October 2012 Recap

October 28, 2012

 

Earlier this month I got to attend the Viable Paradise writing workshop on Martha’s Vineyard. It was an amazing experience, and I will write a much more detailed post about it soon — but it was so formulative and overwhelming that I couldn’t bring myself to blog intelligently about it right away.  It is on my (very long) to do list for November.

Although I’ve only written one new story this month, I’ve had a number of very exciting sales and publications in October.

Publications:

“The tell-tale ear” was published by The Journal of Nature. This is a 21st-century retelling of “The tell-tale heart” told entirely through e-mails. I wrote the story for a Shock Totem contest and was thrilled to have it sell to Nature mere days after I submitted it there, by far my fastest pro-level acceptance.  You can read this story here.

Smoke & Mirrors, an outstanding podcast by Dennis R. Miller, produced my 100-word humorous fantasy story Chill, which originally appeared in The Drabbler a year ago.  Dennis was also kind enough to plug Unidentified Funny Objects. Listen to this week’s episode here.

Combined with my Bards & Sages story mentioned in the previous post this has been quite a month for my humor stories. And, to top it off, yet another humor story will appear on ufopub.com — but I will make a separate post about it when it goes live.

Sales:

Stupefying Stories will publish “Number Station” in their November issue, edited by M. David Blake. The story was accepted by Stupefying Stories back in January and has been waiting for the right issue ever since. So technically this isn’t a new sale, but I’m pleased to share this story with the world.

Weird Tales accepted “A Gnomish Gift” for their Fairy Tales themed issue, which is likely to appear around December.

Daily Science Fiction accepted “Things We Leave Behind” — this is my fourth sale to my favorite SF ‘zine, and the first longer Friday story (at 2500 words).

So what’s on tap for November? It’s novel time! Beginning November 1st I will tackle a novel. I’ve been busy outlining and planning and generally thinking about the themes and motifs I would like to feature in the book. Although I expected my first novel to be a Conrad Brent story, I decided to start with something else instead. This will be a space opera tentatively titled “World Burner” and based on the short story “The Dragon Ships of Tycho” which I wrote last year and which was published in the Galactic Creatures anthology in Spring of 2012. I wrote the sequel story to “Dragon Ships” titled “The Sgovari Stratagem” while at Viable Paradise and the world and characters just can’t get out of my head. So I’m going to expand on these two stories and try to produce the first draft of a novel in a few months’ time.

I don’t want to abandon short stories though. I still intend to write at least one new short story per month to meet my Write1Sub1 goals. Speaking of Write1Sub1, the fine folks behind this motivational program are gearing up for its third year and they recruited several new moderators to help usher it along. I’m one of those new moderators. Which means I will be in charge of posting the weekly content on the Write1Sub1 web site for at least one month next summer, among other things. Because, you know, there wasn’t enough on my plate already. But I love the W1S1 initiative and how it helps lazy writers like myself to produce more words and helps the more timid writers among us to kick their stories out the door and into submission queues, so when they asked, it was an easy “yes” for me.

I’m looking forward to November. I will attend Phil Con and send ARCs (Advance Review Copies) of Unidentified Funny Objects to reviewers. And, with any luck, have more exciting story sales to report.

 

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September Recap

October 5, 2012

I keep telling myself (and all of you) about how I will be updating this blog more regularly. So far it has been a big fat lie. But then, what do you expect from someone who writes down lies for fun?
Seriously, it has been a crazy couple of months. Putting together an anthology is an infinite amount of work. It cut deep into my writing time, let alone blog time, reading time, and any other -time that doesn’t involve work or family. So here’s a brief recap of what’s been going on in my writerly life in September and early October:
* I’m pleased to announce that Unidentified Funny Objects has been copy-edited and is off to the interior designer. We should have galleys within a few days and an ARC to send out to authors and reviewers in a week or so.

* Monthly humor stories on ufopub.com have been  launched. First up was “The Ogre King and the Piemaker” by Tarl Kudrick. Do yourself a favor and check it out, it’s as funny as anything in the book!

* My flash fiction story “Manna From Heaven” opens the October issue of Bards and Sages Quarterly.  “Manna from Heaven” opens the issue, which is very neat.  You can pick up a copy on Amazon.

 

 

* I sold “The Miracle on Tau Prime” to Daily Science Fiction. It’s a story of the Vatican miracle investigators… in space! There’s no publication date, but I would expect it to appear either really late in 2012 or in early 2013.

* The FISH anthology from Dagan Books which includes my story “Life on the Lake’s Shore” among work from many other fine authors will be coming out this month.

* My story “The Tell-Tale Ear” will be coming out in the October 18 issue of Nature and will be available to read for free online.

* I’ve been invited to submit a story to the “Beyond the Sun” anthology. If accepted, it’d share the table of contents with such juggernauts as Silverberg, Resnick and Kress! Of course, this project needs to be funded first, and it could use all the help it can get. They’re currently on Kickstarter, so do me (and yourself) a favor and pre-order a copy over here.

* I will be attending PhilCon as a guest this year, participating on panels and possibly doing a reading. This convention will take place in Cherry Hill, NJ (15 minute drive from downtown Philadelphia) on the weekend of November 9 through 11. There will be lots of awesome people I know there, and I encourage anyone who can make the trip to attend.

 

 

* Saving the best for last: Tomorrow I’m heading to Viable Paradise. This highly prestigious writing workshop takes place annually on Martha’s Vineyard. It is now in its 16th year. 24 newer writers like myself will learn from instructors Elizabeth Bear, Debra Doyle, Steven Gould, James D. Macdonald, Patrick and Theresa Nielsen-Hayden, Steven Brust and Sherwood Smith. I’m super excited about this workshop and hope it will help me take my writing to the next level (preferably bypassing the tough boss monster at the end of the current level).

I apologize to my non-video game playing readers for that reference. (OK, I’m not really sorry. Deal with it.)

And when I get back, I will be updating the blog more regularly. At least that’s what I keep telling myself.

 

 


VP and Guest Blog Post

June 20, 2012

I’ve been concentrating on the anthology, but there are lots of other great writing-related news to report as well.

 

 

Early this week I learned that my application was accepted and I’ll be attending Viable Paradise 16 – a very prestigious speculative fiction workshop that takes place on Martha’s Vineyard each October. I applied and didn’t make it in last year, but was encouraged to try again. I did, and it worked out. VP is an opportunity to learn from some of the top writers and editors in the industry. This year’s instructors include TOR editors Patrick and Theresa Nielsen Hayden, Elizabeth Bear, Steven Brust and James McDonald among others. I’m thrilled to be attending and hope it will help advance my writing to the next level.

Speaking of workshops, much of that is about having other writers read and comment on your manuscript, which segues me nicely to the next bit of news.

 

 

 

A guest blog post I wrote for Penumbra Magazine was published today. It’s called Get The Most Out of Beta Reader Feedback. As you may have guessed from the title, it’s about cabbage farming. Seriously though, if critiquing interests you, you should also go read Jake Kerr’s excellent Eleven Rules On How To Get Great Critiques.

The cover above is from Penumbra’s Politics themed issue, which includes my story “Price of Allegiance” and is coming out in early July.

Finally, I’d like to bring your attention to an excellent blog post by Jeff Chapman who selected my flash story The Traveling Fair (published by Every Day Fiction) as his story of the week and dissected it with some thoughtful comments and interesting things to say. Thank you, Jeff!