About Patrick Derrickson

Storyteller. Husband. Geekdad. Enjoyer of life.

Two Weeks In…Much to Think About, Still So Much to Do

Two weeks into NaNoWriMo, and I’m just a little short of the overall pace. I’ll need to increase my daily rate to 1,739 to finish on time. I’ll have the weekends and some vacation days to help meet my goal.

How is everyone else doing?

Woke up to the news about the atrocities in Paris. It’s hard to stay motivated when you know people are suffering, and you’re half a world away and can’t help them. We have overcome horrific events before, I believe we will overcome this as well.

We have to overcome, we have to stay strong. We have to teach our kids and the young, impressionable people in this world, that helping people brings more joy, more love, more advancement of our culture then the blatant disregard for life. This needs to start at the top, with all the leaders of the world.

We cannot progress as a race if we continuously have extreme pieces of our race sabotaging that progress.

We will overcome. We will persevere.

NaNoWriMo – 2015

So, I’ve decided to participate in NaNoWriMo this year, and progressing toward 50k. Just under daily goal, but since I’m on vacation the next couple days, I should be able to boost my word total. Benefiting from a reworked outline is really helping. Lots of distractions, from current events to a backlog of TV shows to watch.

I can do this.

Writing Tools on the Go

A friend and fellow writer posted a tip on how to capture ideas, or continue your work in progress, when you are out and about. Carrying a small notebook or index cards can help you capture those ideas before they are lost to the wind.

But what do you do when you forget everything but your smartphone?

If you have an iPhone, there are several apps that can capture those ideas, such as Notes, To Dos, Evernote, and yes, even sending an email to yourself can suffice.

What if you wanted something more? What if you could capture an idea and begin writing a first draft, in the same app?

Then I would recommend Story Skeleton.

It’s a story mapping tool that helps keep your thoughts and ideas organized. Want to continue a work in progress?  Importing and Exporting via Dropbox is a cinch.  You can also send via email.

And the best part? You can export your file in 6 different formats, like .Rtf, .Txt, and even .Scriv. Yes, you can export file into the Scrivener extension.

Give it a try. You may never forget another writing idea again.


The Fictioneers – July 17th at the Claymont Public Library

If you’re in the Delaware area, come hear The Fictioneers read from Someone Wicked: A Written Remains Anthology!  I’ll be reading an excerpt from my story, The Next King.

Joining me will be Guild members: Gail Husch, Maria Masington, and JM Reinbold!

Ficioneers - 7:21:14

Check us out online at Written Remains Writer’s Guild.


Generating Character Names with Scrivener

Have you ever struggled to find that perfect name for your character?  Perused your personal library, looking for that one, great combination?  Mixed several product names to come up with that unique, but reasonable character moniker?

If you use Scrivener, you have a great and wonderful tool at your disposal.

If you’re not aware of it, let me show you how to get there.

After opening Scrivener, click “Edit”, then “Writing Tools”, and select “Name Generator”.


This pop-up box will appear:


Clicking the gear symbol on the lower right corner of the pop-up window will open the control screen.  Select your gender, nationality, or even combinations of two forenames or surnames.  You can even adjust a slider bar to find a more obscure name.

Adjust the slider bar to number of names you wish to generate, and then simply click “Generate Names”.


And voila!  A list of names.


A warning, though.  You may lose track of time playing with this tool.

Have fun!

The Launch of My Freelance Writing Career

After a couple of weeks of intensive education, writing, and rewriting, I received great news over the weekend.  The Yahoo Contributors Network accepted my article for publication!

What Personal Investments Do You Make as a Writer?

Click the link above to read the article.  Check out the great events on the horizon my writing guild has lined up.  Then, check out a local arts program that fills the creative side in all of us.

And I finally received my business cards.

Business Card

Now, to network with some freelance writers to grow my business.

Keep writing, my friends.

In the Groove

After waking in the early morning, the dream still fresh on my mind, I slipped downstairs to my computer and beat out the outline to a short story. One that I was sure would only be 500-1,000 words. It would be my first flash fiction story.

3,504 words later, the angry cries from the young woman who had just lost everything still rang through my head. I’m not sure if I had ever written so much, so fast.

It felt great to be in the groove.

Now that I’ve met my writing goal for the first month of the year, can I continue the momentum?

I plan on it.