This is the first time I have hosted Scott Morgan here on the blog and I can’t tell you why it took so long. Perhaps it was because of his busy schedule or perhaps when I first met him on Twitter, he was a little intimidating. Scott Morgan knows how to write as in he TEACHES it, breathes it and lives it.
All you have to do to understand what I mean, is visit his website at Write-Hook.com. He edits; proofreads; conducts webinars; speaks at lectures; and is a short story and creative writing manuals author. He currently has two books available on Amazon on the creative writing process: Character Development From The Inside Out and his just released How To Be A Whiny Beeyotch – 71 Writing Excuses Meet The Back Of My Hand.
I humbly accepted an ARC copy of How To Be A Whiny Beeyotch and left the following review for it on Amazon the other day:
“When I received “How To Be A Whiny Beeyotch – 71 Writing Excuses Meet The Back Of My Hand” I expected a book filled with words of wisdom with a healthy pinch of humor thrown in for the up and coming author. I’d attended a few of Scott Morgan’s writing webinars, so I already knew Scott Morgan knew what he was talking about when it came to what it took to write and write well. What I WASN’T EXPECTING when I read the book was to be inspired. As I got in to each excuse given, Scott Morgan delivers what you need to hear to push away the B.S., “get over yourself” and get down to the business of writing. There is humor along the way, trust me, but it is hidden within a serious book with serious answers to get around what keeps you from putting fingers to keyboard. When I got to Excuse #34, it was me through and through. Whether you are a new or seasoned author, Scott Morgan, I’m sure, will hit on an excuse you have used and call you out on it. So you’re here on Amazon instead of writing. Do yourself a favor, get this book, read it, digest it. It will energize you to begin or continue your own.”
And, as if it wasn’t enough to be in the middle of all this work, Scott Morgan has made the time to contribute to something near and dear to his heart – that of the plight of sheltered animals. He, along with three other well-known authors, are part of The Quillective Project and they have written a book filled with poetry entitled “Four Paws” that will be releasing February 24, 2013. ALL proceeds will go to Dog & Kitty City, the no-kill Humane Society’s Shelter of Dallas, Texas. I don’t want to get off track of the purpose of this blog to feature Scott Morgan but I strongly encourage you to visit The Quillective Project web page, learn about the project, hear Scott Morgan’s own words and mark your calendar to purchase the book. It’s a win-win for all. You get the book, and the animals receive love and care until they can find their forever home.
After I read Scott Morgan’s How To Be A Whiny Beeyotch – 71 Writing Excuses Meet The Back Of My Hand, I knew I wanted to know more so I asked Scott if he wouldn’t mind taking a few minutes of what little time he had on his hands to answer a few questions. I have really enjoyed reading those answers and hope you will, too.
1. How long did it take you to accumulate the many excuses you’ve heard in order to pen “How To Be A Whiny Beeyotch”?
Oh God, I’ve been listening to excuses my whole life. The funniest part is, most of the excuses in the book apply to so many more things than writing. So many people I’ve known complain they never get anywhere, but when you make suggestions, they just keep finding more excuses.
2. What’s your ten-year plan for Write-Hook?
I want my name to be synonymous with helping writers learn and to get over themselves. If I live long enough, there will be more books to help writers, more workshops and talks, and a line of home courses on different aspects of writing. I’ve found I’m an educator and quasi-motivator, so that’s the direction I’m going in.
3. You listed 71 of the most common excuses in “How To Be A Whiny Beeyotch” for not writing. List 5 of the most ridiculous excuses you’ve ever heard.
They’re all pretty ridiculous, but five of the ones that actually make my jaw drop are:
I can’t spell
My friends want to hang out too much
I’m too old
I can’t type very fast
I don’t want to sell out
4. One of the topics you touched on in the 71 Excuses was research. Did you have to do any with this book or is it all taken from personal experience?
Not much research for this one, no. I browsed a few websites for writing excuses just to remind myself of some of the junk I’ve heard, but for the most part it was just a matter of recalling the bullshit I’ve been hearing my whole writing life.
5. Tell me about a typical day in the working life of Scott Morgan. How do you handle your time management so well?
As a reporter you learn to prioritize on the fly. News reporting is like an emergency room, it’s a mix of first-come/first-served and “crap, this has to get done now or the whole world will explode.” I don’t know how much of it for me is conscious, but I do make a list every day ‒‒ TTDT (things to do today) and write stuff down. When I get bored with one task, I move to the next and keep circling around. Priorities show themselves, they’re not shy, so it’s easy to know where to focus. The day starts when I wake up and ends when I go to bed on most days.
6. You have a ton of experience in the writing field and you offer an array of services to other writers, including that of editing. Do you find being an editor yourself makes it harder, or easier, to accept constructive criticism from your editor?
I think having been a print journalist made it easy for me to take criticism. I used to be very prickly about my writing, but after being threatened, called names, yelled at, etc., you get a thick skin. Being an editor, I know better what editors mean when they hit you with a haymaker. As far as reader reactions, I’m good with whatever they think, so long as it’s based in fact. I have a couple not-so-stellar reviews on Character Development from the Inside Out, one of which is well-thought out and honest, and I appreciate it. The guy’s not crazy about it, he makes a point, uses examples, and offers his perspective. And I love the review because I feel the guy put real thought into it. I’m sorry the book’s not for him, but I appreciate his thoughtfulness.
7. I have to admit you nailed me on Excuse #34 and I mean NAILED. Is there one you want to own up to? And only give me the number, readers will have to buy this amazing book to find out which one nails you, and I mean NAILS.
Yes, No. 67. I elaborate on it in the book.
8. What is your next writing project?
Working on a companion piece to Character Development. Scheduled to be ready in a few months.
9. You write poetry, short stories, writing manuals, been a journalist for a newspaper, and the list goes on – what one arena or genre of writing do you find the most appealing, your happy place?
Opinionated nonfiction. My favorite thing in the world was writing columns at my paper. Especially the humorous ones. At the time, they were therapy, but having done them is what honed my voice. I wasn’t born obnoxious and opinionated, newspaper writing beat it into me.
10. Anyone familiar with you knows of the pending release of your book, “Stories My Evil Twin Made Up.” What exactly is your evil twin doing whilst you take the time to answer the questions to this interview?
Francois? He’s out boozing and picking up chicks.
11. It’s the eve of the Zombie Apocalypse and the human race is looking to YOU for final words. What will they be?
Use bicycles to get away, stop trying to run all the time.
Thanks, Scott. Now I’m going to wrap this blog up lest I be called out for using it as an excuse not to get back to working on my own Novel in Progress.
Happy Reading and Happy Writing, Everyone.