Friday, October 28, 2011

The Waiting is the Hardest Part

Sorry about cribbing Tom Petty; if it's any consolation, I'll have that song stuck in my head for the rest of the day.

The good news is that my story "A Fairy for Bin Laden," is *still* under consideration at Apex. I have to take that as a good sign, and not imagine that the editor reading the story picked up before he left for vacation last Friday . . . not thinking about that, not thinking . . .

I have another story up for critique on, but haven't received any useful feedback yet. Hopefully, I'll get some ideas on how to revamp what I've come to view as a story that needs a kick in the ass.

I'm still cranking on the novel. I read of a writing tool called Scrivener, and downloaded a demo; it's great for drafting and organization. A side benefit is that you can view stats and sections in parts or as a whole; what really floored me is that I'm at 52,000 words, and don't feel it's half done. I can't believe I've made it this far.

I can only echo the advice I've read many, many times at this point: keep putting black on white, every day. Cheers.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Dare I Hope?

I received notice yesterday that an editor at Apex had read my story "A Fairy for Bin Laden." I didn't immediately receive a rejection, like I had in the past with similar submissions, so I have cause for hope.

I checked the status this morning, and saw it was "under consideration." Dare I hope?

I've tried to put submissions out of my mind until they have been processed. Lately, I've been banging away on pieces of my fantasy novel; I can't say for sure how good the pieces are in first draft, but banging out a thousand words at at time of decent quality seems to be coming easier and easier, as I imagine it would.

Now if only that pesky first sale would come . . .

Friday, October 7, 2011


"A Fairy for Bin Laden" was rejected by Clarkesworld magazine; I spent a few days editing and cut a few hundred words, and submitted to Apex.

Interestingly, I joined, a SF & H critique group, (I sent in "O'Reilly's Sacrifice", since I seem to have a blind spot on that story's flaws), which somehow led to me dusting off that old fantasy novel I was writing last year. I banged out 2,000 words in two days, including nearly 600 just on the train ride home last night.

I keep coming across advice regarding persistence and "keep putting black on white."

Good advice.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Practice Makes Perfect

Not perfect, per se, but definitely better and faster. It's amazing what happens once you establish a regular schedule and routine; I sat down to bang out an idea for a new short story I had, tentatively titled "Y Marks the Spot,", about a female assasin who has tiny nanomachines in her blood that are triggered by the Y sex chromosome in men.

Before I knew it, 1200 words had poured out.

No, I'm not getting sucked into the "Novel in a Month" thingy . . .

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Submission Time

I finished polishing a 6700 word short story, "A Fairy for Bin Laden," yesterday afternoon and submitted it to Fantasy Magazine.

It only took them a day to reject it; I did notice that they use a form letter: the content was identical to a rejection from a month or so ago of the first story I had the nerve to submit for publication.

It's a nice and gentle rejection letter, all in all.

Within the hour, I turned around and submitted it for Clarkesworld consideration.

I keep telling myself that all writers have been rejected, from J.K Rowling to Hemingway; I just need to have faith in myself and stay level-headed and persistent.

A new story is in the works, about a female assassin with deadly nanotech in her blood.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Commitment, Action

(Takes a deep breath)
I'm going to write, dammit, and I'm going to be published. I've been a voracious reader all my long life, and a closet writer for just about as long. I will do this.

What prompted this? In a word: rejection.

A few months ago I dusted off the concept of a short story I wrote about 20 years ago, about a rabid Boston Red Sox fan who attempts to lift the "Curse of the Bambino" from the team in 2004, after the eighty-some years of inexplicable bad fortune that followed the team's sale of Babe Ruth to the Yankees.

I thought the story was pretty good. I submitted to Fantasy Magazine. It was politely rejected.

Clarksworld. Rejected.

Apex. Rejected.

Maybe the story wasn't so good. I determined to try again.

Over the past few weeks I've been squeezing a few hours here and there writing a story about a fairy named Tinkerbelle who helps in the hunt for Osama Bin Laden. It's been a fun ride, and I can see already the results of practice; it's a much better piece of work.

We'll see what happens when I finish it, polish it, and push it out into the cruel world.

It's writing, dammit.

To channel Yoda: "There is no try; do or do not."

Here we go.