Another week is done and we still have no rain here in Phoenix.

I guess Tucson just south of us received some showery blessing but that’s still a big “No” from us here in the valley. We’re still a giant heat bubble pushing away that which is the most beneficial to us desert rats.There’s something poetic here, but I’m not classy enough to put the pieces and metaphors together.

All we can do is stay inside, pray to the sun god not to kill us, and use as much A/C as our wallets permit.

Hello, welcome to my Weeknotes for July 6 to July 13.

Book writing is a slow, arduous process and I don’t recommend anyone try it ever again unless they want their glass heart repeatedly shattered with a rusty hammer which was probably used in at least 9 previous murders.

So book writing is going well.

Since I took the initiative to move the deadline of Project: BIANCA back another month, now due at the end of July, it’s become a little easier to breathe. Real life got in the way, as it wants to do, so I needed to adjust. Make time. Make space. After all, the whole reason I’m doing what I’m doing is because I wanted to be my own boss.

But then house hunting started.

My wife and I are expecting twins (no, we don’t know what they are yet) in the middle of December so a move was required. Didn’t think raising two baby-something-or-others in a 4th floor apartment in downtown Phoenix would have been too pleasant for our bank accounts.

Or our downstairs neighbors.

The stomping. Good lord, can you imagine?

This brings up the topic of real-world responsibilities vs. writing commitments. I committed to writing at least 1,500 words a day for the book, sometimes more, sometimes less, but always in that ballpark. However, for 3 days straight, I wasn’t afforded any time to sit and write…

I did, however, take that time to start training to defeat all the Master Trainers in Pokémon : Let’s Go Pikachu.

…You don’t need to slap me in the face. Obviously, that’s where my writing time should be.

I think I believe the Pokémon time is me unwinding, relaxing, and I guess in many ways I should still be doing that. After all, if the gasket blows on this body that’s it, there’s no more writing for anyone.

But maybe I don’t need to relax and catch 120 Rattata to max out the state of the one Rattata I have. Maybe I draw the line at 80 Rattata, take that 30 minutes I saved, and write.


I surpassed 100 #7SecondShortStories this week on my Instagram.

For those that may not know, as a daily writing warm-up, I post short stories on my Instagram feed which disappear after 7 seconds. The challenge is to try and condense a cohesive narrative into a few lines, something that will leave the audience chomping at the bits, wanting to know more, but knowing exactly enough to be satisfied. It’s a fun challenge and I’m going to continue at least until I hit story # 365.

As part of the week long celebration I decided to do one narrative over the course of seven days. One part, each day. All together, to read the entire story, it should theoretically take only 49 seconds.

49 seconds to tell a story.

For your consideration, here it is:

The Spiderwick Chronicles: The Field Guide and The Seeing Stone by Tony DiTerlizzi and Holly Black (Goodreads)


I, like I’m sure a lot of you, only have experience with this franchise through that very underwhelming movie that came out back in the mid-00s when every young adult fantasy series was being bought up and turned into movies to try and compete with the juggernaut that was/is the Harry Potter franchise.

Got even the slightest bit of magic in ye, even if ye aren’t a story centered around it and true darkness comes from our own twisted hears? Come ‘ere! Here’s a subpar trailer that’ll make you look more exciting and goofy than your tale really is!

Not sure where that came from.

I loved these first two books. I devoured them both in a day.

The Grace family has just moved out of the city, escaping a messy divorce and troubled times at school. Jared, one half of a group of twins, is having trouble adjusting while his fencing enthusiastic older sister and animal obsessed twin brother don’t seem to mind. He thinks he’s discovered some kind of book revealing the existence of magical creatures.


Now, that’s much different than “fairies,” and both DiTerlizzi and Black hold no punches when it comes to the fae’s representation. There’s a darker edge here as the Grace children try to figure out how to live in this new world they’ve tripped into. While their mother is blind to a lot of the shenanigans wrecking their old house, only Jared and his siblings know what’s going on and will do whatever they can to stop it.

The darker edge instilled in this story by killing and the fear of death doesn’t dampen the tale of three siblings who do not get along needing to come together to survive. There’s no fairy-tale ending, where they all realize they need each other and are totally fine. On the contrary. By story’s end all of them still have a general dislike for one another, but realize they need each other to survive.

Not sure how the movie didn’t get that. Just watch the preview of the film on Netflix when you leave the screen stationary on the thumbnail and see that it’s NOT the vibe they were going for.

Ignore the movie.

Read the books.


Found this in old blog of mine. Decided to re-share to kick-start the week:

The thing that clicked for me was the number, just a number. One page edited, two pages edited, then three, then eight. Sheets were piling up and I felt better and better, and suddenly, the new mantra took hold. The second one I’ll keep telling myself as I keep working on finishing my manuscript to submit to agents:

“Filling up notebooks and emptying pens is more important than if my writing is ‘good.’”

Telling yourself either of these mantras is hard, as that is the inherent nature of mantras. But I’m gonna keep repeating them to myself, over and over again, as I keep working towards my dreams.

Join me.

My favorite author is me.

Filling up notebooks and emptying pens is more important than if my writing is “good.”

And that’s it.

I’m out. Expect Sunday to be the day from now on when Weeknotes goes live. It’s definitely a lot easier and soul-cleansing than doing it on a Monday.

Don’t find the time.

Make the time.

I’ll see you next week.

Thanks for reading,

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Twitter: @robacosta

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