Being a Better Writer: Micro-Blast #5 – Logistics, Combat, Social Activism

Hello readers! Welcome back after another weekend! I hope yours went well. Mine had some pretty good occurrences (one of which I won’t spoil just yet) and was also a good opportunity to step back and assess everything I’ve got on my plate at the moment. Especially with regards to writing, because Jungle is in it’s last quarter on the first draft, which means it’s soon going to be time for me to switch gears over to Shadow of an Empire and start cleaning that up for publication!

My bad, this isn’t a news post. I just got a little excited there. The weekend is my recharge time, usually, so it’s nice to come back with a bit of a boost.

Anyway, time for a Micro-Blast! Beginning, as usual, with a quick recap of what a Micro-Blast is. For the new or the uninitiated, it’s usually done when I near the end of a topic list and have a few leftover topics that don’t quite seem worthy of a full post on their own, but are still little useful tidbits of advice. Rather than discarding them outright, though, I decided to just bundle them into one larger post that addresses each one individually. Because honestly, discussing these isn’t bad. They’re just not large enough topics to warrant more than a few paragraphs’ worth of material. But there is still value in discussing them.

So, now that you’re caught up, let’s get this post underway and clean out Topic List IX!

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Being a Better Writer: Micro-Blast #4

Welcome back, readers, to yet again another Monday Being a Better Writer post that has obviously been relegated to Tuesday. Someday I’ll make enough money from my writing to be able to give up my part-time job, but right now … if they want me on Mondays, they unfortunately have me.

So, this week we’re doing another Micro-Blast! New? Wondering what a “Micro-Blast” is an what it has to do with writing? Thoughts already jumped to something non-writing related already, like those tiny fruit snacks with juice in them?

Okay, maybe I’m just hungry. Anyway, a Micro-Blast is something that usually happens as I near the end of another topic list. This being a real, physical list that I keep on my desk and consult each week to select a topic for the upcoming post. The topics on this list are collected from a variety of sources, usually anything that makes me think “Hey, that would be a good BaBW topic,” but also from readers that write in with questions and requests.

Anyway, these topics can often vary in the amount of effort needed to address them. Sometimes it’s simply a topic where I’d be better suited saying my piece and pointing readers elsewhere, other times it’s just a quick answer that isn’t really deserving of a full break-down on it’s own, but at least merits a paragraph or two, and sometimes it’s just a topic I haven’t done much thought about, and therefore needs more research before I can weigh in one way or another. And then, of course, there are the topics that don’t have any of those issues, and I can write a full post on.

But at the end of a list, what results is often a small collection of leftover topics, a hdgepodge of tiny summaries that, for whatever reason, never got posts on their own.

Micro-Blast BaBW posts are the answer to these small collections of topics. A way to “finish off” each topic list by rapid-fire tackling each remaining issue with a small posting of its own.

So, this said, it’s time to finish off, once and for all, Topic List 8 so that next week, I can start anew with Topic List 9! Which also means you can expect a post later this week asking for suggestions for the list. I’ve got a bundle of my own from the recent LTUE conference, but as always, reader suggestions are a welcome way to add topics.

Anyway, enough rambling! Let’s clear this list!

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Being a Better Writer: Micro-Blast #3

Yep! Another Tuesday BaBW post. While this has been the standard for the last three weeks, I don’t think I work this next Monday, so hopefully I’ll be able to break this chain and get back to posting these on their usual time. Granted, I could write them ahead of time … but the other blog I post these on doesn’t allow for scheduling, so it’d just end up fragmenting my reading base more than it already is, and since I’ve been working on the days I would normally write these in advance …

Anyway, I’m doing what I can. I’ve also noted, however, that my blog postings have really slowed lately. Especially since starting my job. The frequency of my postings has dropped about 50%. Which isn’t great. I’ll see if I can get some more posting done to keep everyone more up to date, even as I work on finishing the first draft of Shadow of an Empire and move Colony towards Beta.

Right, now, on to today’s posting! Today I’m clearing out some of the more short, easy answers from my topic list, which means it’s time for another micro-blast! Number 3 (1 and 2 can be found at those links, respectively). Micro-blasts are when I have a selection of topics up that are good questions … but aren’t necessarily worth long, drawn-out answers. It’s not that the questions are bad, but that the topic is usually precise enough that the answer can be a paragraph or two rather than a longer, in-depth explanation. So rather than give a shorter BaBW post, I collect several of these shorter, simpler questions together in one post and tackle them altogether.

Right, now that the explanation’s out of the way, let’s get to answering!

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Being a Better Writer: Micro-Blast #2

Hello again, readers, to another Monday! I hope yours looks a bit better than mine, at least outside your windows. We’re catching the tail-end of a winter storm here, and so the world outside looks a grey smear of clouds with a slow trickle of rain. At least, what I’d consider a slow trickle of rain. It’s a bit more for most here considering the desert environment.

I’m not griping. It just looks depressingly grey outside.

Anyway, onto this week’s topic! Or, more accurately, topics. As such, this post will probably be a shorter one. I know, I’ve said that before and ended up writing something just as long as always, but last time I did one of these, it went by quick.

If you’re unfamiliar with what a micro-blast is, I’ve done one before. Basically, a micro-blast is what happens when I have a bunch of shorter, easier topics that don’t need a full post, but I still want to tackle them.

So, with that out of the way, let’s get to it!

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Being a Better Writer: Micro-Blast #1

This post was originally written and posted November 3rd, 2014, and has been touched up and reposted here for archival purposes.

I’m back! Woo! Man, does it feel good to by typing away at a keyboard this morning!

So, as I was looking over my list of topics this weekend, I came to a realization: A large part of what I had left to do from my list was mostly there because I’d never felt they would make a sufficient topic on their own. And the few topics that hadn’t been left for that reason had been left untouched for their own reasons; namely, that they were better-suited to one-on-one Q&A sessions, truly massive and in-depth writings, or very specific break-downs.

“This is no good,” I thought to myself. How can I manage to tackle all of these small issues in separate posts? They’d be small. To the point. Too abrupt. But I still wanted to cover them.

Which is why today I’m doing the first ever Micro-Blast! Why do separate posts for each one of these small topics or general ideas, when I can do several of them in one, quick, condensed post! This way, I can clean out the last of my old list before moving on to a whole new range of topics. So, without further ado, let us begin with the blasting!

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