I haven’t written about writing for a couple of weeks. In fact, I haven’t written much at all. I’m in–I was in–the writing doldrums.
After cutting 12,000 words from my completed novel, I sat back and took stock. I really believe in my paranormal romance, but getting it out there is going to be harder and take longer than I thought it would.
My editor emailed that she loved the cuts and would get the proofed document to me soon. Meaning there’s more work to be done. Sigh.
So instead of going full steam ahead on my work-in-progress–also paranormal romance–I’ve been pecking away at it. A chapter here. A half-chapter there. A page. A half-page. Hmm…
I keep checking Duotrope to see which of my pending queries needed to be updated as REJECTED. I had one email rejection from an agent. I had one contract for a short story to appear next month.
But then, this morning, I had an acceptance for a short story I wrote in response to a submission call. That changed my attitude fast.
Except, here’s the thing. My short fiction is almost entirely horror. I’ve had relatively good success with horror. Maybe I should be writing horror and not romance.
Something to think about.
What do you think about changing genres mid-stream?
Every year since leaving corporate America, I’ve set two goals. One for gardening and the other for writing. In 2017, I followed Ray Bradbury’s suggestion, to write 52 short stories. Bradbury says that you can’t write 52 BAD stories. I set out to prove him wrong.
But no. He was right. I came away from 2017 with 33 short stories, most bad. But what to do with the good ones? I had no clue.
And then, I stumbled on Anna Yeatts by signing up for a Write Stories That Sell course. Halfway through the course, I had to deal with a pantry moth infestation and stopped doing anything unrelated to killing bugs.
Anna sent an auto-reminder to finish the course.
Irritably, I emailed back that I’d get back to it when–someday–I vanquished the pantry moths hanging off my ceiling. And Anna responded with: Pantry moths are the worst! Impressing me with the hands-on touch.
After spending untold sums on books, groups, and programs to learn writing craft, I signed on with Anna. Now–18 months later–I’ve had five short stories accepted for publication, with two already published.
Goal accomplished? Yes, but achievement breeds more goals. It’s fall, a time for taking stock, and as 2019 looms, I count on the two things I learned this year.
I wasn’t able to write 52 (or 33) bad stories. Thank you Ray Bradbury and Anna Yeatts.
It’s never too late.