WQW – Walter Mosley and My Word Garden

Thanks to Colleen over at Silver Threading for facilitating this weekly community event.

Image courtesy of Gratisography.
Image courtesy of Gratisography

If you want to be a writer. You have to write every day … You don’t go to a well once but daily. You don’t skip a child’s breakfast or forget to wake up in the morning …

– Walter Mosley

Walter Mosley is not the only famous author to advise aspiring writers to write every day. Countless others have offered the very same advice from Ernest Hemingway to Annie Lamott and Stephen King, the message worded differently centers around a universal theme. To be a writer, you have to write.

It is a simple truth. Any craftsman must practice their craft – musician, athlete, painter, writer, graphic designer – there really is no difference to excel at a chosen endeavor you must work at it consistently. You must have … what is that word … discipline. And for me (and others too) that is the problem. The only thing I am disciplined at is P-R-O-C-R-A-S-T-I-N-A-T-I-O-N.

Yet during the last several weeks, I have been writing nearly every day. I feel invigorated by the act of putting pen to paper (and finger to keyboard) and writing. Some of what I have written, I have used and some I have not. I wrote an entire post for my all but abandoned First Sunday Series only to decide that I wasn’t ready to share that particular church experience with my readers. I may at a later date revisit that post or I may not. I may only have needed to write that post for me so I can move on to the next post. And that’s okay.

Since I started blogging as a vehicle to make me write more, I am beginning to view my blog like a gardener views her garden. Instead of flowers or vegetables, words and stories flourish in my garden. Like any garden, my word garden needs to be tended daily. Weeding, watering, planting seeds, and turning the soil encourage flowers to grow. And so it is with my word garden. If I tend to my blog daily, whether that be by:

  • writing a post;
  • reading other blogs;
  • commenting on other blogs;
  • responding to comments made on my blog;
  • re-blogging both from my archives and other blogs;
  • participating in social media hashtag days;
  • developing a social media plan;
  • creating (and using) an editorial calendar;
  • interacting and engaging with my social media audience; or
  • researching information for a blog post,

my blog should flourish.

So although Walter Mosley’s advice is well spot on, it is not for me, not just yet. For the next three to six months, I have decided to commit to tending to my blog daily with the intent that daily focus will cultivate a not too distant future practice of daily writing.


Image of author courtesy of his Facebook page.

Walter Ellis Mosley is an American author and novelist best known as a writer of crime fiction. Personally, I was never a fan of crime fiction until a friend introduced me to Mosley and his most well-known character Easy Rawlins.   Once I started reading Mosley’s work, I couldn’t wait for his next book to be published. Even when Mosley shook up his fan base when he published Always Outnumbered, Always Outgunned in 1997 introducing his readers to Socrates Forlow, an inner-city philosopher, and deviating away from Easy Rawlins until the release of Bad Boy Brawly Brown in 2002,   I anxiously awaited the release of every book Mosley penned.

Mosley, who is a prolific writer sometimes publishing multiple books in a given year, began writing at the age of 34 and continues to write every day.  Mosley, who was born on January 12, 1952 in Los Angeles, is the son of a Jewish mother and African-American father.  Mosley, who identifies with both his Jewish and African-American sides, resists the need of others to label him either as a Jewish or African-American novelist and prefers to label himself as simply a novelist.

Key Dates in Walter Mosley’s Timeline

1952       Walter Ellis Mosley born in Los Angeles to Ella (née Slatkin) and Leroy Mosley

1981       Mosley moves to New York

1987       Marries Joy Kellman.

1990       Devil in a Blue Dress – Easy Rawlins Mystery published.

1991       A Red Death – Easy Rawlins Mystery published.

1992       Then presidential candidate Bill Clinton names Mosley as one of his favorite authors.

1992       White Butterfly – Easy Rawlins Mystery published.

1994       Black Betty Easy Rawlins Mystery published.

1995       Devil in a Blue Dress was made into a movie with Denzel Washington cast as Easy Rawlins

1995       RL’s Dream published.

1996       A Little Yellow Dog – Easy Rawlins Mystery published.

1996       Received Black Caucus of the American Library Association’s Literary Award for RL’s Dream.

1996       Received O. Henry Award for a Socrates Fortlow story.

1997       Gone Fishin’ – Easy Rawlins Mystery published. Made publishing history by foregoing an advance to give the manuscript to a small, independent publisher, Black Classic Press.

1997      Always Outnumbered, Always Outgunned – Socrates Fortlow book published.

1998       Always Outnumbered was made into a movie starring Lawrence Fishburne as Socrates Fortlow.

1998       Blue Light published.

1999       Walkin’ the Dog – Socrates Fortlow book published.

1999       Working on the Chain Gang: Shaking Off the Dead Hand of History published.

2000       The Greatest published.

2001       Divorces Joy Kellman.

2001       Fearless Jones – Fearless Jones Mystery published.

2001       Futureland – Short Story Collection published.

2002       Bad Boy Brawly Brown – Easy Rawlins Mystery published.

2003       Six Easy Pieces – Easy Rawlins Mystery published.

2003       Fear Itself – Fearless Jones Mystery published.

2003       What Next: A Memoir Toward World Peace published.

2004       Little Scarlet – Easy Rawlins Mystery published.

2004       The Man in My Basement published.

2005       Cinnamon Kiss – Easy Rawlins Mystery published.

2005      Received “Risktaker Award” from the Sundance Institute for both his creative and activist efforts.

2005       47 published.

2006       Fear of the Dark – Fearless Jones Mystery published.

2006       Fortunate Son published.

2006       Killing Johnny Fry published.

2006       The Wave published.

2006       Life Out of Context published.

2007       Blonde Faith – Easy Rawlins Mystery published.

2007       The Year You Write Your Novel published.

2008       The Right Mistake – Socrates Fortlow Book published.

2008       The Tempest Tales published.

2008       Diablerie published.

2009       The Long Fall – Leonid McGill Mystery published.

2010       Known to Evil – Leonid McGill Mystery published.

2010       The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey published.

2010       The Fall of Heaven, Mosley’s first play, was staged in Cincinnati, Ohio.

2011       When the Thrill is Gone – Leonid McGill Mystery published.

2011       Twelve Steps Toward Political Revelation published.

2012       All I Did Was Shoot My Man – Leonid McGill Mystery published.

2012       Gift of Fire published.

2012       On the Head of a Pin published.

2012       Merge published.

2012       Disciple published.

2012       Parishioner published.

2013       Little Green – Easy Rawlins Mystery published.

2013       Inducted into the New York Writers Hall of Fame.

2013       Odyssey published.

2014       Rose Gold ­- Easy Rawlins Mystery published.

2014       Debbie Doesn’t Do It Anymore published.

2014       Jack Strong: A Story of Life After Life published.

2015       And Sometimes I Wonder About You – Leonid McGill Mystery published.

2015       Inside a Silver Box published.

Additional biographical information on Walter Mosley can be found on his Wikipedia page or his official website. For a complete listing of Walter Mosley’s work visit his website.  Walter Mosley maintains a social media presence only on Facebook.

4 thoughts on “WQW – Walter Mosley and My Word Garden

  1. Way to go, Lynn! Good quote and your writing goals sound perfect for you. Baby steps are always fine. It will be good to see more of you. 💗😊


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