Thursday, March 29, 2012

Revision Day Goal Met!

The special Revision Day has gone well so far. I've:
  • Made rather significant revisions to a 1300 word fantasy story. I'm waiting on a couple of critique partner feedbacks, and then I'll make any final revisions and send this one out.
  • Took a second pass through a roughly 4000 word science fiction story. This one probably will need some more work, but it's ready to send to critique partners for feedback.
  • Revised an 1100 word science fiction story based on comments from a couple dozen critiquers. I didn't make major changes, but did address the concerns which I'd seen in the critiques that felt most pertinent. This one will go out today.
Since I've met the stated goal, I'm going to take a short break to do some submission/resubmission work. I've been lax about this for about a week, so I've got close to ten stories that need to get back out the door. If I get that done in a timely fashion, I might just see if I can tackle a fourth story today as well.

Revision Day New Words Waiver

Thursday 3/29 is the day which I've made as my "revision day", as defined in my March monthly goals.
"Have a short story revising day where I get at least three stories into a form where I am ready to send them out for beta or submission."
I'm giving myself a one day waiver from my daily writing chain. If I meet that goal, getting three stories ready to go on to their next "level", then I'll check off my "500 words" box in my chain for the day. Of course, Friday, it's right back to the new words routine but this will be a little reward for getting a lot of work done on stories which need some attention.

I'll put up a post late Thursday or on Friday to let you all know how Revising Day 1.0 goes for me. Wish me luck!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Monday March 26th #writemotivation Weekly Status

This is the last Monday in March, so it's the last "official" #writemotivation checkin for the month. Even with everything that's not gone to plan this month, the past weekend made this a fantastic writing month for me with a total of three short fiction sales, including my first ever "professional rate" sale. Both of the other two sales are semi-pro rate sales to Kazka Press, one for their monthly themed flash fiction contest and one for their monthly unthemed longer short story contest. Each of these latter two are scheduled to be released on April 1st, so in under a week, I'll have two shiny new links to add to my Publications page.

1) Read my first draft of "Adrift" and create something akin to a "beat sheet" for it. - Once again, this isn't happening this month. I suspect I won't create an "Adrift"-related goal for April, simply because I have no reason to believe my schedule is going to get any easier next month than it has been this month. As I've said before, I do want to return to this sometime, but when I have limited writing time as I currently do, coming back to this is not at the top of my priority list.
2) Have a short story revising day where I get at least three stories into a form where I am ready to send them out for beta or submission. - I've got Thursday scheduled off work. Unless I have too many other things which I have to tackle on Thursday, this will be revising day. Can I get three stories done in that day? We'll see. It's a bit of an ambitious goal.
3) Write 7,500 words of new fiction including at least one new short story. - Probably not happening at this point, though I did complete multiple flash-length (under 1000 words) stories.
4) Keep all my writing routines -- Seinfeld Chain, revised blogging schedule, etc. - Still going strong here. There are lots of days when I've only gotten that bare minimum of 500 words in for my daily writing chain, but I have kept it alive.
5) On 3/31, have one non-time-sensitive blog post written and ready for future use on a day when I'm not able to post something "new." - No updates on this. I still have two which are nearly done that I just need to finish up. It's simply a matter of actually getting it done, and there's no good reason not to get it done.
6) Write and submit one or more short stories for the first time. - Done.
7) Decide if I am going to attend Marcon (a local science-fiction convention) in April or not. - Also done. The answer is "no." I'll still look for another convention to attend this year.
8) Complete a first draft of my non-fiction project. - Well, I had thought that the main portion of the work was done last week, but I was mistaken. I actually had a bit more to add. That's part of what I've done this week. I've also started on the Bonus Features and lined up someone to do a "sanity check" on the first draft of the main portion. I feel good about the progress here.

Looking back on my words from last week, I find it interesting to see how a few days can change things. I had said: "I haven't had any large successes yet, but I've had small successes and [...] believe that the large successes are possible with perseverance and effort. I fully intend to keep on pushing through towards those large successes."

Little did I know just how close I was.

Congrats to everyone who made progress towards their goals this month and thank you, very much, for your kind words and encouragement. It really does mean a lot.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Sunday Links & The Week in #storyeachnight: March 25, 2012 Edition

The last two days saw (among quite a few rejection emails) a pair of very exciting emails. The first, on Friday, was one from Nature indicating that they were interested in buying one of my stories for their "Futures" feature. This was exciting for any number of reasons, three of the chief ones being that this will easily be the largest readership any of my writing has ever been exposed to, it will be my first print publication in my return to writing, and it will be my first sale to a Science Fiction Writers of America (SFWA) qualifying market, making me eligible to join as an Associate member. Needless to say, I'm happy.

Saturday, I received an email from a semi-pro market indicating that they were interested in buying one of my stories as well. I've been asked to make some minor revisions, which I have agreed in principal to do and will be working on later today. This one is exciting to me because it's my first non-flash sale in my return to writing and it represents the sale of a story which I am particularly fond of -- it's easily my favorite of the stories I wrote towards the tail end of last summer. I'm not naming the market yet since the revisions still need to be made and accepted. I've no reason to expect this will pose difficulty, but since it would be awkward for both parties if it did pose difficulty, I'll wait to share any more details on this until the revisions are accepted and the contract signed.

It's certainly nice to have some good news to share here!

Here are the stories I read for #storyeachnight this week; I did get a nice string of four nights in a row, though it's been far from "each" night recently:

3/18 - None
3/19 - "Ride-Along" by Brendan Dubois from THE BEST AMERICAN MYSTERY STORIES 2011. I was a bit underwhelmed by this one. Lots of it felt too heavily telegraphed. Writing was good enough that it was still decent but I wasn't wowed.
3/20 - "Memories of My Mother" by Ken Liu from DAILY SCIENCE FICTION. Well-told story of relativistic travel and one family. That said, I've read several relativistic travel stories recently & am not in a rush to read another. No fault of the author. (* My favorite of the week.)
3/21 - "I Am Nano" by Sean Monaghan from ASIM #52. A story of nanobots gaining sentience.
3/22 - "Who Killed Skippy?" by Paul D Brazill from NOIR NATION #1. Entertaining story about a family business & a dead kangaroo.
3/23 - None
3/24 - None

And now, here are this week's links:

Thursday, March 22, 2012

How Twitter Works For Writers

Back in 2009, I decided that I should look into the whole social media "thing." To that point, though I'd been an active web user since its very early days and an active computer message board user back into the 1980s, I hadn't gotten involved with MySpace, LinkedIn, Facebook, etc. So, with our usual summer lull around here (fewer activities to drive our children to, no classes for my wife to attend) I decided to put some time into seeing what social media was about. I signed up for Facebook, played around with Twitter some, and started a blog. Of the three, only Facebook "took" back then. I stopped both blogging and actively tweeting late that summer, though I did get back onto Twitter before too long, primarily to chat about hockey.

Fast-forward to the summer of 2011. I dive head-first back into the world of writing and, while doing so, I start this blog and also begin to use Twitter for having writing-related conversations. Both have been very important to me during the past half-year. The blog has been great for giving me an opportunity to think about writing topics in some detail and have discussions which go more in depth. Twitter, on the other hand, is much more casual and "social" and has been a great place for making connections with other writers for the purposes of general conversation and also mutual encouragement and support.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Monday March 19th #writemotivation Goal Status

The past week has probably been my least productive writing-wise since I dove back into writing last August. I'm okay with this, because it's been with good reason and my life has been productive in non-writing ways and I've continued to move forward a little bit at a time on my writing. Being honest with myself, there are going to be some more low-writing-productivity weeks ahead of me.

With it being Monday, it's time for my weekly #writemotivation goals status check-in.

1) Read my first draft of "Adrift" and create something akin to a "beat sheet" for it. - As with last week, this is still not started. I do still want to get back to this project, but for the moment, there simply are other projects that I am more motivated to tackle. Right this moment, I'm thinking that I might decide that I won't write a different first draft novel in November for NaNoWriMo if I don't devote at least some serious time to the first draft of Adrift, instead using November to tackle a second draft of Adrift. I don't want to build up a stockpile of first draft novels, after all. We'll see...
2) Have a short story revising day where I get at least three stories into a form where I am ready to send them out for beta or submission. - I scheduled this for late next week. If nothing goes awry between now and then, I should have 7-8 hours where I can work on this. If circumstances force me to defer this, then I'll try to do this in April.
3) Write 7,500 words of new fiction including at least one new short story. - I finished the longer short I had been working on. 7,500 words of new fiction seems a bit unlikely at this point, especially since I'm planning on a revising-intensive day (See #2). I can't rule it out, though. If I could get a couple of good 2-3 hour chunks of time with a solid idea I was ready to write, then I could still potentially make this goal.
4) Keep all my writing routines -- Seinfeld Chain, revised blogging schedule, etc. - On target. As I said last week, this is still my top goal for the month. I feel that if I come through the current "storms" with my routines intact, it will be a big momentum boost when I have more time available again. That said, I'm trying not to take this to the level of superstition or what-have-you. If I break the chain, or miss a blog post, then I just have to get back to it the next day.
5) On 3/31, have one non-time-sensitive blog post written and ready for future use on a day when I'm not able to post something "new." - I still need to finish/polish one of the two most-of-a-first-drafts that I wrote last week. There's really no reason (barring a new crisis) that I shouldn't get this done.
6) Write and submit one or more short stories for the first time. - I still need to mail out my story for the Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine monthly contest. It's printed now, though!
7) Decide if I am going to attend Marcon (a local science-fiction convention) in April or not. - This goal has been "met" in that I've decided I won't try to fit this into our schedule. I'll still look into conventions later this year towards my overall goal of attending at least one convention in 2012.
8) Complete a first draft of my non-fiction project. - The main portion of the work is done. I want to work on some secondary portions ("Bonus Features" if you will...) of it before I'd call it complete. This is another goal which I should reasonably be able to complete.

I really do appreciate having the structure around my goals which the #writemotivation folks help provide each other. It would be so easy to tell myself that I didn't have time for writing in my life right now, but that would be an excuse. I haven't had any large successes yet, but I've had small successes and have received lots of input that leads me to believe that the large successes are possible with perseverance and effort. I fully intend to keep on pushing through towards those large successes.

Thanks for stopping by! I hope that your own March writing is going well.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Sunday Links & The Week in #storyeachnight: March 18, 2012 Edition

I'm still intending to get back to Dissecting the Short Story, though with the continued health issues in both my and my wife's family, I'm not going to rush to meet the original timelines from my recent post about the future of the feature). I'll still follow the approach I outlined, but I'll post new dates once I'm more ready.

The most interesting writing news for me this week was getting a letter from Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine indicating that my submission for one of their monthly "Mysterious Photograph" contests was an Honorable Mention. This makes me 3-for-3 on Honorable Mentions, which is neat. I'm hoping that I break through with a winning story sometime soon. I feel rather good about the story I wrote for this month's contest.

This week, with my wife out of town all week, even nightly story reading for #storyeachnight was hit-and-miss, though I did manage to meet my daily obligation to myself around my writing. I was especially pleased to finish the first draft of a longer short story last night. (This is the one I'd mentioned in each of my last two weekly roundups. The first draft is done. Yay!)

Here are the stories I read for #storyeachnight this week:

3/11 - None
3/12 - "The Take" by Alex Shvartsman from DAILY SCIENCE FICTION. An interesting story about memory recording tech and the impact it had on one person's life.
3/13 - None
3/14 - None
3/15 -Ed McBain's "Downpour" from LEARNING TO KILL. An okay crime story but a bit long for what it was. On the whole, these early McBain stories have been decent but nothing outstanding.
3/16 - None
3/17 - The title story from W. P. Kinsella's collection BORN INDIAN. Kinsella's an old favorite of mine. This particular story has an interesting character dynamic but the dialect style of the writing felt a bit cumbersome.

And now, here are this week's links:

Thursday, March 15, 2012

How Does Writing Feel?

"Writing is easy. You just open a vein and bleed."
--Original Speaker Unknown, possibly sports columnist Red Smith

The above sentiment, even though it's not clear who first said it, is often referenced by writers about their work. While it may often be meant at least partially tongue-in-cheek, there must be at least some sense of connection with the figurative meaning of the words (one would hope not with the literal meaning...) for it to have been repeated so many times through the decades.

Honestly, though, this isn't a sentiment that really rings true to me. Lots of times, especially when I'm doing a first draft or when I'm getting to the point where I think a story reads the way I want it to read, I find it to be an exciting, enjoyable process. Some days, it's even sort of an escape from less pleasant parts of my life. Now, that's not to say that there aren't some days when I find it hard to get words down on the page, but that's almost always due to distractions or something else which diverts my focus away from my work. And, yes, there are some aspects of revising, especially for longer works, that I find tedious and difficult to get my hands around still. But even then there's that light at the end of the tunnel, that satisfaction when I make changes that feel right to me.

Some people say that they write because they have to write; that the stories inside them need to come out. That's definitely not the case for me. I could stop writing easily -- maybe too easily if past history is any guide -- and only feel occasional regret or disappointment that I hadn't kept up with it. But I don't want to do that, I want to press on and reach some of the larger writing goals I have for my life. And, to be fair, if I didn't make a concerted effort at some of those goals, then I probably would feel more serious regrets. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow...

The last couple of weeks, when I've had the energy, writing has been an escape. When I haven't had the energy, I've still made a point of putting in some time on it every day, to keep up momentum. Because, as I wrote in one of my first blog posts, writing begets writing and not writing begets not writing. And I know that I want to keep writing, because lots of days it feels pretty darn good.

How does writing feel for you? What are your favorite parts and your least favorite parts?

Monday, March 12, 2012

Monday #writemotivation Goals Status

One other side effect of some of the personal issues I mentioned in Sunday's post is that I may be keeping blog posts a bit on the short side for the moment. Today will be one of those days, as I'm going to just keep this to a quick rundown of goal status.

Also, there's a good chance that my goal progress will lag early this month. Depending on how things go with the issues we're working through now, it honestly may end up just not being that great of a month in general for my goals. If that's how things work out, then that's how they work out.

1) Read my first draft of "Adrift" and create something akin to a "beat sheet" for it. - Not started, though I have done a tiny bit of thinking about this and discussing it with other writers.
2) Have a short story revising day where I get at least three stories into a form where I am ready to send them out for beta or submission. - Not yet scheduled, though I'd really like to do this still. If I don't have to take time off of work for other reasons, I'll try to do this late in March.
3) Write 7,500 words of new fiction including at least one new short story. - I was ahead of pace, but I've fallen behind pace. However, I've completed two new short stories (both flash-length) and am very close to finishing a longer short.
4) Keep all my writing routines -- Seinfeld Chain, revised blogging schedule, etc. - On target. This is officially my #1 goal (priority-wise) for the month now. My wife and I talked about this some one night recently, one of the days when I'd been driving all over Ohio... I mentioned I thought I might just take the night off and she reminded me that I always feel better after I've spent time working on writing, even if it's on something relatively low-intensity. She encouraged me to go ahead and put the time in and I'm glad that she did and glad that I did.
5) On 3/31, have one non-time-sensitive blog post written and ready for future use on a day when I'm not able to post something "new." - Well, I had one. And then I used it Thursday when things got crazier. The good news is that the "low-intensity" writing I did a couple of nights recently was working on first drafts of blog posts. I didn't actually finish either one, but I have good starts on two such non-time-sensitive posts. But I do need to finish one (and not use it before 3/31) to meet this goal.
6) Write and submit one or more short stories for the first time. - This will be done as soon as I mail out my story for the Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine monthly contest.
7) Decide if I am going to attend Marcon (a local science-fiction convention) in April or not. - I suspect the answer here is going to be a no. Which is OK. There are plenty of other conventions I can attend within close driving distance later this year.
8) Complete a first draft of my non-fiction project. - Not much progress on this in the last week. I may try to work on this more in the upcoming week.

Thanks to all the #writemotivation folks who stop by. I hope that you're all having lots of success so far with your March goals and that the rest of the month treats all of us well.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Sunday Links & The Week in #storyeachnight: March 11, 2012 Edition

First off, a quick update relating to Dissecting the Short Story. As some of you may know from comments I've made on Twitter or other places, things have been incredibly crazy in my life recently. In the span of two weeks my father was injured in an accident which has drastically (and, thankfully, presumably temporarily) restricted his ability to get around and my mother-in-law had a stroke. Between taking on extra tasks to help family members and a lot of driving (750 miles in one 36 hour period) I've been both short on time and energy to do anything writing related. My writing time has been spent almost totally on things that either have a deadline or where I have time-based commitments (such as my Seinfeld/Daily Writing Chain and blog schedule).

How this relates to Dissecting the Short Story is that some of the benchmarks in my original timeline (as discussed in Monday's post about the future of the feature) are likely to slip a bit, though hopefully not by too awfully much.

So, with that out of the way, let's move on to the usual Sunday business of my #storyeachnight recap for the week and links to blog posts, etc. which I read in the last week and found worth sharing. First, the week's nightly short stories:

3/4 - "The Stars Are Falling" by Joe Lansdale from THE YEAR'S BEST DARK FANTASY AND HORROR 2011. A man returns to his wife, son, & East Texas home after experiencing the horrors of World War I but everything is different.
3/5 - "Accident Report" by Ed McBain from LEARNING TO KILL. Seemed very much a predecessor to the 87th Precinct stories
3/6 - "Something Real" by Rick Wilber from the 4-5/12 ASIMOV'S. A story of alternate timelines, WWII and Moe Berg.
3/7 - "Hurt Me" by M.L.N. Hanover from YEAR'S BEST DARK FANTASY & HORROR 2011. An interesting ghost story, nicely atmospheric, with a resolution I didn't expect.
3/8 - "Chinese Puzzle" by Ed McBain from LEARNING TO KILL. Another pre-87th Precinct procedural, this one 1st person.
3/9 - Ironically when I couldn't sleep I read "Insomnia" by A. G. Carpenter from DAILY SCIENCE FICTION. I mostly liked "Insomnia" (the story) though the ending left me a bit underwhelmed. Good voice & main character.
3/10 - "Electrica" by Sean McMullen in the Mar/Apr 2012 F&SF. Wow! If you have this mag, make time to read it! "Electrica" had some steampunk elements & setting (though not tone) put me in mind of the Flashman novels. I thoroughly enjoyed "Electrica." Didn't want to put it down. McMullen apparently is working on a novel in this universe. (* My favorite this week, though many weeks "The Stars Are Falling" or "Hurt Me" could have been my favorite. An especially good batch of stories this week.)

And now, here are this week's links:

Thursday, March 8, 2012

When Persistence Turns to Stubbornness

Responding to some questions from a fellow blogger a while back, I was asked what my greatest strength and weakness are. I replied, respectively, "Persistence" and "Stubbornness." Those are two words with somewhat similar denotations (Both are listed as synonyms of "Determination" in one online thesaurus.) but vastly different connotations.

When I gave that answer, I wasn't being at all sarcastic. I believe that my persistence is an asset in many ways -- I've been specifically lauded for that on the job, and I know that without persistence it would be hard to make any headway as a writer. Being persistent involves having confidence in what you believe and the willingness to act in a way consistent with that confidence particularly when obstacles are in your way. Specific to writing, your belief might be something specific such as "My novel represents a story that people will enjoy reading" or as general as "I will be a published writer someday." Persistence is what keeps you going when your novel has already been rejected a dozen times or when you've spent hundreds of hours on writing without a single word sold yet. Persistence would rarely be considered a character flaw.

Stubbornness, on the other hand, would. What is the difference between persistence and stubbornness? Here are two possible answers:
  1. Persistence relies on at least some evidence; stubbornness relies on defying evidence. If people who can give you a fair critique of your novel have read it and found it to have merit, then pressing on with it would be an example of persistence. On the other hand, if everyone except for those who would feel compelled to say nice things about your novel has expressed real reservations about it, then pressing on -- without stepping back to consider ways that it could be improved -- probably is more stubbornness.
  2. Stubbornness is more likely to involve hurting people (yourself or others) than persistence. It's hard for me to say that persistence never involves people being hurt in one way or another. There are certainly some situations where a laudatory goal involves some level of sacrifice. That said, if you're neglecting your own health or happiness or that of family members due to the degree of tenacity you are applying to any activity then it's worth, at the very least, sitting down and being honest with yourself and others about the choices you're making.
Summarizing those two, I'd describe stubbornness as being "persistence which is destructive or based on refusal to consider that you might be wrong." I'm sure there are other possible descriptions. But I know that I cross that line from persistent to stubborn at times; it's something I often struggle with. Considering such topics as the nature of things which I can control has been helpful in learning to harness the benefits of my persistence without paying the price for stubbornness. I'm better at making those judgments now than I was ten years ago and I hope and expect that ten years from now I'll be better still.

What about you? Would you define persistence and stubbornness differently? Are there other virtues which you sometimes take beyond the point of them being virtuous to the point of them being negative?

Monday, March 5, 2012

Dissecting the Short Story Returns & #writemotivation Goals Status

Last month I ran a pair of surveys to see which genre magazines and major pro-rate on-line venues were read frequently by people visiting my blog. The results are further down the page. A total of 12 votes for print magazines came in from 17 voters, or approximately 2/3rds of a print venue per voter. A total of 22 votes for online magazines came in from 15 voters, or approximately 1 1/2 online venues per voter. (There were two more options in the online poll, which presumably accounts for a bit of that skew.)

The point of these surveys was to see what publications might be best for a revival of the Dissecting the Short Story series. I've determined that doing story dissections for mystery fiction just isn't in the "sweet spot" of my readership and that looking to utilize online publications, particularly ones where a story is available to be read on-line for free or a very small cost, is probably the best approach.

Here's my plan:
  • Within the next week or so I'll identify three stories which meet the criteria I described above (In an online publication, available to read free/cheaply, from a pro-rate market) and create a poll on my blog so people can vote on the three choices. The three stories will also all be ones which have been published very recently.
  • Voting will be open through the end of the month.
  • In early April, I'll publish the dissection of the selected story and also set up a new list of three choices.
  • I plan to try this for two or three months and see if it increases the level of discussion around the stories. From there, I'll determine whether I'll continue the series or put it back on hiatus.

Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine
  1 (5%)
  2 (11%)
Asimov's Science Fiction
  4 (23%)
Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine
  1 (5%)
Fantasy & Science Fiction
  3 (17%)
  1 (5%)
None of the Above
  11 (64%)
Total Voters: 17

Apex Magazine
  2 (13%)
  5 (33%)
Daily Science Fiction
  5 (33%)
Flash Fiction Online
  1 (6%)
Lightspeed/Fantasy Magazine
  4 (26%)
InterGalactic Medicine Show
  1 (6%)
Redstone Science Fiction
  1 (6%)
Strange Horizons
  3 (20%)
None of the Above
  7 (46%)
Total Voters: 15

The other order of business today is my weekly #writemotivation update. Just like in January, those of us in the #writemotivation activity are posting statuses for our March goals every Monday. Here's my current status (past the jump)

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Sunday Links & The Week in #storyeachnight: March 4, 2012 Edition

It's Sunday again! Time for me to go back and look over the short stories I read as part of my #storyeachnight reading and also highlight some writing-related links that I found particularly useful from this past week. First, here are this week's stories along with my comments on them from my #storyeachnight tweets.

2/26 - "Last Cottage" by Christopher Merkner from BEST AMERICAN MYSTERY STORIES 2011. An interesting first person plural story of greed in a small town. (* My favorite of the week.)
2/27 - "Bus Ride to Mars" by Cat Rambo from DAILY SCIENCE FICTION. I enjoyed reading it, lots of great details. If there was much plot, I missed it. That said, it's a credit to the story that I was unsure of the "point" and still liked the story.
2/28 - "The Procedure" by L. E. Elder from DAILY SCIENCE FICTION. A singularity-ish story with one of last non-AllTechs facing her future. Maybe I've just read too many similar stories, but that one really didn't grab me.
2/29 - "Frumpy Little Beat Girl" by Peter Atkins from YEAR'S BEST DARK FANTASY AND HORROR 2011. A Robert Rankin/Douglas Adams-esque fantasy about a used bookseller co-opted into trying to save the world. Fun. I've really enjoyed this anthology, almost every story I've read from it so far has been excellent.
3/1 - "Top of the World" by Bill Crider from FAVORITE KILLS.
3/2 -  "Jack Webb's Star" by Lee Goldberg from FAVORITE KILLS. From a traffic ticket to theft and murder...
3/3 - "More Than a Scam" by Dave Zeltserman from 21 TALES. Most everyone gets more than they bargained for in it.

And now, here are this week's writing-related links that I found interesting and worth sharing...

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Final February Goal Status

This is going to be brief. Life's been hectic today. The post on restarting the Dissecting the Short Story series will have to wait a few more days as I've only had a few minutes tonight to get today's post together.

OK, so how did I do in February with my goals?

1) Spend time in the first half of the month analyzing my first draft of "Adrift" and time in the second half of the month planning the second draft. - A bit of progress, nowhere near what I planned. But I think I have a better idea how to approach this now. At least, I hope that I do!

2) Write 5,000 words of new fiction including at least one new short story. - I made it, though it required getting a fair number of new words written on the 29th. Good thing it's Leap Year!

3) Keep all my writing routines -- Seinfeld Chain, revised blogging schedule, etc. -No issues with this.

4) On 2/29, have one non-time-sensitive blog post written and ready for future use on a day when I'm not able to post something "new." - I replaced the one I used, so I met this goal.

5) Submit one or more short stories for the first time this month. - I submitted two stories for the first time in February, one of which sold.

6) Look more seriously at scheduling to attend Marcon in early April. - This is a local science fiction convention. I went to look at programming notes a few days back and it was still rather vague. I'll make a decision in March whether I want to try to fit this one into my schedule or wait for a convention later in the year.

On the whole, especially considering everything else which has gone on around me in February, I don't feel bad about this, but I am hoping that I can build off of it and have an even better writing March.

"A Minor God of Mischief" is Live on Kazka Press

A quick blurb to let everyone know that my most recently accepted story, "A Minor God of Mischief" is now live on the Kazka Press website. I hope that you enjoy reading it!

I'll be putting up a regular Thursday post later today, but wanted to get this news out as soon as I could do so.