Rick Starkey

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!


Yep, that’s all.  Just have a Happy New Year.


What to do with all those  leftovers?  Throw some out, freeze some, and re-heat others.

It’s getting close to the end of the year.  I have been revising some finished pieces.  Now I am going to look over some of my leftover ideas, bits and pieces to see which ones I want to re-heat and try to develop, and which ones to keep frozen.  I never throw any thing out.

Guess this is my last Monday post of the year so:

Happy New Year!

Merry Christmas Eve!

Hi, I know it’s not Monday, but hi all.  Wanted to wish you a Merry Christmas just in case I’m not on tomorrow.


Yeah, plumbing.  Freezing weather brings frozen pipes.

We have a small cabin we used to lease out as a shop.  This past year we decided not to rent it so we could start another one of our ideas in there.  We have had the water off for the last few months, because we aren’t ready to open it for business.  With all the valves open, to give the pressure somewhere to go if it does freeze, their was one that froze anyway.  It was the one going to the commode tank.  I Forgot to lower the float.  Anyway, It froze.

While working on the pipes, it made me think of my writing – how many pieces do I have that have been rejected and I keep submitting them to different markets.  Maybe I need to take another look at them and check for leaks.  The last time I looked at them they looked fine, but so did my little cabin.  Maybe there is something I have overlooked.  The words are not etched in stone, or frozen in time.  I can change them.

For the final weeks of this year I am going to look over some of my forgotten pieces and do some plumbing.  Patch up all the holes and warm them back up.

That’s what I’m thinking.  How ’bout you?


Hi all, just wanted you all to know that I will only be posting a new topic on Mondays for a while.  I will be reading, and commenting on your posts, almost every day.

So, till Monday, have a happy day!


Redundancy? Redundant?

Redundancy.  Remember the movie Groundhog Day?  Have you ever had a passage in a manuscript where something happens two or three times with just minor differences?  How do you keep it from sounding, well, redundant?

What Gives? What do you give up to be able to write?

Movies, hobbies, special events, concerts, video games…  the list could go on and on.  I followed my songwriting and music dream for many years, received publishing contracts for five of my songs, two were for children’s songs.  Life got in the way, just when I was getting close, or at least getting started.

Now I am happy with a different kind of writing.  I still have to do the market research, write  letters, collect rejections and all, but I don’t have to sequence drum tracks and record demos.    I miss it, but it actually felt more time consuming than writing stories and articles even with the research.  Guess I had to pick one to follow now.  I choose writing.

What do you miss?

Breaking Free!

A professional writer writes. Period.  While some of us struggle to juggle day jobs, night jobs, family jobs and many other little, trivial things that interrupt our daily writing schedule, professionals write.  I guess that’s what weeds out the “wanna-be” writers.

I used work with a friend who owned a screen printing business.  We used a manual, five color, printing machine.   Each color had to be aligned, and hand printed using a squeegee to apply the ink into the shirt.  Though it helped me build and tone my forearm muscles, it was boring.  Sometimes we would have a run of 500 shirts, with three to five colors.  Yeah, the math.  A lot of looking at the same design, hour after hour.  Oh, by the way, the way the shirts go on the board you have to look at it up-side-down.  You constantly have to check for mistakes and keep all the screens aligned so the final print isn’t all “fuzzy” looking.  The only way to complete the job was to be persistent.  You could see the stacks of shirts diminishing one by one till finally you printed the last color on the last shirt.  Celebrate!  Then, start on the next order.

Sounds like a lot of work.  Just as is writing—a lot of work.  The more we write and get rejected, the better we get, and the more we learn.  I hope.  Somehow, we write no matter what.  Somehow, we break free from all the other little, big, and trivial jobs we must do, and write.

Too busy to write?

Okay, I’ve had a very busy week.  Lots going on, more than normal.  How does one find time to work on their writing when they don’t have time to write?  Writing is, well, actually more than just writing.  Somehow writers find time to write, or at least work on their writing when they don’t have time to write.

I steal time over breakfast proofreading or editing a MS, marking it up to revise later.  I’m not green when it comes to revising.  I have to print it out.  I know, I know it’s awful, and wastes paper, but before you shun me, I do use both sides.  After marking it up on one side and revising on the computer, I draw Xs across the pages and print the revised version on the other side.  Maybe I could be considered half green.

Proofing at breakfast, in the car, waiting for someone or anytime you can steal a few minutes is, well, part of writing.  It has to be done.

Even watching a movie or show on TV can be used for searching market books to find where to send my next submission.

And don’t forget to keep an old copy of Writers Digest or two in the car.  Just in case.  Sometimes it is nice to re-read some of the articles.

On your busy days, how do you find time to write, or at least pursue your writing?

Black Friday, not just for money.

It’s Black Friday!  To business owners, this is the day to get out of the red and into the black on their bottom line.  To consumers, it is a day for sales, and going into the red and out of the black on their bottom line.

To me, as a writer, it makes me think of the lines I have written this last year and how much black I have put on paper.  Sure writing is a business, but I prefer to look at Black Friday to measure how much black ink I have actually used in my craft.  Each year from now own, Black Friday will make me stop and think about my bottom line as a writer.  Am I writing enough?

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hi, just wanted to tell everyone Happy Thanksgiving.


That’s all.

Pick and Choose

Do you write articles for magazines that post a list of themes? Do you write one for each theme that is listed, or do you pick and choose?

For some writers it is fine to write something for all of them. I like to pick and choose the ones that really interest me so I can devote more energy to the few I like the most.

So like a picky editor, I’m a picky writer. Are you?