The Secrets Issue 136: Serendipity

I just released the most recent issue of my newsletter, The Secrets. This issue is titled Serendipity. In it I go through the thought processes that shaped my recent story Chance Corrigan and The Tick-tock King of the Nile. (It will be coming out some time this year from DAW—I’ll post on its availability when I get the information.) This issue pretty much works as a “making of” reel for the story, but includes some commentary about how this sort of story-creation process works into the world of digital publishing and career building.

That issue is part of the current subscription. Click on the image or link above and you’ll be taken to my store. The Secrets costs $25 for 25 issues. The content is exactly the sort of material which will speed your development as a writer.

In the current series we have the following issues:

Issue 126: Lessons from Rowling—A look at what can be learned about storytelling from the Harry Potter saga.

Issue 127: Angles—A breakdown of how I constructed the story By Our Actions, which goes on sale next month in the anthology Timeshares.

Issue 128: First Novel Problems—I go through a recent fantasy novel, breaking out a number of problems and suggesting very simple solutions so you don’t get caught doing the same things.

Issue 129: Writing for Women—An analysis of a book in the Twilight series provides some insight into how to mix emotions into genres that usually aren’t that much concerned with them.

Issue 130: You Are Your Brand—A basic look at the need for establishing yourself and the tools with which you can do it in the digital age.

Issue 131: Enduring Appeal—An examination of those common elements that make a story immortal, and how to use them to your benefit.

Issue 132: Triad Plotting—A new approach to story plotting which puts emotional, intellectual and action-oriented content in opposition to each other, creating dynamic stories with broad appeal.

Issue 133: Likable Folks—This issue delves into a myriad of techniques and elements which will create characters that readers will like and with whom they will identify. Because the art of characterization is key to having a career, this is an especially valuable issue.

Issue 134: Fiction in Bytes—A timely look at ebooks, the growth of the market, and the pitfalls facing the unwary author.

Issue 135: Cloud Creation—A further examination of how writing will change in the digital age, and how authors can use this new freedom to create properties that will attract readers.

Issue 136: Serendipity—This is the issue mentioned above, looking at the creation of the story and what it portends for the future.

My goal with The Secrets is to equip authors with the sort of useful information they need to be able to cope with the challenges of publishing today, and profit in the time to come. Especially now, in a time of change, you’ll hear a lot of authors lament the fact that they’re not making money. It’s not because they can’t write; it’s because the collapse of the old model requires new skills and new deployment of old skills. The Secrets provides solid information by an author who is making money in today’s environment. The Secrets will make you a better writer and help you build your career. And if that’s not the best bargain you’re going to get for $25, you sure don’t need advice from me on how to make money in a time of turmoil.

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2 Responses to “The Secrets Issue 136: Serendipity”

  1. Greetings Mr. Stackpole,

    I am interesting in your secrets newsletter but I am curious about where to start. Can I just start by picking up the current issue or should I look at buying the back issues first?

  2. You can easily start with the current subscription, then explore buying back issues. I also have some stand-alone publications which a lot of folks pick up. Each issue of The Secrets is self-contained or, in the case of a couple series, complete within a single volume.