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Acts Of Desperation

Posted by on Feb 26, 2009

Some of you know that I’m a dreamer inside. One of my dreams is to write a book of fiction. Nonfiction is my strong point, but for years I’ve been working on a detective story here and there, when I have the time and the mindset to try to do it right. I belong to a writer’s group, where we meet once a month and share examples of our writing. Last night, for the first time in probably a year, I got to read a chapter of my book to the group, and,… well, let’s just say that as a television script it might make it, but as a book it needs some work.

One thing all writers look for are readers in some fashion. For instance, on this blog, I wanted people to read, or consume what I’ve written, so much that I added the Odiogo plugin so people could listen to my submissions here. It’s too bad it didn’t go backwards, but, hey, it’s free.

Now, this is where a good idea comes into play. I have a friend named Tim Dodge, one of my Writer’s Group cohabitants, who’s written a goodly number of things. One of his latest projects is a book called Acts Of Desperation. I have read the story and loved it, and I gave him my critique of it back in the summer. At this point, he’s doing lots of editing, but at the same time he’s decided to share his story chapter by chapter, and he’s doing it through a website he created called Acts Of Desperation; makes sense, right?

What he’s doing is very creative. As he edits a new chapter, he creates it in a pdf format for people to download and read, but he also records it as a podcast so people can listen to it if that’s what they prefer. By doing it his way, and knowing that there are people following the story and his progress with it, he makes sure to keep on some kind of legitimate pace to make sure he can keep the readers happy. I know I wouldn’t like it if I read chapter 7 then had to wait 9 months for the next one.

Anyway, take a look at it and think about reading or listening to his story as he adds more and more to it. This is a great idea, and it’s something I might think about myself one day, if I actually finish my story first. He’s also on both Twitter and Facebook (has a fan page on Facebook), where he can alert people when he’s got something new up on the site.

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Nikki Wadley:

Interesting concept! I like it. It’s just not for me; nothing like having a good book to hold on to. The podcast idea is one I would consider.

February 26th, 2009 | 2:47 PM

It is an interesting concept. I go both ways in this regard, but when I read the original story, it was all in print.

February 26th, 2009 | 3:03 PM
Taris Janitens:

I’ll take a look at this if I get a chance – in the mean time good luck with your own book – thats a great task and I’d be interested to read it when its done 🙂

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February 26th, 2009 | 3:40 PM

[Still listening to Il Divo!……]

Mitch, all my life I have been a writer and all my life I have read only non-fiction.

My favorite writer is Ann Rule – foremost true crime writer in the US with MANY best sellers under her belt. (Rule worked as a crisis councellor in the cubicle next to Jeffrey Dahmer – THAT must have been scary!!! – and wrote his story called The Stranger Beside Me).

I have one degree of separation to Ann Rule, being as she and I have a mutual friend who is the retired Chief of Police in Garden Grove (where Rule sourced much information on another case… the book that became: Never Let Me Go).

I believe that writers learn much from each other and if you are writing a detective story, you might like to contact Ann Rule? I have her address, because every book of hers that I buy (in hard cover), I mail to her… she author signs and mails it back to me.

Ann Rule is not just an author – she is a mega-author, who works alongside police to gather forensic information and adds her effort to investigations. Still, she is not above communicating with and assisting the likes of you and me.

I know…. I still have to answer your question about the Realtors Blogging, but I have been busy. If contacting Ann Rule interests you, let me know – I can tackle all requests at the same time. LOL

Great blog and as always I enjoy reading whatever you write. One day, I’ll be able to say “I knew Mr. Mitchell back when he still spoke to people like me – before he was famous!”

February 26th, 2009 | 11:30 PM

Hey Althea, thanks for the offer. I might take you up on it one of these days, but right now, working on my fiction is way in the background of things I need to be doing.

February 27th, 2009 | 1:14 PM

I think its a great idea,going to download the 9 episodes and have a read this weekend. It took me a while to find the site as I tried searching for actsofdesperation with .com, .net etc rather than just typing the name into google DOH! maybe a good idea to put a link to

February 27th, 2009 | 3:01 AM

Of course, Khaled, you could have just clicked on the link in my article, as his domain name, as you’ve found out, isn’t Acts Of Desperation. Or maybe you don’t know, but when you see the highlighted burgundy color, those are links to other places.

February 27th, 2009 | 1:15 PM
Boyz II Men:

Hey Mitch,
As you know, I love to write as well so you’ve hit a chord here with me! You sound like you’re having a common problem in writing when it comes to finishing your book. I’ll have to find the essay on it, but I read a great piece once that was basically called “overcoming the hump.” The idea was that it’s easy to write until about 100 pages in when you start to lose your focus and become overwhelmed in the task of trying to tackle such a long piece of writing.
Regardless, you’re off to a great start by working in writing groups! The Acts of Desperation online is a wonderful idea as it ensures that you will have a writing group, even if you can’t find other writers to collaborate with. The only thing that I’d be worried about is that it doesn’t violate any publishing deal with whatever publisher he’s hoping to run the book through.

February 27th, 2009 | 9:42 AM

I don’t think Tim is worried about anything like that, as he has other books in his repertoire. The idea might be to generate buzz with one book, and then have something to take to a publisher and say “see, this one got lots of attention, and I have plenty more”.

February 27th, 2009 | 1:16 PM
SEO Blog:

Thanks Mitch and reading the post made me realized that I am not good writer, may be I should take a writing course or join writer’s group like you to improve my writing skill.

February 27th, 2009 | 2:52 PM