open to possibility.

bunny on boardwalk