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Double-Wide Writing


Writing Etc. – January 14, 2013

ISSN: 1545-5580

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In This Issue:

Notes from Minnesota: What to do, what to do?

Writing Wide: Double Wide Trailers

2014 Action Plan to Jumpstart Your Writing Career


This issue is sponsored by:

Sharpen your writing chops in ’14 with Billie Williams’ Triple Pack.

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These delightful resources are an incredible spring board into a world of creativity and common sense tools to help your stories sparkle.

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Notes from Minnesota

One step forward, one step back.

I hear flexibility is the hallmark of mental health. That must mean I’m pretty mentally healthy. Or not.

I was exceedingly encouraged last time we shared time together, feeling fabulous. I even announced Writing Etc. would be back on a regular editorial schedule. Then things shifted.

The cancer isn’t back as far as I know (I’ve got another big test in two weeks). But I may have been a bit premature on my “things going back to normal” mantra. I’m not sure what “normal” is anymore, I suppose I’ll eventually establish a new normal.

But no. Dealing with cancer is rough. Post surgery body changes are far more challenging than I anticipated. Life can be an emotional and physical roller coaster.

So, once again I’m cautiously easing back into the swing of things. I’m still working on the on-site copywriting project I mentioned earlier. It allowed me to enter 2014 debt free from cancer bills. But the overall price is yet to be determined.

I cringe every time I hear the supervisors yelling at the warehouse workers. They call them f-ing morons. Then they wonder why the staff isn’t particularly meticulous about their tasks. The disconnect is stunning. Sometimes writing in that environment is like working in a pressure cooker.

I can’t help but wonder what this new assignment is doing to me. I mentioned earlier that when you take on a writing project solely for the money, you earn every cent. But my newfound schedule has left me grappling with depression. I’ve found the slippery slope into darkness far more difficult to navigate than usual. I’m hoping this is a temporary situation.

So the question I grapple with is this: financial security or sanity?

Then I wonder how many fellow writers face this difficult question? Probably more than I’d like to imagine.

What to do, what to do? Looks like I have much to ponder in 2014…

Onward and upward,.


P.S. If you’ve recently submitted a query, I haven’t forgotten you. You’ll get a response shortly. If you emailed a kind note, thank-you. Your wonderful support has been overwhelming.


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~~~~~~~~~~~~ Feature Article ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


“Mid pleasures and palaces though we may roam,

Be it ever so humble, there is no place like home.”

J.H. Payne, American actor, Dramatist, & Songwriter

A double-wide trailer home is not two houses but one holding more. Like a novel rather than a short story. The double-wide is portable, still a mobile home, as the novel is still a story. In a short story, you have beginning, middle, and end just as in a novel. Portability means you can cover a lot of territory with your short story in a little space, but a novel allows you to explore a double wide – larger picture.

As your double-wide is delivered in halves to your land and your novel is delivered in halves. The first half leads you up to the peak – the major turning point of your story, which may or may not necessarily, be the climax. At the very least, it will be the major point of your story, the reason, and the motivating factor of your story. The second half leads from the peak action, point/climax to the denouement and the end.

The double-wide has most of its plumbing on one side of the house. There is a good reason for this. This is to lessen the stress on the plumbing fixtures and pipes but also the necessity of another connection, which could be the source of a leak. Your story should contain a good deal of back-story and introductory business in the beginning sections to facilitate the putting together of the story idea without leaks about the climax leads, but not leaks.

The furnace is contained on one side of the house, but the ductwork must run, below through out the entire double-wide structure. This ductwork is the labyrinth of clues and foreshadowing you wish to construct throughout the underlying framework of your story.

While your double-wide trailer was transported to your site, the windows and doors were locked to prevent damage. Your windows were also covered to prevent breakage. In this state, there is no entrance to the home. No peeking is allowed into the interior to see the layout, or the color of the walls, carpeting, or cabinetry. You have to rely on the descriptive brochure for the details. Your novel/story must present enough information to give some idea of what to expect once we are allowed inside the double-wide novel.

Your double-wide could be delivered to a concrete slab or a full basement. The choice is yours. The novel or story you deliver makes a similar choice. You have prepared us before hand to see that the story/house is finished when it is set on the concrete slab or else there is another level to your story/novel we have not explored. The moving and setting in place of the double-wide on the basement then becomes the anti-climax. The underlying basement houses the climax, which you will lead us through once your double-wide is set in place and the roof is seamlessly, connected.

Once you have given us the climax -the basement – there remains some clean up and final setting up of the house. That is, tying up loose ends of the story so that all the characters, all the questions raised, and all the events are wrapped and neatly packaged into a complete story housed between two artfully done, double-wide covers.

EXERCISES: 1.) Rough sketch a house outline on a piece of paper. Put your story parts and a brief summary of each in the various spots of the house as discussed in the above article. Perhaps you begin in the attic with a scrapbook of back-story. On the other hand, maybe you choose to start in the first floor kitchen area with present day drama. You decide, it is your house, your double-wide novel. How many rooms will you have? Three rooms are essential remember, the beginning, middle and end. Now WRITE!


This article was an excerpt from Billie Williams’ Writing Wide: Exercises in Creative Writing. This critically acclaimed volume is available as an instant download in the Billie Williams Triple Pack. Also included is Characters in Search of an Author and A Writer’s Vehicle: Henry Ford’s Way. Check it out here.


2014 Action Plan to Jumpstart Your Writing Career

Do you journal? How do you document your life? Do you (or should you) document your life. Do you write daily?

This year, make it a priority to write daily. It doesn’t matter if you’re writing for publication, what you’re doing it sharpening your skills.

But you should write something… anything… daily. No matter what.


To subscr*ibe to Writing Etc. and receive the fr*e e-book, “Power Queries,” surf here:


Forward Writing Etc. to all your friends! They’ll be glad you did.

You can easily manage your subscription to Writing Etc. by clicking the links at the end of this e-mail.


You can use any of these articles free of charge on your own website or zine. Just don’t make any changes and be sure to include this byline:

This article is courtesy of Filbert Publishing. Make your writing sparkle, write killer queries, get published. Subscribe to Writing Etc., the free e-mag for freelancers and receive the e-book “Power Queries.”



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