It’s been a surprisingly productive week. Not sure if I’ll be able to say that about next week, but then I’ll be back at it on the 27th. Either way, I’m proud of what I accomplished this time around.
At last, I’ve begun my final reading of my debut novel. It hasn’t been without its hitches, as I ended up making some tweaks to the opening chapter. That was to be expected, I suppose; I hadn’t really done much with it since I first laid it down years ago. Now, the reading should be able to proceed unhindered, and I’m looking forward to wrapping things up this weekend (I would imagine that, if nothing else, I can be counted on to read something I’ve already written over Christmas). With that done, I’ll have a week to craft a query letter and jot out a synopsis. Hopefully, I’ll still make my deadline of seeking publication before the end of the year.
Speaking of seeking publication, my revisions of several manuscripts have led to a fresh round of submissions.
Ironically, though I often tell myself I’m going to submit a round of manuscripts for submission, more often than not said submissions occur haphazardly: it’s a spur of the moment thing. Often it starts with me reading or revising an existing manuscript, thinking “Hey, this is actually pretty good”, then tossing it out for someone.
This time around, I’ve submitted Presence, Going Dark (recently revised), and Odyssey for publication. Only Odyssey came as something of a surprise. For some time now, I’d considered it one of my weaker manuscripts, but after the warm reception Free Fall received here on my website, I began to think this might be marketable after all.
Presence, on the other hand, I’ve long considered one of my strongest manuscripts. This, of course, makes its repeated rejection somewhat disheartening. At this point, I’m running out of potential landing spots for the story, and if it’s rejected this time around, more than likely it will end up here, on my site. So, perhaps the literary world’s loss will be my readers’ gain.
While I’ve never considered Going Dark my finest work, I seem to be in the minority in that regard; several editors have praised it, though they found it to be a poor fit for their publications. Taking feedback I’ve received to heart, I’ve reworked the story slightly, and now I’m aiming high, having submitted it to Clarkesworld. Of course, Clarkesworld is essentially the New Yorker of the science fiction community, so I’m not getting my hopes up. But we shall see. Took them nearly a month to say no to my last submission.
Of course, my most visible accomplishment this past week was Free Fall. Last week I committed myself to posting short fiction on my website again; from there, it was just a matter of deciding what, exactly, to post. Free Fall was originally a story I’d intended to shop around for publication, but as it was one of three I considered posting, and the other two were an unfinished story and a recently completed work in dire need of revision, Free Fall won out. I’m very happy with the responses I’ve gotten. Hopefully, this will help to raise my profile as I begin seeking publication for Wide Horizon.
That wraps it up for this week. Tomorrow, I’ll be departing for Florida to spend Christmas with family, but the work of an aspiring writer is never done. Rest assured, I’ll have more to report next week.