Sunday, February 6, 2011

Early February Writing Update

Hmm. I realized that I stated in my first post that this blog was going to be primarily about my writing. One month in…nothing. So, time for an update I suppose.

Current submission log = four stories. Three spec fiction stories and one literary story out right now. I’m feeling cautiously confident. One story, “Deerslayer” (not, incidentally, by James Fenimore Cooper, yuk), has been out to a major magazine for about sixty days. I received an email about twenty days in that my story had been shortlisted and sent forward to the primary fiction editor, who happens to be a well-known and fabulous writer. So, fingers still crossed on that one.

I like to think with each day that passes “Deerslayer” has survived another round of cullings. Probably not true, but I amuse myself in this way. It may be that upon receiving the manuscript the aforementioned editor immediately burned and spread its ashes on the four winds while cackling maniacally. It’s a distinct possibility (and a great image). But one I try not to dwell on.

My output for January? Meh. Two new short stories, the second of which bled into the first couple days of February. They are two stories I’m very happy with, however. They surprised me. Almost wrote themselves, once I started the snowball rolling. I love it when that happens, especially when things don’t go the way I plan them. I love to be surprised.

The first of them is making the rounds of the magazines. The second is “in utero” so to speak, receiving some first-reader feedback and undergoing preliminary edits. I’ve already made some major upgrades. Hopefully it will be ready for submission later this week.

The novel? Slow. I finished a few chapters during January. But it’s been hard-going, primarily because I want to have a better idea where things are going before I move too far ahead. When a short story takes you to unexpected places, its easy to adapt. When a novel does…major reconfiguration. There are many threads that have to knot together into a coherent whole. But I’m getting there. Just don’t wait up for me.

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