Welcome to the Narrative Niche Neighbor
Check out the Narrative Niche on the Nextdoor App!
Hello, my name is Jason Kurtz, and this is an invitation to visit the Narrative Niche blog and website. Narrative Niche is a website for writers, but since entertainment is one of the site’s main objectives, the Narrative Niche is for everyone, including YOU! Narrative Niche also offers writing services for almost anything you need to have written—from poems and letters to children’s stories and biographies, and everything in between.
I was born in Casper, Wyoming in 1973, but moved to Grand Junction, Colorado when I was about two or three, so I have no conscious recollection of that place. I grew up on the Redlands and attended Scenic Elementary (when they were the Cougars, not the Big Birds lol), Cornerstone Christian School, Orchard Mesa Middle, and Fruita Monument High. I did not graduate in 1992 with my class, but instead, aced my GED and headed straight to then Mesa State College to pursue a career in teaching English.
That course ended abruptly after one semester, when my first son Kaleb was born with hypoplastic left heart syndrome in January of 1994. He was a chunky baby, almost nine pounds, which turned out to be a blessing, because he would need all the strength he could muster for the next three months. The doctors at St. Mary’s gave us two options—1) take Kaleb home and wait and see how he does, or 2) have him take Flight for Life to Children’s Hospital in Denver. Well, duh…
Kaleb’s story is a long and happy one and I am very proud and blessed that he is my son, however, this is a blurb for Narrative Niche, so I’ll get back to it. Kaleb’s mother and I got married right after high school, and after being assured that Kaleb's defect was not hereditery, tried for a girl three more times. Apparently, I didn’t have any girls that could swim, and we were blessed with three more boys—Collin (27), Carter (25), and Kamden (22). We bought our first house, lived there for a couple of years, and then bought a brand-new house that wasn’t even built yet. I even pulled the lumber packs for my own house at Alpine! Anyway, the happy family life was great, and I’ll cherish it forever, but like my 18-year career at Alpine, some things are not meant to last forever, and neither did that marriage.
Do I have regrets? Of course I do. Did I make mistakes, and would I do things differently if I had a second chance? Well, hell yes, I did, and sure I would. The divorce took a pretty big toll on this, embarrassed to say, sensitive guy, and I got to one of my lowest points in life. Not even a year later, I moved back to GJ with a friend who I’d known since middle school, and who helped pull me out of the quicksand, and also to be around my family. Ten years later that friend, Dawn Ulibarri, and I got married and now we’re a mixed family with five sons—Dawn’s son Sean (27) is in the military and is currently deployed overseas, and that’s all I can say about that. If you have family serving our country, you know the drill.
There I go again. I tried to get back on track and started rambling on about me and my life. I promise, I’m not a narcissist, I just play one when I’m writing. Hey, if you want a character to be genuine, sometimes you have to be that character. Just like I had to do in my novel about the serial killer who goes around… Wait! No, I never wrote a novel about a serial killer, and I didn’t play the character out in real life by... Dang it! Why isn’t my delete button working? I hope no cops are reading this…
Mysterious Ways Update
I’m sorry for making a long story longer, but now you have some background on who is behind the Narrative Niche. I stayed in lumber for a couple more years here in GJ at 84 Lumber, then did the Fed Ex thing for about seven years, and I’m currently working at the busiest place in the great City of Fruita, Colorado, where I’m happy and writing up a storm these days. I started writing my first novel, Mysterious Ways, a sci-fi thriller that takes place in a fictional western Colorado county, in May 2022, and finished the first draft in January 2023. I am proud of myself for trudging through until the end, but that involved always writing ahead and not looking back, which has made editing the first draft quite a challenge. As soon as I finished the first draft, I went through all 129,230 words, 448 pages, 35 chapters, and 157 scenes (I broke the novel down to the scene level in hopes that it would make moving parts around easier, which it definitely has) and corrected most of the things that Word suggested. I say most because some of Word’s edits are just plain wrong.
I finished editing the grammar mistakes in one sitting (a couple of hours), but I’ve been struggling to fill in the gaps and put the pieces together of the actual story for… What is today? Wow, exactly a year. And wouldn’t you know it? Today, January 19, is Kaleb’s birthday! Well how about that! Happy Birthday Kaleb! Wait… are you 30 today? OMG!!! Kaleb just keeps popping up in this story, doesn’t he?
Writer's Workshop in the Works
Okay, let’s see if I can keep on task for more than one sentence. Squirrel! Squirrel? Where? Squirrel? So I am still editing the first draft, now 139,500 words and 164 scenes, but I have since started some other writing projects, as if editing a novel wasn’t enough. In April of 2023, I started the Narrative Niche website and blog, a product of my being unemployed for nine months in between jobs. I’m also developing an online novel writing course called the (NarrativeNicheNineClassNovelNavigationCourse—NNNCNNC) that contains nine classes with five lessons each, on topics such as Worldbuilding, POV, and Character Development, and covers everything from the idea for the story to finishing the first draft. As I am yet to be published, that’s as far as my own experience will allow me to teach. Some good news though, I already have more than half of the lessons planned and partially written, thanks to some help from my AI friends—shh…
Sidekick and Story Bible App
And, speaking of AI (that’s artificial intelligence for those of you who are out of the loop), I’ve been dabbling in the text-to-image and image-to-image phenomenon, creating character profiles and images of scenes from the story to put in a “side-piece” to the hardback copy, called the Sidekick!, which is a condensed version of the story in graphic novel style, with character profile sheets, facts and conspiracies hidden in the book, maps, games, etc. So yes, that is another time-consuming, but creative, project that I am working on. Not to mention, I created, out of necessity, a Story Bible in Excel that has different worksheets for things like characters, locations, and timelines. With 20 main characters and over 70 in all, some are only “mentions”, and lots of locations, times, directions, clothing, and on and on, I had to create a spreadsheet to keep track of it all. One worksheet became three, and then I started adding things like images, hyperlinks, and drop-down menus, and now, it’s basically a personalized app for my novel, and I intend to create just that—a story organizer app to offer for free, as an incentive, or even market it and sell it, who knows?
Sequels and Series?
Yeah, so there’s that, and then, typical of my perfectionist, overachiever, Virgo, INTJ ways, I’ve started planning the sequel. Yes folks, we cannot just stop with one, we must have more! Seasons Two, Three, and Four! Give us more! More than four! We want more! We need more! More sex and more gore! Oh God, give us more!—Oh, sorry about that, it just slipped out. Squirrel!
Grammar Gadgets Series
Seriously though, what I’ve probably spent the most of my writing time, which lately, has been every minute that I’m not working or sleeping (sorry babe—she’s a trooper), because lately, I’ve been wearing out my welcome in Blogsville. I try to post something new, at least once every two weeks, sometimes more, sometimes less, but it is a lot more work than one would think, keeping a blog and website current, that is. The blog has a series called Grammar Gadgets, which discusses one or two literary devices in depth and provides tips and proper usage for the figures of speech.
The Danger Zone
I encourage and promote writing, and offer anyone the opportunity to share their writing or artwork on the blog. If the writing or artwork fits the theme of the site and is approved, that person can become a collaborator. My friend David Danger joined the team, and he has so much crap to share, that we’re creating a new segment called, “The Danger Zone”!
The Copy Shop Offers Quality Writing Services
Now, for the reason I started writing this introduction for Nextdoor, and the point where YOU come in: Narrative Niche offers professional writing services for almost all of your writing needs! Don’t have time to write that neighborhood newsletter? Do you have children? How about a new bedtime story with colorful, high-quality illustrations? Maybe you are living in your Golden Years and would like to have your biography written, or you want to compile all your recipes in one, easy-to-access file. Narrative Niche can even help you create your own website or blog, or edit that school report that’s due in three days.
The Narrative Niche provides high quality, plagiarism-free content, written in English, with references and citation included. Documents also include topic research, 1 keyword, 1 JPG/PNG image, and 1 free revision. Just go to www.narrativeniche.com and click on The Copy Shop! While you’re there, take a look around the site and please let me know what you think on the Contact page. Here is the Narrative Niche Vision statement:
The vision of Narrative Niche is to be a site that serves as a hub for writers of all ages, styles, and levels of experience. The blog aims to provide thought-provoking and informative content that educates, entertains, and inspires readers. Narrative Niche is maintained by donations and funds generated through its offering of premium quality writing services. Narrative Niche strives to exceed client expectations and provide impactful, thoroughly researched content that connects with audiences. Narrative Niche backs up its strong commitment to nurturing talent and skill, by offering engaging online writing classes to students, educators, and new writers, helping them unlock their potential and excel in the art of writing. I’m Jason Kurtz, owner of Narrative Niche, and I envision a future where this blog and website is synonymous with quality writing and creativity, and a place where students, clients, and readers alike share their ideas and are ultimately empowered to achieve their writing goals and master the craft of writing.