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Sunday, September 25, 2011

Guest Post: Scott Nicholson + Give Away

(click on Scott's theme music while reading the intro)

I Smell Sheep is one of the blogs helping Scott giving away 15% of his ebook sales for the whole month of Sept., really! Click on his face to visit his site where you can find a list of participating blogs, info on his books (offered at amazing prices). The more you spread the word about his books, the more he sells, the more his gives away! 

We asked him to stop by and talk about...books and writing. I know, right?! There is a give away for his screenplay The Gorge at the end. Can you say long-hidden, bloodthirsty vampire creatures? Oh, yes you can!

Stories, Novels, and Novellas: Oh My!
By Scott Nicholson

Scott looking writerly
The Shepherds asked me to pontificate on the differences between short stories, novels, and novellas, and I could be a smarmy, sarcastic twit and say “Size matters,” but the truth is, each type of writing has its own challenges and purpose.

Short stories are a sprint, and I often write mine in a day or two, because I feel the hot rush of the idea, and often I will be a little more experimental, or use a narrative voice that would get too tiresome over 400 pages but is fresh and effective for fifteen. And a short story also gives you a chance to get outside your comfort zone, both as a reader and a writer. One of the great things about the ebook era is that shorter works are very convenient. When I read my Kindle, nobody glares at me in the afterschool pick-up line the way they do when I read a paperback!

Novellas usually fall in the range of 100 to 200 pages, or 20,000 to 40,00 words, and while these forms didn’t have many opportunities in the old paper era, the digital era is creating great popularity for them. I have three out and they usually sell as well or better than my novels, and are great for digesting in just a few sit-downs. But you don’t have room for as many settings or characters, so it’s usually a form that is stripped down and lean.

Novels tends to sprawl more, and also the longer form can unfold themes that are impossible in shorter works. Usually there are more characters, often with shifting points of view, and the amount of time elapsing in the story is often longer, sometimes even years, decades, or centuries. Of course, some novels run more than a thousand pages, so it can be a serious time commitment, but a novel is a journey unlike any other in fiction. A good novel will leave you changed from when you started on that first page.

However you like to read, whatever you like to read, just do it and share it!
Scott Nicholson is giving away 15 percent of his ebook revenues in September! Details are at or in his newsletter. Nicholson is author of The Skull Ring, Speed Dating with the Dead, Drummer Boy, and nine other novels, seven story collections, and six screenplays. have heard of Scott, but haven't read any of his work yet. What is a Sheep to do? I suggest trying his short story collection Head Cases. I've read it and loved it, and I Smell Sheep is the official sponsor of this book so we get 5% of the sale! If you are interested in a novel, I've read The Red Church and Speed Dating With the Dead and recommend those. He also writes a YA series and children's books!

****Give Away****

Scott is offering away an e-copy of his screenplay The Gorge to a winner.


Bowie Whitlock and a team of celebrity athletes are commissioned to test two experimental rafts in the rugged Unegama Wilderness Gorge in the remote Appalachian Mountains, considered the most dangerous whitewater rapids in the eastern United States. The expedition is tense from the start as jealousy, romance, and money are riding on the mission's success.

FBI agent Jim Castle and his partner are in the gorge looking for Ace Goodall, a deranged abortion clinic bomber. Ace, accompanied by a fragile young woman, is having visions that guide his murderous behavior. A trip-wire around his camp detonates a rigged explosive, tearing apart part of a cliff wall and exposing a long-hidden vampire species to the world.

The race is on as dark storm clouds gather, the river is swollen, and Ace hijacks the rafting expedition to make his escape. But the bloodthirsty creatures swooping down from the high cliffs have been too long without prey.

Ace has one more bomb.
God is talking to him.
It's raining again, and his young companion is pregnant.
And killing isn't what it used to be, because the dead no longer stay dead.

To Enter:
1. Share this post, somewhere! FB, Twitter, call your mother, just share :)
2. Tell us in the comments how you shared (sheep's honor guys)


  1. Great post I love the new age for the Novella and short story, I have no problem paying .99 cents for either as long as i'm entertained.

  2. well, it shows up on my blog on Wednesday in lot's-o-links #13 ;)

  3. I told my sister about it and I put it on twitter!!


  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

  5. contest closed. The winner is: Tammi!!! I have sent you a message via FB