Write Once, Then Link

If I’ve got something to say, I write it and then link to that post: Write Once, Then Link.

Follow this link if you want to read more about the thinking behind these posts. If you’re digging around and looking for the topics I’ve covered, you’ll find every page is categorized and tagged with either or both person tags and content tags.

If you’re unsure how this tagging can help you, then read this article.

last updated: 9 February 2019

With his latest book, The Fox, Frederick Forsyth jumps into the world of offensive cyber war. But is the book worth a read?

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Category: books, tv, and movies
People: Frederick Forsyth  
Tags: The Fox  

...continue reading: The Fox by Frederick Forsyth

last updated: 31 January 2019

Many authors approach working with editors from the wrong direction looking to the downsides and not to the benefits that a healthy partnership can bring. Perhaps I can suggest a different way to approach working with an editor.

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Category: writing
Tags: editor  

...continue reading: Working with an Editor

last updated: 27 January 2019

Devil in a Blue Dress was the first novel by Walter Mosley and features Easy Rawlins, an African American World War II veteran. It is a noir masterpiece pulling together threads of race, friendship and betrayal, and political corruption in the context of post-war America.

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...continue reading: Devil in a Blue Dress by Walter Mosley

last updated: 26 January 2019

Walter Mosley’s novel Devil in a Blue Dress is a noir masterpiece pulling together threads of race, friendship and betrayal, and political corruption in the context of post-war America. Read the book, then watch the movie—and watch the movie for the electric portrayal of Mouse by Don Cheadle.

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...continue reading: Devil in a Blue Dress: the movie

last updated: 24 January 2019

Macbeth is one of William Shakespeare’s best known plays. Traditionally, it is viewed as a tragedy, but it could be viewed as a crime story and the interrogated with five questions.

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Category: story
People: Macbeth   William Shakespeare  
Tags: five questions  

...continue reading: Five Questions: Macbeth

last updated: 22 January 2019

Devil in a Blue Dress by Walter Mosley introduces Easy Rawlins, an African American World War II veteran who has just lost his job and needs money to pay his mortgage. By asking five questions we can get to the heart of the story.

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Category: story
People: Walter Mosley   Easy Rawlins  
Tags: Devil in a Blue Dress   five questions  

...continue reading: Five Questions: Devil in a Blue Dress

last updated: 10 January 2019

I’m an author which means I spend much of my day editing digital files. As I write, in practice what I’m doing is committing my thoughts to digital files. If my files get lost or damaged, then my work is lost, and so over time I’ve adopted processes to minimize the risk of loss. In developing these processes, my aim has been not simply to be able to recover lost work, but to also ensure I can recover that work without any delay so I can keep working without pause. This is my process.

Filed under

Category: tools
Tags: File History   Time Machine   Backblaze   Crashplan   Dropbox   OneDrive  

...continue reading: Back Up Process

last updated: 7 January 2019

The Day of the Jackal by Frederick Forsyth was published in 1971. The subsequent movie based on the novel was released in 1973. In the (nearly) fifty years since these releases many have tried to emulate both, but few have bettered the originals. If you haven’t read the book or seen the movie, you should rectify that immediately. And if you have read/watched, you’ll understand why both are worth revisiting.

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...continue reading: The Day of the Jackal

last updated: 5 January 2019

The Day of the Jackal was the first novel by Frederick Forsyth. The story was subsequently adapted as a film of the same name. Both are still very readable/watchable, in large part, because of the central premise on which the story is built.

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Category: story
People: Frederick Forsyth   Claude Lebel  
Tags: The Day of the Jackal   five questions  

...continue reading: Five Questions: The Day of the Jackal

last updated: 3 December 2018

Behind every book, and woven into every story, is a mix of ideas and influences. If you want to know more about the story behind the story in my books—the ideas, the influences, the characters, the real world events—then start here.

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Category: background

...continue reading: Behind Every Story

last updated: 1 December 2018

Many people have never heard of the singer-songwriter John Martyn. Let me give you a quick introduction.

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Category: music
People: John Martyn  
Tags: May You Never   Sweet Little Mystery  

...continue reading: John Martyn

last updated: 21 November 2018

I outline my stories before I begin writing and as part of that process I outline each scene. I have a simple template to put some structure around my thoughts for each scene and to ensure I hit the key points. This note includes my starting point template for scene outlining.

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Category: story
Tags: outline   scene  

...continue reading: Scene Outline: Starting Point

last updated: 21 November 2018

As an author, I outline my stories before I begin writing. When I begin to outline, it helps to have a template to put some structure around my thoughts and to work as a framework where I can assess and understand the ideas I’m pushing around. This note includes my starting point template for outlining a book.

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Category: story
Tags: outline  

...continue reading: Story Outline: Starting Point

last updated: 21 November 2018

There is much to commend the three act structure, but it can also be too unspecific, and for this reason, I like to break the acts down into smaller more manageable chunks when I think about writing stories.

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Category: story
Tags: three act structure   inciting incident  

...continue reading: Three Act Structure

last updated: 20 November 2018

Categories and tags are applied to Write Once, Then Link posts to classify the content. Here’s an explanation of how categories and tags have been implemented on this site and how they can help you find what you’re looking for.

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Category: writing
Tags: tagging   housekeeping  

...continue reading: Categories and Tags: an Explanation

last updated: 18 November 2018

For the reader, the first scene is literally the first thing they will read after they have committed to trying a book. For an author, this is the point where they have to start delivering on the promise—they need to deliver on the expectations that led the reader to decide that this book would be the next book they read.

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Category: story
People: Lee Child   Jack Reacher  
Tags: first scene   The Midnight Line  

...continue reading: First Scene to Hook the Reader

last updated: 17 November 2018

Many authors use word count as a measure of how much work they have completed. While there are benefits to this approach, focusing at the word count loses sight of the work that is necessary to get the words down. A better approach may be to use the Pomodoro technique and count Pomodoros. Read why this is an approach you should adopt.

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Category: writing
Tags: time management   Pomodoro technique   timer  

...continue reading: Written Work: Improving the Quantity and the Quality

last updated: 8 November 2018

Killing Eve is the best thing I’ve seen on TV for a while. Let me try and encourage you to watch.

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...continue reading: Killing Eve

last updated: 7 November 2018

The maxim never do today what you can put off until tomorrow probably sounds like the ultimate justification for laziness. In truth, it’s one of the best ways to focus and improve productivity.

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Category: writing
Tags: time management   priorities  

...continue reading: Never Do Today What You Can Put Off Until Tomorrow

last updated: 25 October 2018

A scene is the basic unit of a story. It is a self-contained element of a story that can exist on its own and is the minimum viable self-contained unit of a story. A novel is—in essence—a series of scenes.

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Category: story
Tags: scene  

...continue reading: Scene Basics