Skip to content

Posts tagged ‘Publishing’

Back from Break – October 5, 2017

Phew! It’s been a while since I have updated this blog.

Honestly, I needed a break from all things social media related. After pushing through to get out of debt and figure out my game plan for the next phase of my life, I realized I needed to unplug from my life. Like a lot of people, I work in front of a computer all day long. The idea of spending more time in front of it just killed me. It’s one of the reasons I write long hand a lot. I would much rather spend time writing on a note pad than composing on the computer.

So I spend most of the spring and summer away from the screen, trying to come up with a writing plan for myself. I didn’t find a good one. All I can say is that I’m still working on my book. Slowly but surely, it will get done. I have this fantasy of it being completed by the end of the year, but we’ll see. I also have a few other stories that need to be finished or tweaked.

Good news! Even in my disorganized state, I am still submitting. I even managed to get another story accepted. It should go live by the end of the year. That news really energized me (which is why I want to have a completed draft done by the end of the year). I wrote the story four years ago and it has gone through a lot of rejections. I’m so happy it found a home.

Reminds me of the old advice that the one trait a writer needs is — Persistence.

I’m getting back into the swing of things, so expect more updates (or at least more that one every 6 months). Thanks to all of you who have stuck with the blog this long. Things are getting interesting!

I Self-Published a Book!



My new chapbook of short stories – Hypergraphia and Other Odd Stories – is available to purchase!

Exactly one month ago, I sat hunched over my computer staring at the Amazon Kindle store screen. Most Decembers, I have almost half the month off and this time around I decided to take advantage of all my time off. I had been tossing around the idea of self-publishing and figured why not?

I did this to see if I COULD do it. Could I format a book and upload it to Amazon? Could I design my own book cover? It was a challenge to figure out. One I enjoyed.

I had the stories. These five were written over the past three years. Some written and worked in class. Some I written on my own. All of them fun and interesting (to me at least).

Right now the e-book is only available on Amazon, but I am working on formatting it through Smashwords for other places (Kobo, iBooks, Nook, etc.)

I’m sure if I spent more time and energy mailing them out, eventually they would’ve found homes in various markets, but in a way this was a nice to set them free by self-pubbing them. They are out in the world and now I am writing more stories.

I definitely think I will keep doing this. I hope to do another chapbook this summer.

Buy Hypergraphia and Other Odd Stories here.

Dear Robot Anthology

Dear Robot ImageMy short story is in the new anthology Dear Robot. Get it here.

Here’s the full Table of Contents:

2 GOD ARTICLE by Rafael S.W
3 WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE by Misha Herwin
4 DRINK, KILL, CONTRACT by Michelle Vider
6 SLEEP FOREVER by Tabitha Sin
7 DODONA 2.0 by Llanwyre Laish
9 DUO-13-TRIP by Marlena Chertock
10 DEAR R.A.Y. by Tanya Bryan
12 WELCOME TO OASIS by Terri Bruce
13 AL’S ROBOT REPAIR by Bruce Markuson
14 USGITP COMMUNIQUE #544 ERC by Johnna Schmidt
15 THE INSTITUTE by Diana Smith Bolton
18 #IAMHUMAN by Christina Keller
19 COUNTDOWN (MY DEAR ONE) by Jacquelyn Bengfort

Mid-November Update 2015

The latest numbers:

Submissions: 7
Acceptances: 1
Rejections: 34

Two more rejections came back, but they were mailed right back out. A couple of stories, I have held off of sending out, because they are off beat. They’re not quite fantasy, but they’re not realistic either. As I stated before, I like to be selective where I send my stuff. Not because I think I’m so grand a writer, but because I want to try and find the best fit for my story. Why should I send a story that is totally wrong to a journal, just because they are open?

That always bothers me when I read editors say that. I think, Why would anyone send their horror story to a romance editor, or vice versa? But apparently, it does happen.

I also realize I like money. If you love the journal and it is on a shoe-string budget (and can’t pay), then you have to decide for yourself whether it is worth it or not. I’ve seen a couple of great places that don’t pay, but have good reputations. Then there are some that are clearly scams and I steer clear of them. All in all, I am more inclined to submit to place that pay something. Even if they only offer ten bucks.

But a lot of factors go into my submission process besides money. Who they have published before, the style of those stories, have I tried before and what kind of response did I get? There was an interesting on-line magazine that was paying (token, not pro-rates), but when I read three of the stories they published, I had to scratch them off my list. I hated every story. Our styles were different and I knew it would be a bad fit.

I’ll probably do a full recap at the end of the year about what I learned during this year long challenge. This year has been so eventful, I need to reflect. Hey that is what this blog is for. Hard to believe, but I graduated only six months ago. Plus, I have to start thinking about new goals for 2016.

Novella is slow going. I’m glad I didn’t do NaNoMo. I would be losing so badly right now. But finishing by Christmas? That is possible. Plenty of time.

Update – End of October 2015

Not much new on the submission front. A couple more rejections came in the last few days, including my first from The New Yorker. Very cool, right? Here is the update:

Submissions: 7
Acceptances: 1
Rejections: 32

I am falling behind on my submissions. I haven’t had a chance to send out the stories that have come back. Need to do that soon. But it looks like I may hit 40 by Dec. 31, so that’s pretty good. I knew I wouldn’t come anywhere close to 100 for the year, but hey, if you’re going to aim – aim high.

One thing that concerns me is that we are moving into the holidays. It’s that time of year when everyone is taking vacation. Things tend to slow down and some publications aren’t open to submissions.

Also, me the writer needs to take a much deserved break too. Always take time to be with your loved ones. You never know how many times you’ll get to be with them.

So now is the time of hibernation for a lot of publications. Ah well, I can be patient and wait for the right place for my stories. I’m not a big fan of sending stories to anyone or anywhere. I am much more precise with my submissions. I don’t want to waste the editors time or my own sending something inappropriate. Why would that work? I don’t think it would and I think it makes you look unprofessional. (Just my opinion, of course.)

Good luck to those that are dong NaNoWrimo this year. I thought about it, but since I am already deep into my novella, I decided not to go for it. I’d rather finish the projects I’m already working on. They should have a month dedicated to that. A month for finishing stories, but I guess you’re supposed to do that every month anyways.

Anyway, happy writing!

Creativity, Publishing, and Turning My Hair Blue

A few weeks ago, I had a snafu with my hair. Every 4-6 weeks I color it to cover the white(I don’t go gray. I go white.) and this time I picked a shade that ended up turning my hair blue. I thought it would be that dark, inky black that had a blue sheen. But that only works if your hair is black to begin with. If you are looking to cover a lighter shade than black, well, it turns your hair blue. I realized about halfway through putting the color on, but what was I going to do? My hair turned out okay. And the color is not too obvious. Frankly, I kinda like it. It’s a nice change from my typical dark brown/soft black shade. It’s already growing out a little and in a few weeks it will get covered up with the new color.

So sometimes a big mistake can end up being a nice change of pace. Sometimes it’s good to shake up your routine. Try something different and learn something new. Lately I’ve been watching some Youtube videos on creativity and entrepreneurship. That’s the new thing now, being creative and having business smarts. I’ll admit that learning about the publishing business is a bit boring at times, but I find myself getting more comfortable to more I watch. There is a lot of good info out there and I am grateful to the people that give it away for free.

In grad school, this was almost never mentioned. Not until the my last class, and even then it was near impossible to touch on everything. And I get it, most of my time needed to be spent learning my craft. That is important. After all, if you can’t write publishable material, you don’t need to worry about the business.

But what happens after that point. Maybe that is why so many people quit writing a year or so after they graduate. The business is too overwhelming? Or maybe they just don’t want to deal with it.

I don’t know…

It helps that a know a few who graduated before me that are continuing to write, submit, and get published. It helps that I still want to write, submit, and get published. I don’t feel burnt out, nor do I feel overwhelmed by the business aspect of publishing. Plenty of people are doing it. I heard someone say that publishing is simple, but not easy. Very true.

What else? We had our first really cold night and that means it’s time to break out the winter teas! Yum! Fuel for the early morning (or late night) writing.