May 30, 2014
Last week, I printed out Away Game, the sequel to Home Team that I wrote last October. It’s not as bad as I remember! It needs some work, and an ending, then I need to figure out how to make a book, but I want to get it out as soon as possible. As long as the teams left in the Playoffs continue to take every series to seven games, I just might have a new story for you before someone claims the Stanley Cup.

Subscribe for news every month about books, sales, weird Wikipedia searches, and what YouTube videos I’m using to distract myself from writing.

Last week, I printed out Away Game, the sequel to Home Team that I wrote last October. It’s not as bad as I remember! It needs some work, and an ending, then I need to figure out how to make a book, but I want to get it out as soon as possible. As long as the teams left in the Playoffs continue to take every series to seven games, I just might have a new story for you before someone claims the Stanley Cup.

Subscribe for news every month about books, sales, weird Wikipedia searches, and what YouTube videos I’m using to distract myself from writing.

May 13, 2014

Bonus

Stephen King writes a novella in between his novels. He talks about this in his collection, Different Seasons, about how he has enough writing energy leftover when he’s finished a novel to write something else, but not enough energy to write another novel. This is true. Finishing a project gives you a kind of boost I can’t explain. It’s a high, and you want to hang onto it as long as possible. Stephen Kings writes novellas as a bonus, but I write novellas as my main thing, so I write short stories in between.

This one—I figured it would take about a week. It’s been longer. My high ran out somewhere around 4k, and now it’s just the work of writing, and my brain is thinking, What’s next? What’s next? This, right here. This is next until it’s done. It’s only a few thousand words, and god knows what I’m going to do with it, but it’s a story that needs finishing. Finishing is everything. No matter how small your project, there’s a high waiting for you at the end, and it feels so good. Believe me.

Subscribe for news every month about books, sales, weird Wikipedia searches, and what YouTube videos I’m using to distract myself from writing.

May 5, 2014

Tiny Love Stories by Jameson Dash

Here are the rules, kids: subscribe, reply to the list with three words, and I’ll use your prompt to write a tiny love story.

The stories are for subscribers only, free, and delivered right to your inbox. So join us for some tiny fun (as well as news about books, sales, weird Wikipedia searches, and what YouTube videos I’m using to distract myself from writing this week).

Apr 30, 2014

Schedule

My schedule is different than every other “creative” person will advise you: I write in the afternoon. People will tell you to get up early and write in the morning. Write before you do anything else so your mind is clear. Write before work because you’ll be tired later.

But I am not a morning person. Not even when I was in school or had a regular job or the early shift. Any time I thought I was adjusting to waking up before 7, I was wrong, and as soon as my schedule changed, I was back to sleep.

I need a ramp. I need to hear other voices in my head, not only my own. I need something to eat in the morning. I need to get my fingers moving with some words that don’t matter. Then I can write. Then I can do my work. Then I feel like my eyes are open, and my mind is clear, and I have something to say. I don’t know about you, but that doesn’t happen for me at 7 o’clock in the morning.

Apr 21, 2014
In my push to finish this ever-expanding novella for April, I forgot to mark the anniversary of my first publication. April 10th, 2013, A Great Rough Diamond was released. Since then, two more novellas, two more short stories, and a lot of words which, hopefully, you’ll be seeing soon. Thank you to everyone who has bought, read, rated, reviewed, or passed along a recommendation. It’s still weird for me to think of my books sorted next to so many famous names in your ereaders, but I’m going to keep writing, and maybe a few anniversaries from now, I’ll be more used to it. I hope you’ll still be reading. 

In my push to finish this ever-expanding novella for April, I forgot to mark the anniversary of my first publication. April 10th, 2013, A Great Rough Diamond was released. Since then, two more novellas, two more short stories, and a lot of words which, hopefully, you’ll be seeing soon. Thank you to everyone who has bought, read, rated, reviewed, or passed along a recommendation. It’s still weird for me to think of my books sorted next to so many famous names in your ereaders, but I’m going to keep writing, and maybe a few anniversaries from now, I’ll be more used to it. I hope you’ll still be reading. 

Apr 14, 2014

Goals

Set yourself goals you know you can finish, but also massacre them some days.

On some days, making your daily 500 will be tough, but you’ll do it. String together a few of those 500 days, and soon you’ll be doing 600, 1200, and 2000 word days. Killing a 500 word day does far more for your sanity than struggling to constantly make 5000 word days. Spread your goal out. Let your words breathe.

"Write to the next milestone" is what has been working for me. It’s less about a number, and more about crossing a line. Scrivener counts two ways: once you set a total goal and a deadline, the program automatically calculates what you need to write each day to meet both. I have a third count because I write in sections of a thousand words. So each day, I want to finish a section, write the daily quota, and also see the total tick over to the next big number.

All of these tallies spur me on. If, at the end of my writing day, I see I’m less than 200 words from the next section, I’ll write it. Some nights, that’ll put me less than 100 words from the next big number. So why not write that, too? Each goal line I cross, brings the next one that much closer. 

Apr 8, 2014
I’m writing something set in Ibiza, and when I googled for a local beer, I found this gorgeous bit of packaging. I had to put it into the story. Someone take me to Ibiza for a couple of Cerveza Isleñas on the beach.
The answer is no, because you’re going to ask, I’ve never been to Ibiza. I’ve never been to London either, where this story began (and might end. I haven’t decided yet). But there’s Google and Wikipedia and Yelp and Street View. 
I had this picture in my head of one character leaving the hotel after a fight with the other, then deciding to get out of the taxi and walk into town. Ibiza proper is on a harbour, I knew that, so the picture in my head looked like Victoria, a harbour city I know well, on Vancouver Island, off the coast of my province, British Columbia. I wrote the whole thing as if the character was walking from the hotel side of the harbour, along the edge of the marina, and into the downtown core. 
Then I looked at Ibiza in Google street view, and, amazingly, I was exactly right. Sure, the climate is a little different (or completely opposite), but the hotels are on one side, the city on the other, and there’s a marina in the middle. 
There’s a lot to be said for writing what you know. But don’t let that scare you from trying something new. I don’t even like beer, but look how pretty.

I’m writing something set in Ibiza, and when I googled for a local beer, I found this gorgeous bit of packaging. I had to put it into the story. Someone take me to Ibiza for a couple of Cerveza Isleñas on the beach.

The answer is no, because you’re going to ask, I’ve never been to Ibiza. I’ve never been to London either, where this story began (and might end. I haven’t decided yet). But there’s Google and Wikipedia and Yelp and Street View. 

I had this picture in my head of one character leaving the hotel after a fight with the other, then deciding to get out of the taxi and walk into town. Ibiza proper is on a harbour, I knew that, so the picture in my head looked like Victoria, a harbour city I know well, on Vancouver Island, off the coast of my province, British Columbia. I wrote the whole thing as if the character was walking from the hotel side of the harbour, along the edge of the marina, and into the downtown core. 

Then I looked at Ibiza in Google street view, and, amazingly, I was exactly right. Sure, the climate is a little different (or completely opposite), but the hotels are on one side, the city on the other, and there’s a marina in the middle. 

There’s a lot to be said for writing what you know. But don’t let that scare you from trying something new. I don’t even like beer, but look how pretty.

Feb 12, 2014
A teaser, of course. I can’t leave you hanging without a little something.

"So, what’d you do?" Gina barely let him sit down before she started in.
"How do you know?" Andy thought about hiding in his menu, but her eyes had caught his, and there was no running. Gina was wiser than all of them. He was glad she was his friend, even when she looked at him like this. "What do you know?"
"Nat showed up for breakfast," she explained. Andy had figured as much. "They talked. Taylor said he feels bad."
Andy never wanted to make Nat feel bad. “I said something stupid,” he said. It was the easiest was to explain last night. His whole life, in fact.
"Let’s order. I need French fries with heartbreak."
The waiter brought them ice water. Andy was wearing his white uniform shirt with the sleeves rolled up, and he noticed how the waiter checked him out. Usually, that was nice. It was weird, and weirder when he was with Nat, but it was always flattering. It was the guys and girls who tried to buy him drinks when they were out at their bar that Andy couldn’t deal with. He always made Nat pick up the next round, while Andy hid in the booth.
Today, the waiter’s look made Andy roll his sleeves back down, buttoning the cuffs tight around his wrists.
"What is going on?" Gina asked.
He leaned across the table. It was supposed to be the lull between lunch and dinner, but the restaurant was packed. “Did you and Taylor have sex last night?”
Gina laughed. “Are you kidding? Of course we did.” She preened a little, running a hand through her long black hair. “We always have the best sex after the boys have one of their nights.”
That only made Andy feel worse. He wanted to lay his head on the table and disappear. “Last night,” he admitted, his face in his hands. “I told Nat I hate sex.”

Buy Conversation Hearts, a Valentine’s Day anthology including my story, "Same Sex".

A teaser, of course. I can’t leave you hanging without a little something.

"So, what’d you do?" Gina barely let him sit down before she started in.

"How do you know?" Andy thought about hiding in his menu, but her eyes had caught his, and there was no running. Gina was wiser than all of them. He was glad she was his friend, even when she looked at him like this. "What do you know?"

"Nat showed up for breakfast," she explained. Andy had figured as much. "They talked. Taylor said he feels bad."

Andy never wanted to make Nat feel bad. “I said something stupid,” he said. It was the easiest was to explain last night. His whole life, in fact.

"Let’s order. I need French fries with heartbreak."

The waiter brought them ice water. Andy was wearing his white uniform shirt with the sleeves rolled up, and he noticed how the waiter checked him out. Usually, that was nice. It was weird, and weirder when he was with Nat, but it was always flattering. It was the guys and girls who tried to buy him drinks when they were out at their bar that Andy couldn’t deal with. He always made Nat pick up the next round, while Andy hid in the booth.

Today, the waiter’s look made Andy roll his sleeves back down, buttoning the cuffs tight around his wrists.

"What is going on?" Gina asked.

He leaned across the table. It was supposed to be the lull between lunch and dinner, but the restaurant was packed. “Did you and Taylor have sex last night?”

Gina laughed. “Are you kidding? Of course we did.” She preened a little, running a hand through her long black hair. “We always have the best sex after the boys have one of their nights.”

That only made Andy feel worse. He wanted to lay his head on the table and disappear. “Last night,” he admitted, his face in his hands. “I told Nat I hate sex.”

Buy Conversation Hearts, a Valentine’s Day anthology including my story, "Same Sex".

Feb 12, 2014

Conversation Hearts anthology from Torquere Press

Nine new Valentine’s Day stories in this new anthology from Torquere. Including mine, “Same Sex”!

Andy likes sex. He likes sex with his boyfriend. Nat wants to try new things in bed, the kinds of things he sees in porn, and the kinds of things that make Andy nervous. If Andy is vanilla, and Nat is a little kinkier, what do they have to do to get along? With Valentine’s Day approaching, Andy plans dinner at home to figure out if they still like the same sex.

I had been thinking about a story where the weirdest kink one could admit was cuddling. Valentine’s Day seemed like the perfect time to write that conversation, no matter how awkward it might be. That’s what this anthology is about: talking and getting the awkward stuff out in the open. So the guys can get down to the good stuff. 

Buy Conversation Hearts now and, if you haven’t already, my other books from Torquere, which are on sale to celebrate this release. Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone!

Jan 27, 2014
I have a new story in the Torquere Valentine’s Day anthology! It’s called “Same Sex”, and, in keeping with the conversation hearts theme, it’s about Andy, who doesn’t know how to tell his boyfriend, Nat, that he’s not happy with their sex life. 
I’m actually working on the final edits right now, so you should hit my ask box with all kinds of distracting questions! Maybe I’ll have a teaser to offer up later.

I have a new story in the Torquere Valentine’s Day anthology! It’s called “Same Sex”, and, in keeping with the conversation hearts theme, it’s about Andy, who doesn’t know how to tell his boyfriend, Nat, that he’s not happy with their sex life. 

I’m actually working on the final edits right now, so you should hit my ask box with all kinds of distracting questions! Maybe I’ll have a teaser to offer up later.

Dec 27, 2013
My newest short story, “Angel on High”, is available in Twelve Days of Kinkmas, a Christmas anthology from Ravenous Romance.


Reese meets his angel when Patrick auditions for the St. Luke’s Christmas Revue. The two men explore their fantasies in that same church, where Reese found his own awakening, so many years ago.

I made Patrick an aerials performer, because I was curious what kinds of things you could get up to with those long lengths of silk. Some very nice things, turns out. You can pick up this story right now, with eleven more to read before the twelve days of Christmas are over. 

My newest short story, “Angel on High”, is available in Twelve Days of Kinkmas, a Christmas anthology from Ravenous Romance.

Reese meets his angel when Patrick auditions for the St. Luke’s Christmas Revue. The two men explore their fantasies in that same church, where Reese found his own awakening, so many years ago.

I made Patrick an aerials performer, because I was curious what kinds of things you could get up to with those long lengths of silk. Some very nice things, turns out. You can pick up this story right now, with eleven more to read before the twelve days of Christmas are over. 

Dec 20, 2013
I come bringing presents! My next story will be published in this anthology from Ravenous Romance. It’s a little bit Christmas-y and a little bit bondage-y. Just in time for the holidays.

I come bringing presents! My next story will be published in this anthology from Ravenous Romance. It’s a little bit Christmas-y and a little bit bondage-y. Just in time for the holidays.

Dec 9, 2013

Reading mode

Over the past week or so, I’ve read a few hundred thousand words and written none. I used to think of my brain having a writing mode and a reading mode. When I was writing, when I was stuck into a book I couldn’t put down, when I was tearing through a series or an author’s back catalogue, when I was in the middle of three different books at once, I couldn’t write. I had someone else’s words in my head, not my own. I could always call it research, right?

But when I was writing, when I was living in another world, when I was mapping out the stories of my own characters, when I was working to hit a daily deadline, I couldn’t read. And that was a good thing, too, because it meant my focus was absolute. It cut in half the things out there to distract me.

Being a writer is learning to manage those two modes, and more than that, learning to allow for them both in the course of your day. I can’t, and won’t, live without either one. I figured out I wanted to be a writer at a very young age, but even still, I was a reader first.

After an October where I wrote a novella and a November where I wrote four short stories, this December, I’m easing myself back into writing, laying the groundwork for my January project: rewriting a novel for submission. So I’m still reading a lot, but that’s OK while I’m working on structure, outlines, research, and promoting one of the supporting characters to second narrator. This month isn’t so much about the word count as it’s about flipping the switch to get my brain back into writing mode for the new year.

Nov 30, 2013

Tourists

This week, a friend from LA came to visit. She picked the best time, too. We had just enough cold and grey to make it feel like Vancouver, but none of the snow we often see in November. This trip was, actually, exactly why I decided not to do NaNoWriMo this year. This November, I decided to write a bunch of shorts for a bunch of open calls. A kind of practice for writing short and writing fast. I submitted five stories before she arrived last week. So far, I’ve sold two. That feels like winning NaNo.

Visiting another city is fun, but I love having friends visit my city. It’s a chance for me to play tourist and guide at the same time. It’s an excuse to wander through the busy streets to find the empty ones. It’s a reason to try new food, to drink new cocktails, to travel far, or to see a familiar part of your city, but during the wrong season. Parks in the winter are fascinating in their contrasts.

It’s a time for stories. I’m always collecting stories, whether I recognise it in the moment or only after, after a debrief on the couch with a cup of tea.

When we were younger writers, we were told to write the familiar. But Canadians are also told to write about America. You can’t sell a book about Canada to America, they say. I think my next book will be set here, in my city. I have a lot of stories to tell.

Nov 20, 2013

Reviews!

My publisher, Dreamspinner Press, dutifully sends me reviews of Home Team. They even screen them beforehand, only sending on links to the positive reviews. I don’t read them. It’s nice to know they’re out there, I’m happy people are reading my books, and I’m grateful, but I’m just trying to make the next book better.

Here are a few of the people who have enjoyed Home Team, and I thank them.

- Live Your Life, Buy The Book
- Gay List Book Reviews
- 3 Chicks After Dark
- Joyfully Jay
- The Novel Approach
- Reviews by Jessewave

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