Writing update for the week of 9/12/16

Hey guys!

Hope everyone is doing well! Wanted to update you with where I was on several writing projects, especially since it’s been forever since I put up a post. And since I get pretty regular emails from folks asking for updates on my books and release dates.

So, I’ll tackle them in the following order: Nick Woods 4, Detective Danny Acuff 6, Little Man 2, and two new projects none of you know about. : )

Nick Woods 4

The Nick Woods 4 book is fully written and in edit mode. I’m hearing it’s pretty good from my absolute toughest critic (my wife!), and she’s currently helping me flesh out some characters.

As my close friends know, I’m a plot guy. Action. Gun fights. Etc. Danah is more a character person. Why did this character do this? Let’s make this scene funnier. Let’s amp up this argument. Etc.

Without question, this book will be done by Oct. 15. That’s the deadline for when Audible is expecting it and:

A ) We’ve already pushed back the date once.

B ) We’ve already “cashed the check!” D’oh! lol. (Okay, it was direct deposit, but doesn’t “cash the check” sound so much better?!)

Bottom line, Nick Woods 4 drops Oct. 15 unless the Marine Corps calls me back into service.

Admin note: If you haven’t started the series, begin here with Book 1, Sold Out. And if you’re not aware there’s a Book 2, Mexican Heat, and Book 3, Afghan Storm, then you seriously need to subscribe for blog updates and keep up better. If Nick knew you weren’t paying attention, he’d knock you upside the head.

Detective Danny Acuff 6

I had pledged to stay on the Detective Danny Acuff series with greater focus, getting you all the sixth book much faster than I have with earlier editions. And that was certainly my intention.

But I wanted Book 6 to have a hand-to-hand showdown between Danny and Forrest Holding, the prior Green Beret Sergeant Major.

As readers of the series know, there was a multi-chapter hand-to-hand scene between Danny and four brutes in Book 5. I wanted something similar in Book 6, but instead have the fight between Danny and the bear-like Forrest. But how do you get two men who would ALWAYS typically be toting pistols into a hand-to-hand situation, where they slug it out until only one is standing?

That’s what held me up for several weeks. I emailed friends. I called old gun-toting Marines who have helped me in the past. I knew I needed to get the book out, but I didn’t want to let go of what could be a pivotal, incredible scene.

It took me nearly forever, but I’ve finally worked it out, even though it led to a much greater delay than I would have preferred.

Regardless, I’ll get that to you guys as quickly as I can.

Admin notes: If you haven’t jumped on board the series, you can begin with Books 1-3 here. And here are the links to Book 4 and Book 5 in case you missed them.

Little Man 2

I had hoped to have Little Man 2 written by now, but I got 10,000 words into it and wrote myself into a corner. I’m not an outliner (nor is Stephen King, George R. R. Martin, or about a dozen others), so don’t judge me.

Regardless, I had to come up with a different idea for the villian since I came to realize my original plot just wasn’t exciting and epic enough. I’ve since been lucky enough to come up with an incredible idea that’s beyond ambitious and should have people talking about this book when I finish it. Give me a couple months or so and it’ll be done.

Admin note: If you haven’t read book 1, you’re missing out on a pretty good book. SOME say it’s my best ever. Just try the sample on Amazon. I dare you.

New project 1

I’m a huge fan of Game of Thrones, the TV and book sensation written by George R. R. Martin. I was recently re-reading the series (I’m always re-reading books and studying them) and decided to finally pursue a small nagging thought that had been bugging me for years.

Namely, I’m going to write an epic fantasy. Swordfights. Charging warhorses. Kings in castles.

I have no idea how it’ll do, but I’ve come up with an incredible premise: what if a young man from a poor district decided NOT to do what he was supposed to do, which in this case is become a blacksmith; what if he wanted to carry a sword and see the world? How long would he live? How would all this change him? How far could he go?

I’ve already begun work on this and will be releasing it in serial installments. There’s a couple reasons for doing so: One, I don’t want to spend five years on something that might completely flop. Two, it’s far less audacious to write sixty or eighty pages at a time than write eight hundred, especially when you have to keep several other series going that currently pay the bills.

One lesson I’ve learned with serials is I’m done with cliffhangers. Each serial from here on out with no longer have some massive, leave-you-hanging ending. Those seem to work on TV and Netflix, but they don’t seem to translate as well to books.

So Book 1 will be his leaving from home and landing as a foot soldier. I’m honestly pretty excited about this project and get a little nervous about how epic it could be.

New project 2

This is a total “me” project. It will probably totally flop, but sometimes we have to write for ourselves (same as new project 1). 

This is about a Shaolin Monk who comes to America. It’ll be about an American who leaves the United States to get away from the busyness of our culture and a nasty divorce and business bankruptcy.

Just as the man finds peace and his place in the world in China, his master asks him to come to America. With no money. No destination. No goal except to go into the poorest, most dangerous areas and help those in need while spreading light and goodness.

This project will be somewhat similar to the TV Kung Fu series with David Carradine (Kwai Chang Caine).

I seriously have ZERO expectations about this project, but I’ll be releasing it in serial form (without cliffhangers) as well.

A parting gift

And for those amazing supporters who read down this far, I’m leaving you with a pretty amazing gift. This video completely blew me away. Be prepared to laugh is all I can say. (Hat tip, Kristina.)

Keep the faith,

Stan R. Mitchell

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Stan R. Mitchell, author and prior Marine, is best known for his Nick Woods Marine Sniper series, which has remained in the Top 100 on Amazon for more than three years. The series has also been picked up by Audible.com for a multi-book audio deal. Additional works include a Western thriller, detective series, and World War II story.

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Update on the former colonel in memory care

Hey guys!

Wanted to update everyone on the post from yesterday.

I’m so happy that more than twenty of you left touching, amazing comments from him in just a matter or hours, and I heard back from the daughter after the outpouring from everyone. She wanted me to share this message with everyone:

If you have a chance please pass this along on your blog. Not kidding, he literally broke down crying while listening to the comments. Showed him a goofy pic of the latest great grandbaby and he started laughing. 20160817_142610

Mom thought this was such a wonderful thing for you to do for Dad. She got quite a laugh from your wife’s comments, having been a Marine wife herself for 27 years. Dad did as well!

I was halfway through the 4th comment when he got “something” in his eye (actually a lot of somethings) and I had to pause reading them until the next visit. He did better than I did as I only made it through #2 before the waterworks started. He was touched so very deeply by this outpouring of respect and blessings. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart.

And thank you, sir, for taking time to do this and for reaching out to your most amazing group of readers.

All the best from my family to yours, Sandy

Thanks to all of you for helping me make this man’s day. And if you wanted to see all the awesome comments or add your own, go here: Please leave a message for this veteran (a former colonel) in memory care. I told Sandy that comments usually filter for up to two or three days afterward.

She will definitely be checking back, so there’s still time if you want to make a comment.

Thanks again, everyone!! You all rock!

Keep the faith,

Stan R. Mitchell

P.S. Sandy mentioned what amazing followers I have and I sent her this reply: “I’m super blessed and fortunate to have so many people supporting my author dream! And they are awesome people! I think it’s also because I’ve kept the site a safe place. When stupid commenters show up, I ask them to get in line or just delete them out. So, that’s allowed for some great conversations on everything from politics to whatever. No trolling allowed! 😁”

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Stan R. Mitchell, author and prior Marine, is best known for his Nick Woods Marine Sniper series, which has remained in the Top 100 on Amazon for more than three years. The series has also been picked up by Audible.com for a multi-book audio deal. Additional works include a Western thriller, detective series, and World War II story.

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Please leave a message for this veteran (a former colonel) in memory care

Hey guys!

I wanted to share a story that touched me and end this post by asking you (no, begging you!!) to drop a comment, thanking this veteran as well.

The story begins by me crossing paths with Sandy Schumacher on Twitter. I didn’t know her and can’t even remember how we crossed paths. She was simply just another reader on just another day. Or so I thought.

But somehow we got to messaging each other and I learned she was a retired cop. That caught my attention and led to additional messages where I soon learned that her Dad was a prior Marine, which clearly got my attention.

She told me he was 91 and in Memory Care now but still doesn’t cut the staff any slack. I laughed about the latter part and we talked more, with me asking more questions about him. From that, I soon learned he retired as a full bird colonel, having served from 1943-1976. His time included combat service in Korea.

Colonel George Robert Scharnberg

At that, I told her that she had to tell the man the next time she saw him that a lowly sergeant from Alpha Company, 1st Battalion, 8th Marines sends his regards and that I wanted him to know that I had the highest level of respect for him.

She told me she’d do that and that she knew he’d like hearing such a thing from another Marine of a different generation. And that’s when I got this incredible picture back from him, which completely blew me away.

Sandy told me that her dad said, “Back at ya!”

My reply to her was a little embarrassing, but completely honest. I simply said, “Oh, my word, what an amazing photo!!!! You have no idea how much this made my day!!”

I can’t really explain how that made me feel. It did more than make my day. It warmed my heart that he’d even acknowledge my service, which was nothing compared to his. In all honesty, I don’t think I’ve felt that honored in a long time. Not even close.

George Robert Scharnberg serving in Korea as a captain.

I mean, to have a full colonel salute back… A man who served in Korea. A man who distinguished himself enough to reach such a rank — No small accomplishment, by any stretch of the imagination.

Sandy told me that her dad’s head nurse was an Army medic and that he made her dad practice his salutes! There is just something so touching about that for me. One veteran serving a man who had served him years earlier.

At any rate, I will try to end this here because I know all of you are so busy, but I beg of you to do me one thing: please leave a comment below for this man, who’s named Colonel George Robert Scharnberg.

Sandy told me she’d pass the messages along to him during her next visit (when I asked if I could write this post). She also said she was confident it would make his day.Col GRS

So this is what I’m asking. Let’s get her dad a ton of comments. I’m sure it would be really moving for him. I’m sure it would be moving for others, as well.

For those who don’t know, the Korean War was often called The Forgotten War. It received very little public attention, so most of those who served were never rightfully honored.

If you have something touching to add, such as a family member who served in Korea or World War II, or even Vietnam or any other time period, please put that in your comment as well. I’m sure he’d love to hear such specific details.

Just anything you’d like to say to a man who saw too many men die in Korea and who gave this country thirty years of his life.

That’s it. Please. I beg of you. Share a few words with this man and maybe share the message or ask a friend to drop a comment, too. I’d love it if we blew Mr. Scharnberg away with how many comments get dropped. (I also know loads of other veterans will see the comments to him and also be warmed in the process.)

There’s so much pain in the world and we can’t do something about everything, but I think this is a really small way you can touch this man’s life. As well as the Army medic still standing post. (And if you have no idea what to say at all, just thank him for his service and put your name. Or only your first name if you don’t feel comfortable sharing your full name.)

Keep the faith,

Stan R. Mitchell

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Stan R. Mitchell, author and prior Marine, is best known for his Nick Woods Marine Sniper series, which has remained in the Top 100 on Amazon for more than three years. The series has also been picked up by Audible.com for a multi-book audio deal. Additional works include a Western thriller, detective series, and World War II story.

 

 

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Detective Danny Acuff 5 released!

Hey guys!

Hope everyone is having a great start to their weekend! Just wanted to let everyone know that I’ve finished Detective Danny Acuff 5 and it’s now available for purchase.

Detective Danny Acuff 5 UnflattenedI’ve had two people already read Danny Acuff 5 and tell me it’s the best one yet. It’s faster paced and there’s more action in it than previous editions (can you say multi-chapter, hand-to-hand fight scene between Danny and four guys?!).

I hate that I got off schedule and had such a gap between the release of Danny Acuff 4 and 5. The writing of Nick Woods 4 just proved more difficult and time consuming than I expected.

Regardless, I’m wanting to stay more on track with the remainder of the Danny Acuff series. I love writing them and I enjoy writing about my local area (though the town is invented).

Detective Danny Acuff 1-3I also recently began offering the first three Danny Acuff books for free (electronic version, obviously) for new subscribers to my mailing list. SOOOO, if you haven’t jumped on the Danny Acuff train and would like to, simply send me an email at the following address. I’ll send you the electronic file and get you well onto your way.

That’s it from here! Thanks, as always, for all the shares on Facebook and the reviews that everyone has placed on Amazon and Goodreads!

Hope you enjoy!

Keep the faith,

Stan R. Mitchell

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Stan R. Mitchell, author and prior Marine, is best known for his Nick Woods Marine Sniper series, which has remained in the Top 100 on Amazon for more than three years. The series has also been picked up by Audible.com for a multi-book audio deal. Additional works include a Western thriller, detective series, and World War II story.

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Three tips on how to deal with extreme stress from an upcoming event.

Hey guys!

Hope everyone is doing well! Wanted to share a quick video I posted on YouTube.

Hope you enjoy!

Keep the faith,

Stan R. Mitchell

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Stan R. Mitchell, author and prior Marine, is best known for his Nick Woods Marine Sniper series, which has remained in the Top 100 on Amazon for more than three years. The series has also been picked up by Audible.com for a multi-book audio deal. Additional works include a Western thriller, detective series, and World War II story.

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5 ways to build your personal magnetism

Hey guys!

There are quite a few great jewels in this article! 5 ways to build your personal magnetism.

I think you’ll really enjoy it. Here was just one graph I really appreciated:

“People who have personal magnetism must be cheerful. They talk about glad tidings, not calamity. They encourage others, never emphasize discouragement. No matter what obstacles they realize are ahead, they talk and act success, not failure. Others feel better after a few minutes with such people.”

Do yourself the favor or spending three or four minutes reading the article! I think it’ll be good for you and help you make that next minor improvement we’re always trying to make.

Keep the faith,

Stan R. Mitchell

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Stan R. Mitchell, author and prior Marine, is best known for his Nick Woods Marine Sniper series, which has remained in the Top 100 on Amazon for more than three years. The series has also been picked up by Audible.com for a multi-book audio deal. Additional works include a Western thriller, detective series, and World War II story.

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Nick Woods, Book 4 is done! Now in editing and polishing phase.

Hey guys!

Hope everyone is doing well! I wanted to let everyone know that I finally finished the fourth Nick Woods book! (Working title: Nigerian Fire.)

I can’t tell you how difficult this one has been to write, and I think it was mostly due to internal anxiety I was placing on myself. The Nick Woods series has been selling so well that I’ve felt pressure to both finish the next one quickly (before everyone loses interest) and not write a dud, which would kill the series and certainly jeopardize my full-time writing career. (The Nick Woods series is probably 85 percent of my revenue.)

As my close friends know, I’ve been far more at ease writing the Detective Danny Acuff books the past eight months. They require far less research and I’m not scrambling trying to find a suitable foreign country to study, from which Nick Woods and his merry band of shooters can go hunting.

Nonetheless, I’ve finally managed to finish the fourth book in the Nick Woods series. I’m pretty pumped about it and feel like it’s one of the fastest moving books in the series to date.

For now though, it’s editing and polishing time, followed by some more editing and polishing. This is the part I struggle to enjoy, same as most writers I know. Once you’ve climbed the mountain and finished one, you just want it to be over so you can start another book.

But it’s the editing and polishing that takes a decent story and turns it into something that’s captivating, so Danah and I plan to really make this one sing. (In Book 3, we faced a production deadline because of our audio deal. Thankfully, we don’t have a pending deadline with this book, so the stress won’t be as high.)

At any rate, I’m rambling now, and droning on about small details that I’m certain you don’t care about. I’m also pretty sure most of you would rather me get back to editing so I can get it to you sooner.

Fair enough. : )

Thanks so much everyone for being such huge friends, fans, and supporters! Keep spreading the word about Nick Woods and I’ll work as hard as I can to get the fourth book in your hands quickly!

Here’s the book order for any of you that might have missed some of them, or to jog your memory as you’re spreading the word:

Sold Out_Cover

Cover_Mexican Heat - Small

AfghanStorm_Cover

Keep the faith,

Stan R. Mitchell

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Stan R. Mitchell, author and prior Marine, is best known for his Nick Woods Marine Sniper series, which has remained in the Top 100 on Amazon for more than three years. The series has also been picked up by Audible.com for a multi-book audio deal. Additional works include a Western thriller, detective series, and World War II story.

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Filed under News about my books, Nick Woods