Simon Wood

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With Christmas coming up, if you’re looking to buy one of my books, I’ve got you covered. There’s 20% off all my titles at my website when you use the code “SANTA20.” Just go to Books – Simon Wood to see what books you’re missing from your Simon Wood collection.  I’m happy to sign a book to you or to a loved one if you’re giving the gift of me this holiday season. 😊

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My ever-popular online workshop on PLOT THICKENERS writing starts on July 11th. This workshop blossomed out of a piece I wrote for Writers’ Digest and there’s now interest for me to develop into a book. So if you want to learn how to inject some drama and conflict into your fiction, here’s what to expect from the workshop and you can sign up here:

Plotting out your novel before you begin is a great exercise. Your story is thought through with no bad logic or unnecessary scenes. This process doesn’t have to be some drawn out and creativity killing affair. I’ll teach you some fast & effective techniques for plotting a novel from beginning to end. Don’t run out of ideas or pad out your novel again. The presentation includes my famous color-coded plotting spreadsheet.

Plotting shouldn’t be viewed as a passion killer that destroys any chance of spontaneity and creativity. Plotting is a very creative process. You’re creating the whole story in short form, providing a skeleton framework that will have the flesh put on during the writing. What can be more motivating than when you have a complete outline for your novel to guide you from “once upon a time…” to “…and they lived happily ever after”? And what can be more demotivating than coming to a grinding halt on a manuscript 30,000 words shy of your target with nothing left to say?

There’s a lot to be said for plotting and why it is a great help to the writing process. With this workshop, students will develop the skills for producing well thought out plotlines and use my outlining style sheet for creating simple “at a glance” outlines.

Lesson Plan:

  • Lesson #1: The importance of plotting and outlining
  • Lesson #2: Breaking down the story
  • Lesson #3: Identifying the pieces
  • Lesson #4: Arranging the pieces
  • Lesson #5: Maintaining consistency of character and voice
  • Lesson #6: Reviewing the outline

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This is another of my custom bike builds. I converted a Cannondale Mountain bike into a drop bar gravel bike. I wasn’t sure if it would work but it rides very nicely. The pictures represent where I started and where I finished.

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I have a new writer’s workshop starting in June. It came at the suggestion of one of my previous workshop students and I’ve been working on it for the last few months.  The new workshop is QUERY LETTERS, SYNOPSIS WRITING AND PITCHING.  The workshop would explore the following:

  • Crafting a query letter directed at agents and publishers and how to perform a coordinated agent/publisher search.
  • Writing synopses. Yes, I said “synopses.” Multiple synopses are needed for book title because you’ll need a 200-word synopsis, 1-page synopsis, 2-page synopsis and a 4-page synopsis. There’s no such thing as a standard synopsis length…sadly.
  • There are plenty of opportunities to pitch face-to-face with industry professionals—both formally and informally—so it pays to have your elevator pitch in your back pocket ready to pull out at a moment’s notice.

So if you want to learn how to interact with the industry and present your story concept effectively, you can sign up here:

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What do you do when you’re injured and can’t ride…build a bike! This is a 2009 Trek Alpha 2.3 built from a secondhand bike frameset, spares, used parts and new parts.

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With much regret, I feel Charles Dickens’ words need a little editing/updating for the times we live in…

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of light, it was the season of darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair.”

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I’ve scheduled my writing workshops for the first half of 2022 and they are as follows:

  • PLOT THICKENERS (Starts March 7th)
  • SHIFTING POVs (Starts April 4th)
  • KILLER SUSPENSE (Starts May 2nd)
  • QUERY LETTERS & SYNOPSIS WRITING (Starts June 6thNEW!
  • SHORT STORIES (Starts July 11th)
  • AUTHOR PROFESSIONALISM (Starts August 8th)

As you can see, my new workshop on query letters and synopsis writing is set.  Thanks to everyone who contacted me after my last newsletter.

Course and signup details can be found here.

 

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Life has taken me offline for the foreseeable future. Last weekend, a truck and horse trailer crashed into me while riding my bike. My bike was totaled (and is in pieces) and I have a separated shoulder. Luckily, I landed in a dirt drainage ditch which minimized the injuries. I’m all braced up to keep my arm immobile. I have set up for voice to text so I won’t be entirely unable to work.

Anyway, here’s to a speedy recovery.

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It’s that time of year, so if you’re looking to give a book for Christmas and you’re going to make it one of mine, bless your heart. If you want to get a book autographed or personalized to that special someone (even if that special someone is you) go to my bookshop. Used the code HOLIDAY10 to get a 10% discount.

Alternatively, I can mail out a bookplate or sign ebooks via Authorgraph.com. Just email me with your requests and I’ll do my best to make it happen. All the details are on the bookshop.

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I like to challenge myself to do something I’ve never done before. As an avid cyclist, I decided to see if I could build a bike from scratch. It took a while to pull all the pieces together after finding a suitable bike frame to use as a starting point. I had to improvise in a few places due to trying to upgrade an older bike with modern-ish componentry. I also did a lot of web surfing to find components during the pandemic. I also had to learn a few new skills…which included and we not limited to paint spraying. I gave the bike a custom paint job. The color is “peacock” because it’s a color-shift paint job and changes from blue to green to purple depending on the light.

All in all, it came out pretty well and bike while no superbike rides amazingly well. Anyway, here are some pix from my starting point to finished product. I hope you like the results because I do. 🙂

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