I was going to wait to make posts here until I had News or something Cool about my writing career to share — but like a lot of things, publishing is about a lot of Waiting so I had nothing new all year.
Which is kind of a sad state for an update-section of one’s website to be in, you know?
But since it’s my birthday and the end of the year, I figured I should do something! I also just read an article from Cat Rambo about what to write about when you have nothing to write about (for blogs) — and one of the suggestions is to share a snippet of what you’ve been working on.
Since sharing snippets on Fridays is one of my favorite things about one of the discord writing communities I’m in, I think I’ll give that a go here too. So you have that to look forward to in the next year.
In the meantime, I thought it might be fun to share my statistics for the year:
For 2022 in short fiction:
- 13 Submissions –
- 0 Acceptances
- 8 Form Rejections
- 2 Personal Rejections
- 3 Still Awaiting Responses
But I also:
> Went to my first WorldCon (Chicago!) in September and had a great time and met so many fantastic kind people! Really enjoyed getting to hang out in person for the first time with so many Lady Astronaut Club members ❤
> Went to GenCon in August and discovered there’s a writing track?! and got to meet very cool people, snagged a last minute spot at a Read & Critique that was super validating
> Attended Futurescapes in March (hello cohort! Y’all are awesome!)(gosh was that only this year though? feels like forever ago)
One of the great things about WorldCon – aside from the wonderful panels and lovely people – was how much it reinvigorated my enthusiasm for writing on the novel. After two Futurescapes revamping the first chapter(s) for the umpteenth time, and then not making it into either of the other juried workshops I’d applied for (Clarion West and Viable Paradise), I was kinda stuck and bummed out about working on it despite learning a ton.
But the energy of being around other writers at GenCon and WorldCon was the best kind of infectious. I sat down after WorldCon and worked out a better structure for the novel, then started thumbnailing scenes and sections. It helped a lot — when I went back to prose-writing I doubled my word count in a month. Which is a lot, for me! And I’m keeping up the momentum, which is nice.
I wrote a couple new short stories this year, one for a flash fiction contest, the others just because. I’m always torn on writing shorts when I could be working on the novel, and vice versa — guess I just don’t know which path I ought to be focusing on.
I also worry about my writing style with short fiction. Many of the (absolutely beautiful) stories that I read in places like Uncanny or Strange Horizons or Deadlands or Beneath Ceaseless Skies and many many others — all markets I’d love to be published by one day — tend to be very… not sure how to say it. Message-heavy? Clearly hitting on something deep and emotional and relevant to the world today.
And I feel like my work tends towards “fun adventure” without that deep easily-felt modernly-relevant core. I suppose I just don’t think of things like the author of those stories I love do? My experiences throughout my life have been relatively sheltered, all things considered. Add in the ADHD disconnected-from-emotions and yeah. Fun adventure stories is me.
And I don’t think there’s anything wrong with either approach, to be fair! Clearly, I love those stories! It just means I think my chances of ever getting into those markets with those editors is very small, because of it, since I don’t know how to write those stories. I wonder if I should just stick to novels, where I feel like it’s easier to just be “fun adventure stories”.
That’s what I’ve been musing over lately, anyways.
I did a pretty terrible job of keeping track of the short and long fiction I read this year, too, so guess what’s getting a dedicated page in my bullet journal to hopefully help with that in 2023.
I want to end on a positive note, so let’s celebrate what progress we have made!