Tag Archives: Writing

Fifth Video Lesson Research James Patterson’s MasterClass

Friday’s Video Lesson 5  from James Patterson’s MasterClass.

For those who don’t understand these posts. I am taking James Patterson’s MasterClass. Every Friday I will post  a few words about what I learned and what I am pondering , about this lesson. This week is lesson five. If you have questions post them here. Or, if you want to join this class, then click the link in the left top sidebar.

James Patterson masterclass lesson five
James Patterson masterclass lesson five

This lesson is about the information you will need to fill out your story.


“The more you BS when you are writing a book the worse it is” ~ James Patterson


“For male readers, details can never be enough. If you get it wrong you lose them. If you as a writer can’t get your facts straight, how can your readers believe anything in the story? Don’t fake it! Don’t make it up.”~ James Patterson


“If you are writing about a city it is important in your story you need to be there. Wandering around a new city, what do you notice?”~James Patterson

My thoughts went off in the direction of  drawing up a map. You will need a map of ‘where’ your story takes place.  Your characters won’t be floating in space. They need a place to live, to move around, to cause damage.

If your setting is in a city block, how many houses are on this street? If it is in the country or an apartment building, how many people live there? How many pets? How many kids? Where are the trees? Fences and the grocery store, the library? Just like in your neighborhood show where your characters’ take a walk, and how do they get to work? A bus? A car? Do they walk or jog or ride a bike?

Can’t draw. Then do a search on Google Maps. Try your own home address. Or go right to the location of your novel. Move the map around, find the right street. Make sure you have the local flavor, the grocery store, library, or coffee shop. You will see each street labeled. You can get in closer and explore the area right on ground level.

copy a map from google maps
copy a map from google maps

Try this with any town. Take a screen shot. Copy it out by hand or print it out. You have the beginnings of your setting. Your story map.

Be as detailed as you like

Now back to James Patterson’s MasterClass.

James Patterson said, “Mostly you won’t have trouble getting an interview. People like to talk about what they do.”

I wonder if in his  first interview he was nervous?  Is he still nervous? I wonder if he was ever turned down for an interview?

With the Cross book, James Patterson had to learn about forensic psychology to make his book believable.

What I got out of this, was to write about what you know- then learn the rest. Talk to people. Find someone, who can do what you need to learn. Go to the library. Look on the Internet, ask questions, find the information then write about it.

As an example: You need to learn how to fly a hot air balloon. Check out the Internet. Find a company who will take you up in a hot air balloon. Then once you are up in the big blue yonder, you can start asking questions. Always be polite and request that interview instead of cornering people.

I just did a Google search on ‘Hot Air Balloon’ rides near me and found, Nostalgia Ballooning. So many beautiful pictures!

Lesson Five has a workbook,  a comment section, and a video critique if you have questions on this or any lesson, you can post a video for Mr. Patterson.

From me: read, read, read, you will learn a lot about how to write,  by reading and picking apart someone else’s stories.

See you next Friday for lesson six of James Patterson’s MasterClass. If you want to take this class, click on the link in the -top-left sidebar.

Fourth Video Lesson Plot James Patterson’s MasterClass

Lesson 4 Plot James Patterson's MasterClass
Lesson 4 Plot James Patterson’s MasterClass

Video Lesson 4 PLOT

“Story is about the thrills, and twists and turns, but more than anything else it’s about revealing character.” ~James Patterson

What I learned from Jim Patterson in lesson four.

  1. Characters are revealed by their action
  2. Try to write every chapter, as it was your first chapter in a book.
  3. Set out to write a number one story thriller, with a number one story idea.
  4. Don’t write a single chapter that doesn’t ‘t propel the story forward
  5. Leave out all the parts readers are going to skim.
  6. Tell my story, map out my story, in ten or fifteen minutes

James Patterson mentions E.M Forster and his famous description of a plot.

The king died and the queen died is a story

The king died and the queen died of grief, is a plot

What does this mean? What I see… When that Queen died from grief you can add the love story, the reason for her death. The cause of her death, from there you have the beginnings of a story. From there you add in the ‘why’ that Queen loved the King so much she died when he did. You will wonder how the King died. You get it?

James Patterson said to, “Find the conflict in your characters.”

He also used The Great Gatsby’s plot: Gatsby has everything anyone could dream of except love. Gatsby gets love. Gatsby loses love and loses everything. And that’s Gatsby.

The rest are all those questions, problems, and the reasons why Gatsby did what he did.

Listen carefully to lesson 4 video, do the assignment. Have a question ask it. Have a comment post it.  Watch that video as many times as you need to.

See you in class.

The writer finished James Patterson’s Masterclass.

The writer finished James Patterson’s Masterclass then wrote a mystery.


Third video lesson Raw Ideas James Patterson’s MasterClass


03 raw ideas

Video 3 lesson 3 RAW IDEAS

These are just a few points that stood out. There is a class video along  with a workbook and comments section.

“The more you know about, the more likely you are to combine things into an idea that is striking.”~ James Patterson

  1. What I got from this lesson.
  2. Men see things differently than woman do.
  3. Make an idea notebook
  4. Ask yourself: Can I write a whole book about this? Will people care?
  5. Write for yourself, then
  6. Write for your reader.
  7. Keep learning new things

James Patterson is frequently asked, “Where do you come up with your stories?”

He will come up with a title or some little thing will catch his eye. He explains he has a big folder of ideas, and that he can write a story about anything.


James Patterson tells us, that he can get an idea from something he might spot on the street.

Let me think about this one. Gum, or doggy-do? Hmmm, maybe a bit of trash can lead your readers to a mystery.   I can see this.

Jimmy weaved up to his apartment door. The sun would be rising in a few minutes. Dizzy and exhausted he dropped his keys just as the wind picked up, blowing an empty bag of chips across his bloody Rockport’s.   He scooped up his keys as the empty chip bag skipped across a patch of grass and lodged under his neighbor’s car. …Maybe the chip bag had the blood, not his shoes, even better. 

He goes on to say that you need to find an idea that ‘you’ find interesting. Patterson states, “I don’t write realism.”

One of his favorite books is Honeymoon. Which just so happens to be the book used as an example through this class. If you haven’t read it, you can get a copy by clicking that link/app over to left side page. I am reading this book, it flows quickly, I am hooked. * I plan on picking the book apart in a different post.

When you take this class. Listen and listen well. That Ah-ha moment you are looking for may not hit you right away.

“You hope the book you are writing is spectacular.”~ James Patterson

First Video of James Patterson’s MasterClass

James Patterson’s workbook, for his MasterClass, has the first four videos listed to be viewed in the first week. Today, I will just talk about the first video, out of the twenty-two. He does say to take this class at your own pace. *See link on top, left sidebar.*

You may be wondering why I would be blogging about this class.You may be asking. Copyright issues, aren’t they a problem? Well, they could be except in the first class I was told to:

▶ Get your friends to support your new project. Post your intentions on social media and update your status regularly over the course of the class. Identify a few interested friends who would be willing to provide feedback. We’d love to see your progress too! Share your status with us on Twitter and Facebook @MasterClass.

In this class, Mr. Patterson, has us follow along with his book Honeymoon. This way you can see how the book was imagined.

“Keep the passion alive.”

What do I expect from this class?
Well, what I want is a book contract. 🙄 And to have the talent to put together a story while lying on a beach getting burned to a crisp while having someone’s worrying over me with a fan, SPF100, a large hat, lots of water and…Come on! Realistically! I am standing at a tall table clicking away, wondering why my characters are crawling under the table and wasting away while there is a full fridge just steps away. I wonder, who is sneaking in from the hallway? Heh-heh!

“Love what you do”

In the first video, ‘Introduction’ you hear, “Hi, I am Steven King” James Patterson jumps right in telling you that first lines are important. In those four words, you see that this class “will be reverent and fun and a little jokey at times. And I know who writers like Steven King are.”

Are you good at investing time? Mr. Patterson is very efficient and lets you know he will talk about, “How to invest that time well, taking time wasting things out of the process.”

If you listen you will learn from his talks.

James Patterson tells me. “It is a daunting thing to start a book.”

In this class, he will talk about raw ideas, how to build a characters, how to create a scene, how to make a chapter work, outlines, marketing.

“Believe in yourself”

He will tell me how he writes, how he makes his writing work.
I downloaded the workbook with the Honeymoon outline.
He tells me, to get excited to write. Your first book, he says, may never get published. James Patterson’s first book was never published.

“Endure rejection”

Listen to his videos and read the workbooks, make comments, ask Mr. Patterson a question by making a video and posting it. Hmm. Now where did I put my Jane Jetson mask?

What did I get out of this first video? James Patterson’s voice. There is nothing like hearing an author talk. He is trying to tell his secrets as long as you can hear and absorb them. I can hear you saying, “What the does that mean?” {I kept the space for Hemingway}

Have you watched a movie or read a book for the second time, then realized you missed so much in that first reading. Listening to someone trying to teach you something is like that. Your mind has to be open.

Is there something you want to know about this class, this video? Ask me!

‘Nuff said.

Plans to Post every Friday about James Patterson’s MasterClass

James Patterson Teaches Writing. In Mr. Patterson’s MasterClass, there are 22 video lessons and exercises. I will be posting about each lesson, once a week, for twenty-two Fridays.

This is from the class page. ~

“James teaches you how to create characters, write dialogue, and keep readers turning the page.”

And this is from the class page:~ “100% EXCLUSIVE CONTENT

For the first time, James Patterson teaches you everything he has learned. Only available through MasterClass.”

We shall see…

I will write about the class, giving you my impressions, and some of my notes.

I had started this class last year and I was unable to finish due to a car accident. My brain was rattled. I was unable to comprehend what I was reading. Instead of giving up and not reading, I became angry and reread paragraphs. I used a blank piece of paper to cover the part of the page I wasn’t reading.

Then, I wrote… I wrote anything that came to mind. Mostly what I wrote didn’t make sense. Still I wrote.

The accident happened while my husband and I were sitting at a red light and discussing where we would stop for an early dinner. We had just left my doctor’s office. I have been seeing this doctor for years; he has treated me for two bouts of cancer. I see him every year; he monitors my blood and thyroid levels, ensuring all my numbers are in line.

The truck that hit us was in the right lane, the driver decided he wanted to get over to the far left, so he could turn on route 83. There were a few things he didn’t take into consideration. The van in front of him, the red light and the speed limit. And the rest of the cars on the road!

He slammed into a van, then pushed the van into the back of our car. The light changed just as all this was taking place. The cars in front and to the right moved forward. Metal screeching and tires squealing as we were thrown forward. Luckily my husband had left enough space between us and the car in front of us, so as we were hit, we were able to avoid engaging a fourth car in the accident.

Back to James Patterson’s MasterClass. Tomorrow I will post the first lesson. See you then…

If you want to work along with me…Click on the MasterClass widget located on the sidebar.

Prince Thank You for the music

Prince was a part of my life, even though I was never able to attend his concerts or meet the man, the singer, the dancer, and the artist. My moments are interweaved with his music and are still part of my life. I would play his songs when I hung out with my friends, friends who, sadly, died young. Just listening and dancing to Prince’s songs brings them back.

I listened to Prince on date nights, sung and danced to with my sister to ‘Little Red Corvette’ and rocked with my kids.

Prince’s songs are part the human condition. Dare you to close your eyes, and see if you can’t help but rock out with, ‘U got the look’ or D.M.S.R.

He was there for major and minor life changes. When my day was disheartening listening to, ‘When Doves Cry ‘made me feel. When New Years Eve came around and I was at work, I cranked up a radio and played, ‘1999.’ Just crying in the dark, or dancing away depression, anger, or a breakup, didn’t matter when I cranked up ‘PartyMan.’

Prince’s life intersected with my life, with my kids, every time I turned on the radio, MTV, or remember driving in a car with the rusted out floors, eating ketchup on bread, Princes songs, his voice, his essence was right there with me.

And lets not forget, the man was damn sexy. {{HOT}}

Time to stop searching out the ‘how to’ and write….

Last year I moved my wordpress blog to here… Then stuff happened and I stopped posting.

What I mean as stuff, first my dog died-my mom got sick and she died. Anytime I thought of writing -something came up -or the phone rang. My list of things to do got longer and harder to complete.

Well,… that needs to end.

I feel better when I write, except when I sit to long, so…I grabbed my PC and stood at a tall table. My cats weren’t to happy, they tried to knock it down. They needed something else to watch, so I sprinkled bird seed on the deck.

It worked! DSC_0310

I joined ‘Writers Village University’ and took a course.

I signed up for a couple of online classes at UCF.

The more I searched out how to write. The less I wrote. 🙁

What I did learn- Searching out stuff stops me from writing.- And writing isn’t editing and editing isn’t writing.

To get writing done, I just need to ‘start writing’ and not worry about if the scenes are right, or if I used ‘the‘ fifty-thousand-times.

That part is ‘editing’.

And well, if I edit first, then I have an empty page and that isn’t my goal.

I am glad to finally write ‘words’ on ‘this’ page.  Now, my goal is to post at least once a week.

I will edit the next post I write.  This one, I typed out quickly, without editing afterwards. I am just  thrilled to have it here.

And, I hope to take a trip around the net and see how everyone’s Blogs are doing.

In the meantime, check out my examiner pages. (^._.^)ノ

Bucks are dangerous when they are trolling~ Deer mating season in Hampshire

A walking path is never even. That was the thought in my head this afternoon when I headed out through the garage. The winds were coming at me from the northwest, cold and strong. First thing I wanted to do was collect one large bag of trash from the pole barn, there seems to be a never ending supply of junk in that barn.
As I opened up the barn I kept talking out loud to myself, I was hoping that the skunk who lives around the barn would scurry away when it heard me coming.

I consider it a good outing when nothing furry tries to chase me down:-)

After I had one bag stuffed and tied off I looked off towards the back path, or what use to be the back path. My tractor had stopped working this summer, as well as the gas mower. So parts of my lawn /field grass were ankle to waist high, making my walk an arduous excursion. I still had the narrow path that Uriah had carved. I decided to take a walk, before deep snow erased that path.

I stopped my non-stop, keep-away-animal chatter as I hit the lowest part of the path. I followed a line though the grass then turned to the left and walked on the incline, sidestepping a section riddle with burrows.

I made a mental note to bring with a small saw or heavy clippers next time, and cut the invading Bog Willows away from the old path.

I continued on towards the east invisible fence line. I turned towards the north and a wave of sadness hit. I kept walking.

I was in an area where, years before, I had been charged by a forty pound raccoon. At that time I had three dogs with me, they all saved my life.

I stopped and listened. Winds blasted over the oldest Bog Willows and rustled the tops of the four to five foot dried grass , then blew past me.

“ I think I need to walk a different path …” I said that out loud.

Instantaneously, a buck stood up, not more than forty feet from where I was standing.

I can’t speak for the buck,..for me, that moment moved in slow motion.

I stopped breathing and froze! I was hoping that he wouldn’t notice me standing in front of him wearing a bright orange jacket, I closed my eyes ..I really wished that would make me disappear!

A male deer’s mating, or rutting season is around November. Bucks are attitude with pointy antlers. And I found myself standing too close to one. If he charged at me he could use those antlers or stomp on me, yes they do that! Ouch!

When the buck rose up from where he had been resting, he slowly turned in my direction. I could see the wind slightly ruffling his fur as it blew towards me, lucky for me I was down wind. He snorted as he stood up and again as he faced me. He stomped the ground, and raised his head up and smelled the air.

At this point I was trying to become a turtle and shrink into my coat.

I didn’t breath! I didn’t move, that is supposed to work right? Or it that only for bears?

After a minute he turned and took a couple of steps away, snorting indignantly. Then with three effortless jumps, he disapeared in the trees. I got an impression he had springs for legs.

It took me a couple of minutes to relax and head back to the house.

Note to self… Tomorrows walk will be taken in the open, empty farm field next door.

oct pic. leaves have fallen off
Tall grass hidding deer

Male deer are called bucks, bulls, stags or harts. Female deer are called does, cows or hinds. Young deer are called fawns or calfs.~ http://www.veganpeace.com/animal_facts/Deer.htm

April poem a day challenge!~

 I haven’t posted since the end of the Haiku challenge. I have been busy, busy, busy- pulling my hair out and wondering what sort of blockage is holding my muse for ransom..

Then a couple of days ago I stumbled on an article, then lost it later or I would post the link here:-( That article was an interview with a new author  he or she was asked when the next book would be out, the writer said “never!” That writing that one book was horrible, he/she had no life and the mental distress it caused him/her was over whelming.  I had a good laugh, then pulled out my crumpled up chapters and started over.

“You must keep sending work out; you must never let a manuscript do nothing but eat its head off in a drawer. You send that work out again and again, while you’re working on another one. If you have talent, you will receive some measure of success – but only if you persist.”
~Isaac Asimov    I also decided to make an attempt at a daily poem for April- April is the month for a poem a day challenge. I wrote a little blurb on the examiner.http://www.examiner.com/writing-179-in-chicago/gerardine-baugh I started-I am following, Poetic Asides by Robert Lee Brewerhttp://blog.writersdigest.com/poeticasides/


I have been sending my submissions to him through email, instead of posting on his site in the comments section. But today, I will post that poem here, and on his Blog.


I don’t get feedback by emailing him, I really don’t even know if he is getting the emails. I wanted to keep some poems unpublished, and that would be done by entering his poem a day challenge by email and not on a public forum.


I have great admiration for William, his muse never sleeps. http://www.williamm49.blogspot.com/


Uriah is doing well, he wants the weather to warm up so pecan go hunting rabbits  not that he ever caught one.




For April 4, 2011, Robert’s instructions were to “pick a type of person and write a poem about him or her”

I picked it apart so many times I didn’t know what I started with, I cut it up to only a few words then decided on the longer version.


Without further ado here’s todays poem.


By Gerardine Baugh

None is more obvious than in the stance of a teenager waiting for the morning bus,

Dragging her feet across the gravel driveway she stops and stares down the road, facing away from the winds that burned her cheeks and lodged dust in her hair and eyes.

With a heavy sigh she brushes hair from her face she was hoping for a few quiet minutes on the bus to study for an algebra test, all but forgotten last night, opting instead to spend hours on the phone texting about guys.

The bus pulled to a squealing stop floating heads lean asleep against the windows no one is talking that morning ritual was left back at middle school when everyone was a chattering cercocebus.

Now excited banter is used on the ride home, an unspoken rule set by upperclassmen studying or partying or sleeping in unison, until they wake up to off color humor and mistrusts.

In one fluid movement she sets her book bag on her lap as she takes the last empty seat behind the driver hoping for a day free of surprises.

Fishing around in her bag she pockets change for the cafeteria, and pulls out a math book falling into its pages unaffected by her growling stomach and the erratic rocking of the school bus.

Finished National Novel Writing Month, NaNoWriMo then I got sick

Hello, everyone! I finished the NaNoWriMo , with 50,163 words.  Articles with writing tips, on the Examiner, totaled out at 9,508 words.


Add in the thirty videos, and I had a busy month.

 Then I got sick, and posted this video. Cold medicine makes me loopy.