The Over 50 Writer

GETTING PAST THE OVERWHELMING by Craig Hastings
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 by Patti Shene

FEATURED BOOK:  Moose Ridge: Ending to Beginning

AUTHOR:  Craig Hastings

PUBLISHER:  Champagne Book Group

GENRE:  Inspirational Fiction/Romance

SERIES OR STAND ALONE:  First in the Moose Ridge series

TARGET AGE:  Adult

 

 

 

IT IS MY PLEASURE TO WELCOME AUTHOR CRAIG HASTINGS TO THE OVER 50 WRITER. CRAIG SHARES INSIGHT INTO HOW TO APPROACH WRITING EVEN WHEN WE GET STARTED LATE IN LIFE.

 

 

 

CRAIG IS OFFERING A GIVEAWAY! SIMPLY LEAVE A COMMENT BELOW TO ENTER THE DRAWING FOR A PRINT OR EBOOK COPY OF MOOSE RIDGE: ENDING TO BEGINNING.

 

 

 

 

GETTING PAST THE OVERWHELMING

 

 

 

by

 

 

 

Craig Hastings

 

 

 

Sitting with a blank page in front of you waiting for your pearls of wisdom can be a daunting task. But doing it for the first time while in your 50s or older can add multiple levels of difficulty. Then the idea of trying to get your writing traditionally published can make it seem like a truly frightening ordeal.

 

 

 

I’ve been an avid reader for most of my 65 years. I’ve also been an avid story teller. Just ask my sisters. Some true, some, well, you get the idea. I have had several favorite authors over the years and a few whose books I’ve read multiple times. But writing is probably the furthest thing from my skill set. With over 40 years in the IT (computer geek) world, most of my writing was technical, or in languages most can’t and never will care to read.

 

 

 

While I read, I’d find spots where I felt something was missing, wasn’t explained well, too obvious, or just out-n-out wrong. This started me thinking about how I would handle these, which brought an idea for a book to take residence in my mind. The basic idea remained for longer than I’ll admit and I would tweak it as current events came about. I even typed out several paragraphs a few times, but never took it further. For one thing, I wasn’t sure how to move forward. I had read and heard about many methods used by writers. From basic or full outlining, defining chapters, character development and background, to name a few. Also, spelling and grammar are not known for being computer programmer’s strong points. There’s a reason spellcheck was one of the first free programs available.

 

 

 

Then I found what works for me. It was like how I approach programming and design. The simple tool I call ‘What if?’ Meaning I would start with a, what if, or what would, type question, and go from there. My first book, a thriller, started with the question, ‘what would it take for someone to go back to a place where he almost died twice before?’ While working on this book, the thought ‘What would happen when someone who never heard about God, and was about to give up, found they were surrounded by folks, who had their own devastating events, but kept a strong Christian faith?’ came to me and led to my first published book.

 

 

 

Now I’m not saying that once an idea comes to you, everything else is smooth sailing. It’s not. But what I am saying is you have to go with what works for you. In the years I’ve been writing, I’ve come across as many methods of writing as I have writers. Some only differ slightly, and others are drastically different. But if it works, why question it.

 

 

 

The other tactic I brought from my programming experience is to break any project down to manageable tasks, and concentrate on the task needing completed first. Face it, if you haven’t completed the book, you don’t need a query letter. Also, you can’t edit what you haven’t written. In the fiction arena, no agent or publisher wants to hear about a book you’re planning on writing. So, step one is writing the book and let the other tasks take the backseat, or better yet, ride in the trunk. You don’t need the distraction.

 

 

 

So, I say, sit down at whatever setting works for you, be it computer, typewriter, or even pad & pencil, and write. Will your first draft be perfect? No. Does it need to be? No. Will there be spelling and grammatical errors? Yes. Does this matter? No.

 

 

 

But what about your age? You ask. First, think of this, who has more life experiences? Who has seen the trials that life brings? Who has watched their friends, co-workers, neighbors, or family struggle with life’s ever-changing demands? Someone in their teens or twenties? Doubtful. Maybe a few, and maybe a few more might imagine what it could be like. But those with a few years behind us can work from experience. From the knowledge we’ve learned and the emotions we’ve felt while following the path we tread.

 

 

 

But more importantly, when was the last time you checked the age of a debut author before you decided to read a book?

 

 

 

My advice to all who desire to be a writer, no matter what their age, experience, educations, or anything else for that matter is: WRITE!

 

 

 

You can’t be an author without first being a writer. And you can’t be a writer if you don’t write. So, write what you want. Write what you feel. Write whatever your mind congers up out of nowhere. Just write. You can always go back and polish it later.   

 

 

 

Back Cover Blurb for Moose Ridge: Ending to Beginning:

For New Yorker Jazmine, the journey from blissful to shattered was only a 4-hour flight. She came to Wyoming to join her soulmate, who she supported through his medical school. But he’s moved on, abandoning her in this small western community. Now she needs a job, and to forget him. Not to mention a reason to live. The town’s welcome helps, but when another crushing blow comes, she wants to run. Is the faith and strength of another enough to risk staying and relighting her flame of hope?

Buy Links:

https://authorcraighastings.com/ending-to-beginning

Amazon:      http://ow.ly/P68G30rXXBi

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/58657447-moose-ridge

Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/.../moose-ridge.../1139953616

Champagne Book Club:    http://ow.ly/8jUg30rXXBA

Others: https://books2read.com/u/mYGxKP?redirect=off

 

 

DON’T FORGET TO LEAVE A COMMENT TO BE PLACED IN THE DRAWING TO WIN AN EBOOK COPY OF MOOSE RIDGE: ENDING TO BEGINNING BETWEEN NOW AND SATURDAY, NOVVEMBER 27TH AT MIDNIGHT MST. (Print book will be available at a later date).

BY LEAVING A COMMENT, YOU GRANT PERMISSION FOR YOUR EMAIL TO BE REVEALED TO THE AUTHOR IF YOU ARE THE WINNER TO FACILITATE RECEIPT OF YOUR BOOK.

 

 

 

Patti’s Review of Moose Ridge: Ending to Beginning

Jazmine Strake finds her dreams shattered when she arrives in a small town in Wyoming and learns the love of her life has moved on without her. Her crushed heart struggles to find any reason for joy or hope. The townspeople embrace her into their community, but it is Sadie, grandmother of the veterinarian Jason Withers where she takes a job, who shows her the kindness and compassion she craves.

Moose Ridge: Ending to Beginning is a slow developing romance fueled by a hefty dose of scheming, prayer, and intervention by grandmother Sadie.

The characters in Craig Hastings’ story are unique and engaging. In addition to the main characters, I particularly enjoyed the part the puppies and Stan, the Mountain Dew drinking lizard, played in this delightful novel.

If you enjoy romance with a different twist, you’ll find this a fun read.

 

 

 

Born and raised in Muncie, IN, Craig Hastings is about as typical middle-America as they come. His 20 years in the U.S. Air Force, followed by another 15 as a DoD contractor, allowed him to live in several places in the States and overseas. After over 20 years in Germany and the UK, Craig hates moving. He and his wife settled in Oklahoma City where their 3 miniature Dachshunds allow Craig and his wife to live with them. He continues working for a major computer company under contract with a major airline manufacturer, which keeps him busy during the weekdays, leaving his evenings and weekends for his writing and maintaining their acreage. Oh, and his major job of taking care of the pups.

 

 

 

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Comments

Tracy Crump From MS At 11/29/2021 10:43:58 PM

I love this, Craig! Great advice for writers, and this really struck me: When was the last time you checked the age of a debut author before you decided to read a book? Truth!

Reply by: Patti Shene

Tracy, thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment for Craig. I agree. I have no idea the age of some of my favorite authors.

eMarie From Idaho At 11/19/2021 9:37:17 AM

Loved this blog post! Yes, Write, Write, Write!!! I'm also thankful you said age doesn't matter! I admire all the authors who began as teens - fresh, clear minds, uninhibited and wild imaginations!!! But, as you noted, never discount life experiences for us "older teens." Thank you! :)

Reply by: Patti Shene

Hi eMarie. Thank you for stopping by and sharing your thoughts with us.

Jean Alfieri From CO At 11/18/2021 7:02:16 PM

Great advice, Craig - thank you!

Reply by: Patti Shene

Hi Jean! Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment for Craig.

Cleo Lampos From Oak Lawn, IL At 11/18/2021 2:43:41 PM

Never read about writing so analytically. But you are right. Who looks at the age of a writer? Just read the book!!! Blessings on your venture.

Reply by: Patti Shene

Hi Cleo. This is true! Thank you for dropping in and leaving a comment.

Becky Van Vleet From CO At 11/18/2021 11:43:59 AM

Craig, I applaud you for your courage to take the writing plunge for publication in your later years. I started writing in my 60's, and you're right, it can seem daunting! I grew up in Indianapolis and lived in Muncie for about 8 years, so I'm a fellow Hoosier! Keep enjoying your writing path.

Reply by: Patti Shene

Hi Becky. Sounds like you and Craig have a couple of things in common. Thank you for stopping by and sharing with us.

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Patti Shene
1/6/2017

WHERE IS BABY JESUS by BETH STEURY
Patti Shene
12/21/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR KATHERYN MADDOX HADDAD
Patti Shene
12/14/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR PATRICIA BRADLEY
Patti Shene
12/8/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR LAURA V. HILTON
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12/1/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR CHRISTINE LINDSAY
Patti Shene
11/26/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR KIMBERLI RENEE CAMPBELL
Patti Shene
11/16/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR JODIE WOLFE
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11/3/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR JEAN ANN WILLIAMS
Patti Shene
10/20/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR DAWN V. CAHILL
Patti Shene
10/6/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR JANET K. BROWN
Patti Shene
9/29/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR ROSE ALLEN MCcAULEY
Patti Shene
9/22/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR PATRICK E. CRAIG
Patti Shene
9/15/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR ALICE K. ARENZ
Patti Shene
8/31/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR CLEO LAMPOS
Patti Shene
8/18/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR JUNE FOSTER
Patti Shene
8/4/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR ELLIE GUSTAFSON
Patti Shene
7/28/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR GAIL KITTLESON
Patti Shene
6/2/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR JO HUDDLESTON
Patti Shene
5/19/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR CAROLE BROWN
Patti Shene
5/4/2016

The Tenacity of an Arachnid by Sandy Kirby Quandt
Patti Shene
4/21/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR BONNIE ENGSTROM
Patti Shene
4/7/2016

REVIEW OF SAINT'S ROOST by TERRY BURNS
Patti Shene
3/30/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR ANNETTE O'HARE
Patti Shene
3/17/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR DONNA SCHLACHTER
Patti Shene
3/3/2016

REVIEW OF HANNAH'S CHOICE BY JAN DREXLER
Patti Shene
2/27/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR WADE WEBSTER
Patti Shene
2/17/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR PAT JEANNE DAVIS
Patti Shene
2/3/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR DEBRA E. MARVIN
Patti Shene
1/20/2016

HAPPY 2016 FROM WRITER SANDY KIRBY QUANDT
Patti Shene
1/7/2016

WELCOME AUTHOR GAIL KITTLESON
Patti Shene
12/18/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR JUNE FOSTER
Patti Shene
12/3/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR TERESA IVES LILLY
Patti Shene
11/19/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR NIKE CHILLEMI
Patti Shene
10/14/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR KELLY IRVIN
Patti Shene
10/1/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR PATTY SMITH HALL
Patti Shene
9/17/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR HOLLY MICHAEL
Patti Shene
9/4/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR CONNIE MILLER PEASE
Patti Shene
8/19/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR JOHNNIE ALEXANDER
Patti Shene
8/5/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR TERESA POLLARD
Patti Shene
7/16/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR GAIL SATTLER
Patti Shene
7/9/2015

WEIGHT LOSS DEVOTIONAL FREE ON KNDLE
Patti Shene
6/20/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR YVONNE ADERSON
Patti Shene
6/5/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR SHERRI STONE
Patti Shene
5/21/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR MARIANNE JONES
Patti Shene
5/6/2015

REVIEW OF INDEBTED BY BRAXTON DeGARMO
Patti Shene
4/29/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR DEANNA K. KLINGEL
Patti Shene
4/17/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR TERESA IVES LILLY
Patti Shene
4/2/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR PEG PHIFER
Patti Shene
3/19/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR DARLENE FRANKLIN
Patti Shene
3/4/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR MICHELLE GRIEP
Patti Shene
2/20/2015

NEGOTIATING THE LEARNING CURVE
Patti Shene
2/6/2015

WHEN ENCOURAGEMENT COMES YOUR WAY
Patti Shene
1/30/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR SANDY NADEAU
Patti Shene
1/14/2015

I AM A WRITER--OR AM I REALLY?
Patti Shene
1/1/2015

WELCOME AUTHOR GEORGE DUNCAN
Patti Shene
12/3/2014

WELCOME AUTHOR MARTHA ROGERS
Patti Shene
11/21/2014

WELCOME AUTHOR EDITH EDWARDS
Patti Shene
11/6/2014

WELCOME AUTHOR GAIL KITTLESON
Patti Shene
10/16/2014

WELCOME AUTHOR CAMILLE EIDE
Patti Shene
10/2/2014

WELCOME AUTHOR FRANCES SUSANNE BROWN
Patti Shene
9/18/2014

WELCOME AUTHOR AVA PENNINGTON
Patti Shene
9/4/2014

WELCOME AUTHOR LILLIAN DUNCAN
Patti Shene
8/21/2014

WELCOME AUTHOR CYNTHIA TONEY
Patti Shene
8/6/2014

WELCOME AUTHOR CARRIE STUART PARKS
Patti Shene
7/16/2014

WELCOME AUTHOR & PUBLISHER TRACY RUCKMAN
Patti Shene
7/3/2014

WELCOME AUTHOR JANET SKETCHLEY
Patti Shene
6/18/2014

WELCOME AUTHOR ANE MULLIGAN
Patti Shene
6/4/2014

WELCOME AUTHOR REBECCA CAREY LYLES
Patti Shene
5/15/2014

DARK BIOLOGY BY BONNIE DORAN
Patti Shene
5/1/2014

BY THE WATERS OF KADESH BY CAROLE TOWRISS
P
4/17/2014

WHERE HOPE STARTS BY ANGELA D. MEYER
Patti Shene
4/3/2014

THE CHARM BRACELET BY SUSAN PAGE DAVIS
Patti Shene
3/20/2014

Love Redeemed by Kelly Irvin
Patti Shene
3/5/2014

Shadows of the Past by Patricia Bradley
Patti Shene
2/20/2014

WELCOME WRITER DELORES LIESNER
Patti Shene
2/5/2014

The Heartbeat of the Novel by James R. Callan
Patti Shene
1/15/2014

Don't Let Bible Contradictions Rob Your Faith
Patti Shene
1/2/2014

Welcome Author Lilliann Duncan
Patti Shene
5/30/2013

Confessions of a Reluctant Reader
Patti Shene
5/9/2013

WELCOME AUTHOR LENA NELSON DOOLEY
Patti Shene
5/2/2013

WELCOME AUTHOR KATHI MACIAS
Patti Shene
4/24/2013

Review of Congo Dawn by Jeanette Windle
Patti Shene
4/18/2013

I'm back
Patti Shene
4/11/2013

Welcome Author JoAnn Durgin
Patti Shene
2/14/2013

Welcome Award-Winning Author Susan Page Davis
Patti Shene
2/7/2013

Teaching Old Dogs New Tricks
Patti Shene
1/30/2013

Introducing Jeanette Windle and Congo Dawn
Patti Shene
1/23/2013

Author Carole Johnson on Perseverance
Patti Shene
1/17/2013

The Value of Social Media
Patti Shene
1/9/2013

A Glimpse Into the Future
Patti Shene
1/2/2013

Welcome Author Jo Huddleston
Patti Shene
12/20/2012

Give Some Holiday Hope for Just $3.99
Patti Shene
12/14/2012

Great Christmas books from Lena Nelson Dooley
Patti Shene
12/7/2012

Welcome to Author Jude Urbanski
Patti Shene
11/13/2012

A Writers Journey Part IV
Patti Shene
11/13/2012

Interview with Author Kelly Irvin
Patti Shene
11/13/2012

Whose prophecy do you believe?
Patti Shene
11/13/2012

Welcome Author Michal J. Webb
Patti Shene
11/13/2012

Meet Author Sharon Shrock and the Women of Valley
Patti Shene
11/13/2012

Welcome Author Lillian Duncan
Patti Shene
11/13/2012