Archive | April, 2009

I’m A Dummy

I’ve been pretty quiet lately on the blog, for reasons that I can now reveal.

A few months ago, I began working on a proposal for a book titled WRITING FICTION FOR DUMMIES. I have a co-author, Peter Economy, who has done a number of books in the famous Dummies series, and we have been working from the get-go with an acquisition editor at the publisher. The proposal was accepted several weeks ago, and we’ve been working through those pesky contract details ever since.

As of yesterday, I signed the contract on the book. I’m taking it in to FedEx it to the publisher in a few minutes. And I’m busy writing chapters now.

I’ll post more information as we get closer to publication date. Currently, we’re scheduled to launch the book in November, 2009, right in time for National Novel Writing Month.

So now you know why I’ve been so quiet. I want this book to be the best it can possibly be, so I’ve been working extremely hard on it. Once we get past our first milestone date, I’ll be better calibrated on how much time and effort it takes to reach milestones, and I hope to get a bit more regular in my blogging after that.

In the meantime, I’m celebrating the fact that . . . I’m a Dummy.

Sam The Plumber Is An Agent

I was gone for almost a week to a writing conference at Mount Hermon (near Santa Cruz, California). I’m home now and almost caught up on all the email, bills, and other untidy parts of Real Life.

I had hoped to blog before I left about my latest Sam The Plumber column. Sam has decided to become an agent, and naturally, he thinks that I should be his client, despite the fact that I already have one. You can read about Sam’s antics here.

The April issue of my Advanced Fiction Writing E-zine was due on Tuesday, April 7, which was the night I got back. It quickly became clear to me that I was going to miss that deadline. It’s just too much fun at a writing conference to be working on actual writing. The April issue will therefore come out one week later, on April 14. That should be just in time for you to enjoy as you wrap up those pesky taxes (if you live in a place where taxes are due April 15.)

I really enjoyed the conference. Here is a shot of my buddy John Olson and me at the autograph party on Monday night. I am the cool and sensible guy on the left. I don’t know what John is grinning about. Probably he’s just happy that he has four books to sign and I have none. Thanks to Tosca Lee for shooting us on her iPhone.
Randy Ingermanson teams up with his coauthor John Olson for a booksigning at the Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference.

What Are You Reading?

The last couple of weeks have been frenetic. I have a couple of projects that have been consuming all my free time. One of them is a book deal which is in the final stages of negotiation–I’ll announce details here when it’s finalized. The other is going to be a nice surprise for everyone, but I can’t say what it is just yet.

I’m leaving tomorrow for a writing conference, but thought I’d toss out this question: What are you reading lately?

I’ve just finished reading THE SHACK, by William P. Young. It’s been riding high on the bestseller lists for months, and I finally decided to read it. I had been holding off because I had heard a couple of things about it that gave me pause. First, I had heard that the level of writing craft is not that good. Second, I had heard that some people have “theological qualms” with the book.

I have now read the book and I was blown away by the story. Writing fiction is about giving your reader a powerful emotional experience. THE SHACK delivers that in spades. It is also one of those books that may well affect you for the rest of your life. I think it’s fair to say that it will do that for me. It has already made a very significant difference in my life. A good story can do that.

As for craft, I’d say that THE SHACK is not going to win any awards from writing teachers who love rules. I am not much bothered by that. The purpose of those pesky rules is to guide the author in giving the reader a powerful emotional experience. Period. THE SHACK delivers. To heck with the rules.

As for those pesky “theological qualms,” I can see where some people might have issues. Truth to tell, I have never, ever read a book that I agreed with 100%. There is probably nobody alive I would agree with 100%. I saw some things in THE SHACK that I didn’t agree with. This had nothing to do with the impact the story had on me.

The two storylines that have delivered the goods to me most powerfully in this decade are:
1) The Harry Potter series

All of which reminds me that my friend Doug Bolton has ten autographed copies of THE SHACK that he is giving away on his web site to anyone who signs up for his free e-newsletter. I met Doug last summer at a writing conference. He has a web site on dealing with depression and is running this promotion until April 15 (Tax Day, which drives depression for a lot of us).

So if you want to be entered in Doug’s drawing for an autographed copy of THE SHACK, take a look at his web site at

OK, I need to go get packed to fly out tomorrow. Leave a comment and tell us what you’re reading!

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