It has been a big week for me in my writing life, so now is as good a time as any to get caught up.
From the start of 2016, I committed to writing one short story a month. I wanted to focus on improving my skills as a writer by trying a bunch of different ideas on how speculative stories are told. As I finished and polished a story I would start it on the submission circuit, trying to match a story with a market or contest.
Most of this year has been filled with rejections, many rejections. Both my first novel and a half dozen short stories have been rejected again and again. This is a normal part of the process, but I am not going to lie, it hurts.
Of course that is why it is important to celebrate a win, even a little win, for a little fish.
My week started with a bang as I received an email I never expected.
“ … Your story has been judged and is an Honorable Mention for the 3rd quarter of the L. Ron Hubbard Writers of the Future Contest. Congratulations! …”
I was dumbfounded. I had submitted a short story titled, Gators In Kansas and other Hazards of Modern Farming, to the Writers of the Future Contest on a lark. Regardless of how you feel about their sponsor (yes, that L. Ron Hubbard) this is a serious writing competition in my genre. No I didn’t win, but to get a nod, a wink, a ‘that was pretty good’ really lifted me up. As a writer you don’t get a pat on the back often and this was a great moment, my first professional writing credit!
And then it happened again.
In the same week, a writer friend I met at a conference decided to feature a different story of mine on his website.
www.reecedaniel.com featured my story Swift Delivery on the site for his weekly Friday stories on September 23, 2016! While this isn’t Asimov or Clarkesworld or Shimmer, to be featured by a fellow writer is an absolute joy and honor. You can read my story here:
Every day I try to step forward, and after months of slogging along it feels great to share some success. I hope you’ll read Swift Delivery and as soon as Gators In Kansas finds a publication home I will be sure to share that one too.
Overall it has been a pretty good week.