Advice From Professionals
Advice From Wrestlers and Comic Book Men
Dark Horse Comics
Met at Fantasy Factory
Downtown Dalton, Georgia
FREE COMIC BOOK DAY SATURDAY MAY 4, 2013
I sat down with Dan Jolley on the above Free Comic Book Day above at the location above here in my town of Dalton, GA.
I contacted Mr. Jolley online then arranged to sit down and talk to him and talk Simply Priceless with him. I completely botched the meeting I was so nervous. I don’t know if he could tell but in my opinion, I could tell.
He told me though that he wasn’t currently into the novel writing part of creative work, and instructed me to make sure that my work was very polished, and the grammar would be up to par. Mr. Jolley instructed me to make sure that Simply Priceless was well polished, and said for me to hire a freelance editor if need be!
Dan said he had a friend who was a freelance editor but he didn’t know how much the guy would charge me to edit Simply Priceless? I never got an answer back on that one but I did soak in what Dan Jolley told me, and I took it to heart!
I finally was able to give Dan his own signed copy of Simply Priceless at Next Chapter Con 2021
Nigel McGuiness FORMER TNA WRESTLING SUPERSTAR Desmond Wolfe and myself
May 2014 Knoxville Tennessee Fan Boy Expo
Knoxville Convention Center
May 31, 2014
February 12, 2015, I received a reply to the Facebook message that I responded Mr. McGuiness’s Tweet which directed me to contact him on Facebook after I initially contacted him on Twitter, to begin with.
In my lengthy Message to Mr. McGuiness, I included the synopsis of Roadie.
“Roadie” is all about following your dreams and shows in life anything can and probably will happen. Have you ever fantasized about any celebrity regardless of their line of work? Luke Turner did. Roadie is one big fantasy turned reality. It all starts with some major bad luck. Which led Luke to apply for his dream job and meet the woman he idolized. A journey quickly began unlike any other. Roadie is a story about life, love, friendship, and all the struggles in between. It follows Luke Turner on his quest to find true happiness. Is there such a thing?
The Facebook message declared that Nigel didn’t have time to read Roadie or to be able to do any type of review with it at this time. I guess he was busy with the professional wrestling promotion he is with currently: Ring of Honor! He told me the same thing that Dan Jolley told me about grammar, and gave me the instruction to take my synopsis for Roadie, and write it over in one sentence, one paragraph, and one page. Mr. McGuiness told me to also read some books on writing.
The grammar deal hit home with the Former TNA Superstar Desmond Wolfe! I want to make it as an accomplished author, and I know I need help with my grammar! I am going to work at it though so I can make it to the top!
Mick Foley & I January 7, 2011
2011 World of Wheels
Marriott Downtown Chattanooga, Tennessee
Mick Foley Wrestling Superstar/Best Selling Author/Stand Up Comedian
Finally, in 2011 I met Mick Foley at the event above. I was able to talk to him briefly about writing as I stood in line getting my autograph. He told me to not get discouraged over not moving forward in a successful writing career because people aren’t reading as much as they used to.
He also commented on the tidbit of a Roadie synopsis that I told him about. He said, “Let me guess you are the male wrestling fan.”
Mick and I didn’t have much time to talk but I took in the wisdom he gave me during those few minutes, and in totality, I have continued to add all the other professional’s advice and comments to them. I expressed my appreciation to Nigel about him taking the time to contact me back, and I plan on utilizing all this information, and any other I get to move myself into a successful writing career!
Kenyon T, Henry
Gave me the advice to put the title of Halloween Havoc: Simply Priceless 2 on the cover of SP2 and he gave me the advice to re-edit Simply Priceless when I spoke to him at Battleground’s Carpet Capital Comic Con in October 2018
Advice From My College Writing Professor
First of all, pouring out your ideas as a writer means you are subjecting yourself to criticism from anyone asked or assigned to give his or opinion. Often you won’t like what you hear. And, yes, writing and reading are very subjective activities: There are many ways to write and many ideas about what works when putting stories together. Obviously the publishing business is like TV, the movie industry and building cars: If people like something, everyone else tries to copy it. If other people like reading something, some people think they’re supposed to like it, too, while others try that much harder not to like it.
Some people will like your stories; some people will hate them; for many there will be likes and dislikes about your approach and/or your details. You have to develop a thick skin when it comes to being critiqued, but you also need to look objectively at any criticisms that are made and see if there’s anything valid about them. If there is, then try to learn from it even if you hate hearing it. On the other hand, if you HONESTLY can say the person’s point has no value, then don’t worry about it: Some people seem to live to tear down others. To say an excerpt of a book or a story sounds like a movie, for instance, doesn’t provide anything constructive; to say something doesn’t ring true — that it doesn’t seem realistic or believable — can be helpful. In the case of one point you bring up, to say going back and forth between calling your heroine “Simply Priceless” and “Ashley” is confusing or irritating may have some validity. I understand that people don’t want to hear the same name over and over, but “she” and “her” work fine. I would say call her “Ashley” when she’s not being a superhero but “Simply Priceless” or “Priceless” when she’s in her super mode. That would help the reader (not seeing the character on a screen) keep up with which identity she’s in at a given time. Of course there are some times when she’s kind of both at the same time; you just have to use your judgment on what to call her then.
Personally, I admire your imaginative creativity and your ability to organize and sustain a plot line for a whole book or series of books. The undisciplined grammar bothers me, however. I work full-time as an editor, so seeing incorrect usage or spelling or improper punctuation gets in the way of my reading enjoyment. The fact is, I get irritated seeing a billboard or other advertisement using apostrophes improperly or not using plurals correctly. And you need to keep working to tighten up your writing, to use as few words as possible to give your descriptions or move the story along. That’s just an ongoing process all writers should strive for. Your work often has the feeling of just what you describe — you writing for 10-plus hours at a time getting your ideas out of your system and on paper. But you clearly don’t have as much enthusiasm or energy for going back and self-editing, sharpening and cleaning up some untidy areas. That’s not something to look at as a failure: You’re an inventor, not a mechanic. If you’re serious about making your writing a career and not a hobby, however, you’ll either need to become more of a mechanic after the invention stage or you’ll need to find a mechanic to work with — someone who can do that tedious editing work and give you honest feedback about the ideas without trying to restrict the idea process.
I hope this helps.