About Patrick Derrickson

Storyteller. Husband. Geekdad. Enjoyer of life.



Finished watching a video on YouTube posted by SpaceRip about the universe.  They talked about Edwin Hubble.  Read about Edwin Hubble. He died in 1953 from a brain clot.  His wife quickly cremated him and never told anyone where he was buried.

Did he really die? Is he secretly alive, or is he frozen, until we have manned interstellar space flights?


This week I received great news.  I have been asked to join the Written Remains Writers Guild as a full member!  I’ve been a member of the Mixed Genre Critique group for some time, and feel at home in the group.

I’ve also been revising a story I’m submitting for an anthology that will contain stories from my Writing Guild.  Hopefully it will be good enough to be included.  It will most likely be my first published story.

I follow several authors and bloggers in Twitter  Some of the links to articles they provide have helped me look at my stories in a different light.  Some of my favorites are @ChuckWendig, @Janice_Hardy, @MikeStackpole, @LouAnders, @WriterlyTweets, and @JaneFriedman.  I also following the Big 6, and other presses.

Some of the posts contain links to free or affordable writing classes.  A couple are:



That’s it for today…Keep Writing!


This week, I struggled with what project to write.  I had several short stories that I submitted, but were rejected.  I like the stories, and the messages they present.  After serious consideration, they may not have enough science fiction or fantasy elements.  That could be why they keep being rejected.  Or my writing just isn’t good enough yet.

On the novel front, I have finished one scene and started another.  I have fleshed out some minor characters, and keep revising the antagonist.  It is exciting because for the first time, I feel the characters are actually speaking to me, telling me what they would actually do.  This is great, right?

My dilemma, and title of this post, is that I have several ideas I want to write immediately.  I write as much as I can, almost every day, but in small snippets.  Work, coaching my daughter’s volleyball team, and other family obligations limit my actual time writing.  I usually write during my lunch period, and I am up every day at 5:00AM exercising.  If I don’t exercise, I try to write.  I’ll have to think about squeezing more writing time somewhere.

New topic.  I revised a short story about an alien invasion, and the connection between my stepson.  His hormones have apparently decided to go into overdrive the past few weeks, and is severely pushing his boundaries.  While some of his concerns are valid, he sometimes crosses the line, especially when he doesn’t get his way.  The story idea came about the reconnection of the father/son bond after a catastrophic event.

I hope he reads this story soon, or someday. I have been in his life since he was 6 months new.  While we don’t have everything in common, I know that I have shaped some of his life.

I am going to end this post with some great news.  I have been conditionally accepted into a critique group!  I need to attend two sessions, and if it goes well, I will become a full member.

I couldn’t find a critique group near me, and was about to give up.  After searching the internet, I found this group and perused their website.  They offered quarterly writing sessions, free and open to the public.  I attended one, and after the free write, shared my story.  During a break, I discussed my experience and writing goals with a couple of other attendees.  Turns out, one was the director for the writing group.

After sending an email thanking her for the open writing section, she asked me if I was still searching for a critique group.  I was, and she sent a set of documents.  A 2-page application, request for a writing sample, and a writing resume was soon complete and on its way.  After several weeks of consideration, I was accepted.

All of the members in the group are published, so I am a little nervous about presenting my work.  On the other hand, I have nowhere else to go but up.

Until next week, keep following your dreams.  Sometimes the door opens.


So, I just updated WordPress for iOS. Seems ok so far, and I am writing this on my iPhone.

Regarding the title of this post. My 16 year old has decided he wants to be more independent. Out of the blue. Rules be damned.

Payback? I don’t think I was this bad. I was working consistently, and was more responsible. I had a little more freedom, but I earned it. Now, it seems the sense of entitlement has permeated his world. Sigh.

On the writing front, I finished another short story, and revised another. I submitted 2 stories, but both were rejected. While I like them both, and they have personal meanings, I don’t think there is enough conflict or drama. Also, they are both fantasies, and may not be fantastical enough.

I have also fleshed out some of the main characters of my novel. I have almost 5,000 words written, not including the character and outline parts. I have started to write certain scenes involving the characters, because I felt I wasn’t progressing fast enough.

That’s all for now. See you in a week.


The past few months have been busy.  With a new job, writing time has been hard to find.  However, I have been able to finish five short stories, and one that I can’t seem to find the right way to  end.  The good part is that I submitted all of them to various magazines.  To date, none have been accepted.

I have also been outlining my first novel.  It is a science fiction action/thriller, that may be either a YA or adult novel.  It is in three acts, and I am creating the scenes.  I am debating on whether I should make chapters next.  I still need to tighten the scenes, and then make sure the plot flows.

The characters are fun, but more work.  I have the main character, and some secondary characters almost complete, but still need to complete the villain.  I don’t think he is strong enough yet.

Over the past three days, I have started the story.  The opening scenes focus on the main character, and I wanted to see if my anticipated beginning is strong enough.  Definitely needs to be tighter.

I have also submitted an application to a critique group.  All of the existing members have been published, so an experienced group of authors.  I could learn much from them.  I need them to help me grow as a writer.  

On the reading front, I have been consuming many writing books.  From character and plot development, to beginnings and scene development, I have increased my knowledge of writing.  I have interspersed some science fiction and fantasy books.  

Hopefully my next update won’t take as long.


I have been busy writing my outline and trying to flesh out my characters in preparation for NaNoWriMo.  It worked out well enough that I started my novel November 1st.  So far, so good.  Trying to find time to write is starting to get easier.  The soccer season in wrapping up, so not many games left to referee.

Once I decide to write, and actually start to put words to paper, I get immersed in the actual process.  My typing cannot keep up with my thoughts.  I may try and use an app on my phone to capture my words, at least to offset the time away from the computer.

Well, time to get back to writing.  If you’re doing NaNoWriMo, good luck and stay writing!

Creative Ideas

I get my crazy story ideas in my dreams.  Sometimes my dreams are so vivid that I am in a scene interacting with various people.  Most mornings when I awake, I am able to remember these events and either write them in my book, or type them in my running story idea document saved on my computer.  Other times, I am awakened from my dream due to the huge impact the dream has on my life.  I find it hard to fall back to sleep when this happens.

Now, it’s time to pick a story and write a novel for NaNoWriMo.  I have a couple of ideas, and have started a rough outline for both.  I will be using Scrivener to construct and write my novel.  I love the places for the characters, scenes, and places.  I have added a folder for the outline.

How are you getting ready for NaNoWriMo?

Writing update

Last week I finished my first short story.  It is a light horror story, just short of 5,000 words.  This is the longest piece of writing I have done since high school.  I let it sit a few days, and then completed my first edit yesterday.  (took 4 hours) I ended up adding 400 words.   I wanted to enter a Writers Digest contest, but the world count cannot exceed 4,000.  I don’t know if I can cut out 1,400 words and it still tell the same story.  So, maybe I’ll just submit it as is.

From the various podcasts I listen to, books I am reading, and e-newsletters I get, I am improving my thought process of developing a story.  I’ll try to add some links to the resources that have helped me improve my writing skills.

I am also planning on participating and winning NaNoWriMo.  I am using Scrivener, and have started to outline the plot and develop my characters.  I have also been keeping a writing journal with me to jot down any story ideas, or scenes for existing ideas.

I have been using Dragon Dictation for my iPhone to help keep me writing every day.  To me, this allows me to utilize my time while running errands, driving the kids around town, and doing the chores.

Until next time, have fun and enjoy each day.


Daily Musing

Writing anywhere from 15 minutes to 1 hour per day…really close to 20 minutes.  I am shooting for 2 hours a week, with any extra a nice bonus.  My wife is very supportive of my wanting to write.  She doesn’t want to read my story until it is done though. 

My daughter loves to write…she has more than 10 journals she updates with daily musings, or writes stories.  She also wrote a song.  She seems to be the creative type, and currently wants to pursue a career in fashion…we’ll see how that goes.