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Poisonous or Venomous?

Poisonous or Venomous? Sorry it has been so long between posts, but I had the unfortunate luck to have experienced two heart attacks and two strokes last year, and all within a few weeks. And no, they weren’t the result of a poisonous or venomous snake. It kept me in the hospital for four months, […]

How To Tighten Up Your Writing

I’m Having A Very, Very, Very Bad Day Have you ever taken a hard look at the word very? I’m not talking about the use of very as an adjective, or even the use of very as an adverb meaning “truly” or “the actual fact”. I’m referring to the very we hear every day, many times a day—very […]

How To Use Markdown

Markdown Spices Up Your Writing Markdown was developed by John Gruber. Markdown is a text-to-HTML conversion tool for web writers. Markdown allows you to write using an easy-to-read, easy-to-write plain text format, then convert it to structurally valid XHTML (or HTML). The above was taken from Gruber’s website. I shied away from trying Markdown for a […]

What A Copy Editor Can Do For You

Don’t Ignore The Copy Editor If you’ve ever wondered what a copy editor can do for you, you’re not alone. It’s a decision that thousands of self-published authors face each day, and many of them choose not to engage a pro. I think that’s a decision made on budget and not on common sense. I’ve put […]

When Should Writers Lie?

Even If It’s Fiction—Should Writers Lie? I read a review on one of my books the other day, and the person found it unbelievable that 6-year-old kids were drinking coffee, smoking cigarettes, and using foul language. Mind you, these scenes took place 30+ years ago, and in an ethnic neighborhood in the city. But this wasn’t the […]

What Does Your Profile Picture Say About You?

Will a Casual Profile Picture Doom Me To Mediocrity? When I first uploaded my profile picture on LinkedIn, I had a number of friends and associates tell me, in no uncertain terms, that I should use a different one. “Something more professional,” they said. I’m not one to ignore advice without checking, so I looked […]

What My Dog Taught Me About Life

One Last Lesson From Coffee Dog This is the third post I’ve done about Coffee Dog. The first was back in January, 2013. It was simply titled, Coffee Dog. The second one I wrote six months later. I called that one, A Lesson From Coffee Dog. Each of those posts were difficult to write due to the circumstances. […]

Launch of New Mystery Book

Launch of A Bullet From Dominic I’m thrilled to announce the long-awaited launch of my new mystery book— A Bullet From Dominic, the sequel to A Bullet For Carlos, in the Blood Flows South series. A Bullet From Dominic features Detective Connie Gianelli and Tip Denton, with a special appearance by Hector “Ribs” Delgado, who you will recognize from Necessary […]

CreateSpace VS Ingram Spark Part 2

CreateSpace VS Ingram Spark Print Book Distribution Last week I did the first part of this comparison. You can view it here. This week concludes the post. Weighing the Other Factors Any time that you are comparing services and products, it turns out to be far more complex than you thought it was going to […]

Six Billion Ways to Develop Characters

Building From Scratch to Develop Characters I was talking to an author last week about the writing process and she told me about a great character she had developed. I asked what role the character played in her book. She said, “I’m not using him in this book. I’m saving him for the next one. […]




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  • This blog will be a little different from many you see. Contrary to the characters in my books, I don’t really kill people, or catch those who do, so the blogs might be about reading, or writing, or animals. These are the things I have great passion for. It might also contain posts about food, or ancestry, or substance abuse. My oldest son is a great cook. My daughter is a genealogist (rootsintheboot.com) and my youngest son is a recovering drug addict. He has been clean for three years, and runs a rehab center (intoactionrecovery.com).

    I hope you enjoy the posts, and please let me know what you think.

    Ciao,

    Giacomo

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