May Word Count

Friday, June 2nd, 2017 03:15 pm
lizvogel: Good / Bad (Good Bad)
May was a wash as far as word productivity was concerned. The load of stuff needing to be done around the house was just too heavy, and I pretty much wrote off writing in favor of getting some other things done. (Which mostly still aren't done, but that's another post.)

So, words for May:

Falling From Ground = 114

And that's it. That's net; there was some negative-word-count editing in there, but not enough to make the gross any less embarrassing.

I was not a complete slug all month, however:

stories submitted = 6

Which meant that more than half the available works were out there making their case. So the business side made a decent showing, even if the production side didn't.

June may be another fustercluck, what with a con that may be fraught, and a home improvement project that I'm thoroughly fed up with. On the other hand, I've already started applying the alpha-reader's feedback to the mega-chapter conglomeration, and I think I know where to break it up into reasonable chapter-sized chunks. I really do need to figure out what's going on behind the scenes in FFG, though.

So, goals:

- Let's say 3000 words. Some of which had better be on getting FFG moving, though don't forget that Green Ring and short stories exist.

- Keep subbing stories.

- Get HoM querying happening again. I've already started this, with finalizing the new query, setting up the new email address, etc. Now to put them to use.

February Word Count

Tuesday, March 1st, 2016 01:18 pm
lizvogel: What is this work of which you speak? (Cat on briefcase.) (Work)
original short fiction: 257
Highway of Mirrors revisions: 1571

Total new words in February: 1828

Better than I expected, and not bad for a month in which word-count really wasn't the point.

I've added a little over 4k words to Highway of Mirrors in this revision pass, mostly in the form of little characterization snippets.

Short story submissions: 6, and queried on one outstanding

At one point, I had everything fit to go out in some slush pile somewhere. They've started trickling back already, of course, but goal still achieved and it was nice while it lasted.

For March: Start writing new stuff again, consistently. Also, read-through of HoM with housemate and revisions as necessary.
lizvogel: Good / Bad (Good Bad)
...there's a list of Campbell-eligible authors at

If you're an SF writer and your first professional sale was published in 2014 or 2015, go there to see if you're eligible. You probably are. (I'm not. Turns out the prior year's contest win netted enough to count for their purposes, so I'm past my shelf date. Ah, well.)

Also, there's an anthology of Campbell-eligible authors being put together here. It's exposure-only, but might be good for some name recognition.

(Note: I am in no way hallucinating that I'd need to start working on an acceptance speech, even if I were still eligible. This is more in the nature of a PSA to any fellow writers who were equally oblivious to this stuff's existence.)
lizvogel: What is this work of which you speak? (Cat on briefcase.) (Work)
Every short story I have that's fit to go out is currently in a slush pile somewhere.

Goal achieved!
lizvogel: Good / Bad (Good Bad)
Writer's Digest is having another of its “Dear Lucky Agent” contests, this one for adult mystery/thriller/suspense novels. Deadline is September 17. Details here:

Disclaimer: Entry requires two mentions of the contest on social media. This is one of mine.

lizvogel: Good / Bad (Good Bad)
Didn't realize I'd skipped this last month, but then, June had other things going on. So, another double header!


Green Ring = 201

Short stories submitted = 2


original short fiction = 435
Falling From Ground = 2522
Total new words in July = 2957

Short stories submitted = 3

A decent show at getting back on the horse, I think. Also, FFG has now topped the 10K line again, which is nice. Hopefully it's with words that'll stay this time.

For August, I don't want to get too hard-core yet for fear that upping the pressure will shut down the flow, but a soft target of 3000 words should be feasible. And I really should get back to querying.

Oh, come on!

Monday, February 9th, 2015 01:49 pm
lizvogel: What is this work of which you speak? (Cat on briefcase.) (Work)
Having a terribly efficient morning after cranking out another 1000+ words last night, and the next task up is to get one of the two currently "resting" stories submitted. So I turn on the computer...

...and there in my in-box is a rejection. Really? You can't even wait until I get one of the others sent off?

I swear, the universe has a "Reject Me Now" light that goes on every time I think seriously of my submissions spreadsheet. I know it's not supposed to be easy, but man, this is getting old.

ETA: And just for that, I sent two stories out. And now I'm going to go have a nice hot shower and then see if I can't write some more. So take that, universe.
lizvogel: What is this work of which you speak? (Cat on briefcase.) (Work)
What is it with submissions, that every time I send something out, it signals the universe to bounce something else back? Seriously, I sent out a story at the beginning of the year; two days later, something else got rejected. Yesterday, I sent out two stories, and whammo, this morning there's a rejection on something else in my inbox.

One of my goals is to keep every story that's submittable out in slush-land. But I swear, I'm getting tempted to hold something back, just so the universe will keep everything else in what I can pretend is active consideration.
lizvogel: What is this work of which you speak? (Cat on briefcase.) (Work)
...or so my New Year's Day fortune cookie told me. ;-)

To that end: I really like the bakery story. And I've been sitting on it for six months waiting for beta-reading that isn't going to happen. Enough of that. Out it goes.
lizvogel: What is this work of which you speak? (Cat on briefcase.) (Work)
Rejection yesterday. Back out today.


Thursday, August 28th, 2014 11:24 am
lizvogel: Good / Bad (Good Bad)
Had to happen sooner or later, I suppose. I am nobly resisting the urge to spend the day eating ice cream and snubbing my nose at the universe in a fit of uselessness. ;-) Instead, I shall find another place to send that story, and another story to send to that place.

Though there may also be ice cream. ;-)

Whither Windy's?

Sunday, August 17th, 2014 08:58 am
lizvogel: What is this work of which you speak? (Cat on briefcase.) (Work)
I made my spreadsheet of SF/f markets, and it's already proved its worth, since in the process I figured out the best market for the story I want to get back out there next, and the follow-up market if that one doesn't bite. Market S sounds like a good fit, pays pretty well, and has a respectable readership. Market T has a lot of competition for spots and a very long response time, but pays vastly above the going rate and has a huge readership.

And then I found Market U.

I love the sense of humor conveyed by their overall approach; it sounds like exactly the sensibilities that would suit my story. And they pay well enough. I was all set to fire it off that day, and did a quick "bewares" search just for form's sake. I didn't find any warnings... but I didn't find much else, either. Very few reviews, no general chatter at all outside of Market U's own site. Which makes me wonder, nifty as they are... is anybody reading them? People should be, because I read all of the current issue and there's nothing wrong with the story quality, but that doesn't automatically promise flocks of eager eyeballs. And that makes me hesitate.

Because that's the goal here. Money's nice, don't get me wrong; it's not like I'm going to turn it down. But first and foremost, this story wants to be read, and by as many amenable readers as it can reasonably reach. And I just don't know if Market U can provide that.

I've got time to dither: the submissions window for Market U's relevant issue is open for another month or so, and Market S doesn't re-open for another couple of weeks. But dithering without more data isn't likely to get me any farther, no matter how much time I put into it. ;-P

(Of course, this all assumes that any of them will buy the story. But one rather has to assume that, or what's the point of sending it out?)
lizvogel: What is this work of which you speak? (Cat on briefcase.) (Work)
I've started putting together a spreadsheet of short-story markets. That may sound like a procrastination tactic, and to some extent it is, but it's reached the point that keeping track of pay rates, length limits, and all the other factors that go into deciding who gets a shot at what story next is more than my poor brain can handle unassisted.

If I'm not back in a week, send search parties.
lizvogel: Good / Bad (Good Bad)
There's something fundamentally encouraging about stopping at the bank to deposit the check from one story on the way to the Post Office to mail another. No, I don't get to make that standard operating procedure -- but wouldn't it be great if you could!

I've gotten rejections on two stories in the last few days, which meant that the number of stories sitting around here was higher than the number of stories sitting in various slush piles. That ratio is not acceptable. ;-) So, those two got sent back out into the wild today.

Next up, I need to get some of the others dressed up in their best clothes, patted on the head, and shoved out the door. ;-) Onward!
lizvogel: What is this work of which you speak? (Cat on briefcase.) (Work)
Guys, my story is up! My story! With my name on it and everything! In a real professional publication!

This is so cool.

Publication Date!

Sunday, June 1st, 2014 01:28 am
lizvogel: What is this work of which you speak? (Cat on briefcase.) (Work)
OMG they haven't forgotten about me!

"Off The Map" will be published by Daily Science Fiction on June 2nd. That's this Monday, folks!

You can subscribe by going to and providing them with your email address, and they will send you a fine science fiction or fantasy story (including mine), direct to your inbox, every weekday, free of charge. Or, if you prefer, you can go to the website and read there at your convenience; I'm told "Off The Map" will go up there the same day it's sent out.

Do stop by and have a read. Now, if you will pardon me, I have to go hyperventilate some more.

Tax Time Blues

Wednesday, April 9th, 2014 04:16 pm
lizvogel: What is this work of which you speak? (Cat on briefcase.) (Work)
So, according to IRS Pub. 525, it seems that the prizes from the ISFiC Writers Contest go on the 1040 as "other income", and not as business income from writing. This is rather discouraging; I was looking forward to having actual income on my writing Schedule C, not just expenses!

Ah, well. Next year, eh?
lizvogel: What is this work of which you speak? (Cat on briefcase.) (Work)
...and it is "We would like to publish your story".

Yes, folks, I am delighted to announce that Daily Science Fiction has accepted "Off The Map" for publication!

My first sale. Like, for actual money. And getting to say I'm a published author (or will be, anyway, when it comes out). Wow.

(I have known about this for almost a month. But now the contract has arrived and been agreed to and sent back, so it's all official and stuff. And I get to Tell People!)

If there is a more beautiful way for an email to start than that, I don't know what it is. And I should know, given how many times I re-read it to make sure it really did say that.

Published author. Huh.

Submit! Submit!

Wednesday, February 12th, 2014 06:42 pm
lizvogel: What is this work of which you speak? (Cat on briefcase.) (Work)
Got a rejection on a short story a few days ago.

Sent another one off today.

That's right, mister big-shot editor. You didn't like my story? Then I'm going to send you something even more awesome! And I'm going to keep doing it until you buy something. So there! ;-)

On a related note, it was a delight to get a post-office employee who understood about SASEs. Usually they look at me like I'm insane when I ask for postage and the same amount again in stamps, but this one immediately grokked why.
lizvogel: What is this work of which you speak? (Cat on briefcase.) (Work)
Another query sent! Done last night, but it's a snail-mail-preferring agent, so it was off to the Post Awful this morning.

It really does take me an astonishingly long time to do one of these things. I like to read everything I can find about an agent, and an 80+ page Absolute Write thread does take some perusing, but even so, sheesh! That ate the whole evening.

(I did manage to write a bit afterward, despite the inevitable foul mood from the inevitable obstreperousness of technology whenever one is preparing something important. V. pleased with myself for that. Most of it wasn't on the chapter I'm supposed to be finishing, of course, but on the next chapter, but still: words. Words good.)

That's query-quota for the month. Now to buckle down and finish word-count quota.

Speaking of words, I sent off another short story on Monday. Almost forgot to mention that, in light of Something Else which I will hopefully be able to post about soon.




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