Sunday, April 29, 2007

Writing Watches

Below is an article of rambling writing tips and interesting little tid bits. I could probably write an article a week directed at these. Some will help would be writers and some wont but one thing for sure is that most of them are interesting.

1. Footnote

A footnote is a complete bibliographical citation indicated by a number in the text. Endnotes follow the same format but are listed on a page at the end of the paper. Today’s great computer programs make them easy to prepare.

2. Paragraphs

Paragraphs in newspapers are most often one or two sentences long. Paragraphs in essays are far longer. Newspapers writers assume your not going to read the article all the way through. They keep their paragraphs punchy to keep you interested. Essay writers assume you’re in for the long haul. They have the luxury of writing more discursive passages.

3. English Is Different

All English isn’t the same. British English, used not only in Great Britain but also in India, the West Indies, and parts of Africa, uses some words and phrases differently from American English. For example, here are some common British words and the American equivalents: Lorry(truck), lift(elevator), bonnet(car hood), chips(French fries), crisps(snack chips), flat(apartment), barrister or solicitor(attorney or lawyer), nappy(diaper), mate(buddy), sweets(candy).

4. Expert Fields

Warning: The writer’s education and academic degrees must match the field in which he or she is claiming expertise. Having a medical degree in brain surgery, for example, doesn’t give someone the credentials to write about rocket science-or any other subject outside his or her field.

5. Friends Don’t Read Drafts

Thinking of asking a friend or a lover to read your drafts to help you edit them? It’s a great idea from your stand point, but your reader may not be as enthusiastic. British Prime Minister and writer Benjamin Disraeli (1804-1881) had a standard reply unmatched for diplomatic ambiguity for people who sent him unsolicited manuscripts to read: “Many thanks; I shall lose no time in reading it.”

I hope you find some of these facts interesting and some of the tips useful. Keep watching for more articles with more and more tips and facts.

Dale Mazurek

Dale is a professional online writer and he is also in the process of getting his first novel published. You can have a look at three more of his very popular blogs at or and

Writing What Nots

As novice writers we are always looking for that one big break that would help to jump start our careers. Sometimes we take things way to seriously and forget that writing at first is not about paying the bills. I love writing but let me tell you if I had to rely on it to pay the bills I would be living on the street. In this article I am going to point out some small tid bits about writing so sit back and enjoy.

1. The Paragraph

The paragraph first made its debut in the 1866 book Composition and Rhetoric, by Alexander Bain, a professor of rhetoric at the University of Aberdeen in Scotland. Bain defined a paragraph as a “collection of sentences with unity of purpose.” Later, the paragraph came to be seen as a small-scale composition, a view we still hold today, due to the clear beginning, middle, and end that both share.

2. Plot

Plot is the arrangement of events in a story. Plots include the exposition, rising action, climax, and denouement (resolution).

3. Bake A Cake

Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that writing is a neat process. It’s rather messy, like baking a cake. As you add each “ingredient,” You stir the whole thing around a lot to blend it altogether. If your paper looks sloppy, then you’re probably on the right track.

4. Some Formats

Paragraphs in essays, novels, short stories, and so on are normally indented 5 spaces. This is set automatically on your tab key. Business letters, in contrast, are often typed in “block format,” without indented paragraphs. Instead, you separate the paragraphs with a double space. When deciding whether or not to indent paragraphs in business documents, follow the style conventions used in your business or company.

5. Too Much

There’s such a thing as too much elaboration. You’re under no obligation to include everything you found. Don’t beat the topic to death.

If you look around you will find hundreds and hundreds of little tid bits like the ones here. In the future I will be writing more articles with more of these little helpers. If you choose to use any of them, that is entirely up to you but they are fun to read and discover where a lot of them come from.

Dale Mazurek
Dale is a professional on line writer. He is also in the process of getting his first novel published. You can check out some of his very popular blogs at or and his newest

Sunday, April 22, 2007

The Hardy Boys

Even young teens could see that Frank and Joe Hardy, sons of a famous detective, stumbled onto way too many crazy plots. How many secret coves, smuggling operations, and hidden treasures can one town have? And what self respecting villain would be repeatedly thwarted by a couple of kids? Still, that’s the world created, ostensibly, by Franklin W. Dixon. In reality, the series was the brain child of Edward Stratemeyer, who put together a team of anonymous scribes to churn out books based on his outlines, then printed them under the by-line of the made-up Dixon. Thus it’s been since 1927, though after 1959 the first 38 adventures were revised and reissued with changes said to “incorporate the most up-to-date methods used by police and private investigators.” In truth, the books were shortened and rewritten to, among other things, remove their most racial stereotyping. More changes came after Simon & Schuster bought the line in 1979. Attempts were made to appeal to older readers (with the Hardy Boys Casefile Series) and to younger ones (with the Frank and Joe Hardy-The Clues Brothers line). But these were to the two-fisted originals what Tiny Toons and Muppet Babies are to authentic Looney Tunes and classic Muppets.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Thank You

Hello to everyone who has taken a look at my blog or those of you who will be looking at it for the first time. When I first started this blog I never dreamed it would become so popular. I am getting more and more hits everyday and the nice thing is I am starting to get some comments as well. Without all you great readers my blog would have been a flop a long time ago. In the future I will be adding more info that I think everyone can use. I will also be adding more of my short stories for your reading enjoyment or non enjoyment. So in closing I would just like to say thank you one more time. I would also like to ask all of you a favour. If you like my blog then tell your friends and family about it and if you don’t like it then tell me so I can improve it with your suggestions.

Dale Mazurek

Thursday, April 12, 2007

How To Write A Short Story (Part 2)

Writing short stories can be very valuable to your writing career. Short stories are also a very quick way to put your feelings on paper. Starting to write short stories can be a tough project but the more you write the better you will get. In the next couple of weeks I will be submitting a 10 part series on how to write short stories. This will be the second edition on how to write short stories.

First Paragraph Has To Be The Catchy One

Everyone today is reading but there reading fast. We live in such a high paced environment that people who do read need to be caught in the first paragraph or else there gone to the next story. The first paragraph has to be unusual. What happens has to be unexpected and full of conflict and action right from the beginning. It is a short story and the beginning is always close to the end so there is no room for being lazy when it comes to short stories.

The Rest Of The Paragraph

You have to figure out where your character fits in with the conflict and you have to introduce the protagonist and give a hint into how he is going to make things difficult.

Put It Together

Now the two parts have to be put together. It is important that you at least understand a bit about fiction before making the two come together. It’s not so different from preparing your favorite meal. It makes a big difference in the meal if you put the wrong ingredients as compared to the right ones. Your story is no different than this. As long as you put the right amount of rules in the right place then your first paragraph will be a great paragraph.

This is the end of my second article on how to write a short story. I make these tips available because I think there is an author in everyone. Just because you write doesn’t mean you have to get paid for it. You should first and foremost write because you love it and everything will eventually fall into place.

Dale Mazurek

Dale is in the process of getting his first novel published. You can read some of his short stories at You can also check in on a couple of his interactive blogs at and

Friday, April 6, 2007

How To Write A Short Story (Part 1)

Writing short stories can be very valuable to your writing career. Short stories are also very quick ways to put on paper what you’re feeling about something. Starting to write short stories can be a tough project but the more you write the better you will get at it. In the next couple of weeks I will be submitting a 10 part series on how to write your short stories. This will be the first edition on writing short stories.

Getting Started
1. Write your list without stopping. Figure out your plots, tones and characters. Develop these things from things you know. Use things that make you smile and things that make you angry or sad. Now a story is starting to develop around your ideas.
2. Think about times in your life that were stressful or happy. Pick a few of them and write a paragraph on each one.
3. Choose a word that is going to be the main word of your story. Write it in the middle of the page and then start writing around it. Write any other words that come to mind and just keep writing. When you are sure your done you can circle all the words that you think link together and that you are going to use in your story.
4. Keep everything that you write. It doesn’t matter how messy or organized it is just make sure you keep it so you can look back and possibly use some of the material in future writings.
5. It doesn’t matter how you feel. You have to sit down and write every day. It can be for ten minutes or 4 hours. That doesn’t matter as long as you are writing something every day.
6. Don’t be scared to use other people’s stories. I don’t mean plagiarizing but I mean listening. Just listen to what people are saying. The stories people have can be very interesting and can be great topics for your short stories.
7. Read every day. I don’t care how much or what but you should be reading every day. This will give you insight into what other people are writing about plus it will show you different styles of writing. You cannot be successful at writing if you don’t read.
This is the end of my first article on how to write a short story. I make these tips available because I think there is an author in everyone. Just because you write doesn’t mean you have to get paid for it. You should first and foremost write because you love it and everything will eventually fall into place.
Dale Mazurek

Dale is in the process of getting his first novel published. You can read some of his short stories and more writing tips at his writing blog at You can also check in on a couple of his interactive blogs at and

Wednesday, April 4, 2007


Jake was excited when he got home. He had been with Continental Drilling for 15 years now. He had been on the same rig for 12 out of those 15 years. He had been drilling for 9 years. Now the time had come for him to move up the ladder to the highest position on the rig. His rig manager was let go and informally he had been told that the job was as good as his. Jake went home that evening and told his wife and family. They all knew that this was something he has been looking forward to for many years and now supposedly it has come.
That night was a fun filled night of drinking and celebrating. The party went on into the wee hours of the morning. Jake did have to work so for the most part he was pretty good through the night. He knew he would be tired at work the next morning but that would be a lot easier to deal with than being hung over. The last of the guests left at around three thirty in the morning. That didn’t matter because there was no way Jake was going to be able to sleep any way. He was very excited. He knew the next couple of days would be weird. There would be relief rig managers getting stuff tidied up and sorted before Jake would be able to settle into his new job. He knew that formally the job had not been offered to him but he was also pretty sure he knew how this chain of command thing went and it looked pretty good that he would be at the top of this chain.
Jake arrived at the rig the next morning to carry on with his drilling job until the announcement of his job was made. He was pretty happy that he didn’t get hammered the night before. Being tired was hard enough.
It was a busy day on the rig so Jake had actually forgot about what was going on for a while and that was probably the best thing because what would happen next would entirely turn jakes life around along with his family, friends and a lot of coworkers.
It was around nine in the morning and so far things had been pretty crazy on the rig. Things were freezing up and it seemed like just nothing was going right. Jake was in the dog house doing his books when he watched a new facing walk in. The man was huge. He looked to be about 50. He was about 6ft6 and looked like he weighed about 350 pounds and he was wearing continental coveralls. The fellow introduced himself as Tyler hatch the new rig manager. At that moment Jake felt something pop in his head. This was his job and this big goof just walked into the dog house and pretty much slapped Jake in the face by telling him what he just did.
There was no hesitation and there was no stopping him now. He knew how hard he worked to get to where he was and he wasn’t going to have it taken away now. On top of that it was going to be total embarrassment once his family and friends start to find out about this. The first thing Jake saw was a 36 inch pipe wrench and before he could even think about it the rig manager was lying dead on the floor in the dog house with the blood already running under the floor. It didn’t even seem to fizz on him. Jake was now on a mission and he wasn’t going to stop until either he was dead or the mission was complete.
Next place Jake went was to his truck. From behind the seat he pulled out the case that was holding his Ruger 270. Calmly, trying to not attract attention Jake made his way back to the dog house, out on to the floor and started climbing the ladder to the monkey boards where he would take his last stand. Once up there Jake had a look around and it was quite obvious that no one had a clue yet as to what was going on. It was frightening how Jake took the gun out of the case. It was like he was making popcorn or something. He did it without even thinking about what he was about to do or what the ramifications would be. The clip on the gun held 7 shots so he filled that up and put the rest of the box on the ledge next to him. In total he had enough shells to inflict a lot of damage to the personnel left on location.
The first person he noticed was the consultant walking around in his shack. Jake lifted the gun and put the cross hairs on the main man from the oil company. This was actually a strategic move. By taking this man out it left no one around a phone which in turn gave Jake more time to get done what he felt needed to be done. He pulled the trigger and immediately saw the consultant fall to the floor. Through the sights Jake could see the lifeless body lying on the floor. Jake was quite convinced that the shot was a kill shot. Jake looked around and it was immediately obvious that everyone on location heard the shot and figured out what was going on.
People were running and trying to hide. Everyone was trying to get out of the line of fire. Jake seen a couple rough necks run in to the engine room. He quickly noticed the two, one hundred pound bottles of propane beside the motor house. The next shot landed dead center in the middle of one of the bottles instantly killing the two roughnecks that were inside the motor house. Jake was pretty high on himself. He had 4 people dead and only had to use two shots.
The next couple of hours were pretty slow. No one was showing their face. The couple bits of movement that Jake thought he saw were quickly discounted as nothing. Jake knew that this thing would be coming to an end now. He was no dummy. He knew he would not be leaving this board alive.
Jake kept watching the road and now he finally saw what he had been looking for in the last couple of hours. Jake saw flashers approaching. He wasted no time in lifting the gun and shooting the driver of the first cruiser that was coming down the road. Now he had another death added to his score but now he had gone big time. He killed a cop and there was going to be absolutely zero sympathy for him now but he wasn’t looking for sympathy because if he was then he would have taken the non promotion like a kid and cowered home with it.
At his last count he saw at least 100 cops all with guns pointed at him. The end was very near and he knew it but he didn’t care anymore. He knew it was time for one more kick at the kitty. He was going to try and get off one more shot but then he knew it would be over. He put his sights on one of the police cars and pulled the trigger. For a split second he heard his shot hit the cop car but he knew he didn’t hit any one else and then the gunfire began. All hundred cops started shooting and most of the bullets were coming through the wind boards with about 50 percent landing in his body. Jake was dyeing quickly. The bullets that were still hitting him were just a technicality. After about the third one that hit him he knew he was dead.
Jake only had only one thought before he died. At least the fact that he never got the promotion that he thought he would get wouldn’t even come into play. He would go out as one of the biggest stories of the year and nobody would ever wrong him again