Freaking Out

It’s done. I just submitted my first collection to Amazon for pre-order with a release date of October 13th. I figured why not? The books done and I was only going to do a final typo check anyway, which I can still do.

When I send my first story out to a magazine a few months ago, I barely felt anything. i expected a rejection and was fine with that. None of the rejections I’ve receive since, have bothered me. Now, that I’ve essentially finalized it, I’m physically freaking out. My mind’s calm in an I’m-going-to-die kind of way. At the same time, I’m sitting at my desk with my hands shaking and my breathing slightly off. I’ve never reacted to anything like this, and it’s kind of disturbing. And the stupid thing, isn’t even processed yet.

Glad I did it, though. At least now chickening out is far more trouble than it’s worth.

I Might Be Breaking up With NaNoWriMo

I hit my target word count sometime around the 17th. Now that I’ve had time to reflect on my experience, and have gone back to my previous write some/edit some routine, I have to say that the only thing Camp NaNo did for me this time was to slow me down. It’s not the story’s fault. That I still like and will continue working on, but as more of a side project.

Don’t get me wrong. I still had fun doing Camp, but I’m apparently not really a single project writer. I like to bounce back and forth, and to split my working time between writing and editing, doing more of one according to necessity.  Maybe going full focus on NaNo was a mistake. I don’t know, but at the moment I’m not sure if I want to do November or not. I’ll see when the time comes.

Thing is, I don’t need that push from a third party anymore. i can hold myself accountable now. In the past year, I’ve had one migraine day where I “only” manged around 400 words and one day where I couldn’t be bothered to start writing until just before midnight, but I  did a nice 2k+ before retiring. And that’s the other thing: Lately I’ve stopped writing to a specific word count and haven’t recorded or even checked mine in a good two weeks. I’ve pages upon pages of new writing, freshly edited stories, and ideas, I plan to develop further.

I’ve only one story left in my first batch that I haven’t looked at yet. The rest are waiting for me to give them a final check for typos and punctuation etc. at the end of september before they hit the virtual shelves.

I think, I may have leveled up and NaNo simply has no place in my new level.

And Then Yet Another Story Idea Jumped Me

I walked home through town, the other day and came past an empty butcher’s. I’ve gone this way before several times over the last few months and never seen this shop open. There are no opening hours and no meat in the displays, but all the furniture and decorations are still in place. I’ve never thought much of it or the, just as abandoned looking, bakery further down the street.

This time, though, a wasp chased after me as I walked past the butcher’s and it made me wonder what could cause someone to just up and abandon a store like that. I settled on the owner dying during some sort of experiment and to cover it up, the bills are still being paid by whoever. Still needs some ironing out, but I’m getting into it.

I’ve also got the urge to write something centered on a gothic church, but until I know  if I can spin that in to, at least, a longer novella, I’m not touching it. I’m not sure I want to invest, what could amount to,weeks of research, into a short story.

Idea are kind of weird for me. I used to think that getting an idea meant thinking of a story one wants to write. I’ve had images, objects, titles, words, or phrases, but never even a rough story. It’s always I want to write something containing X. I like the real way I get ideas better than the expected, though. This way they’re more combinable.

Seeking Rejections Versus Seeking Sales

Now that I know, I want to both self publish and keep submitting new stories to magazines, I’m a bit torn on  my strategy for that. So far, I’ve been submitting to mostly high paying magazines, but it might make more sense to switch to those with a higher rate of personal rejection regardless of pay rate. Of course, if a, for example 3 dollars flat magazine wanted to buy the story I sent them, I’d sell. I mean it’s still exposure, and, I don’t think my conscience would allow for anything else. Still, I feel a little like I’d be using them. I haven’t made a final decision on this yet.

It’s Getting Personal

Got my first personal rejection today and I’m elated. If I’m reading it right, the story overall worked fine but the ending was lackluster. It’s still a no, but it gives me something concrete to improve on an I’ve always suspected that endings were something I still have a ways to go on.

I’ve a stack of stories, I never finished because I couldn’t think of an ending that didn’t seem contrived to me.  Hearing it from a more official source, helps me trust in my own judgment and shows me that I’m fairly aware of my skill–sometimes, anyway–despite my limited experience.

All in all, that was absolutely worth the wait. Makes me wonder, though. How many of my formal rejections were due to the endings, too? Except for the one, where I managed to delete the first page from the file send, I’ve not gotten any instant rejections.Now, I know that doesn’t mean it took the other magazines that long to decide. But more likely that there were many others before mine.

It doesn’t matter, I suppose. Most of those submission have since been rewritten or edited again,but I’m going to have a closer look at their endings now. I’ll have a look at this story later and see if I can find a way to fix it, then decide on its future.

Only thing that bummed me out a little–with myself, not them–is that I gave away the ending in the title, because I changed it to Scotophobia after deciding that the original title, which I can’t remember anymore, was lame. Go , me…I guess.

Runaway Stories Ruining my Plans

I’m about 5k into the novella I started this month and I’m beginning to fell like I’m moving the plot along too fast. Now, I’d understand if it were a new story, but it’s just a conversion.I don’t really mind it running longer than I’d planned. I just don’t think that I can stick to my October self publishing plan if I end up with a novel instead of a novella, which kind of sucks and is kind of awesome. Dunno, I’m kinda torn.Earlier potential income versus higher potential income per unit sold. I suppose, it gives me more time to release short stories and build a name for myself, which again equates to a higher potential income. And I get to enjoy writing it longer.

I’m taking my first collection through final edits now; just got the rejection on one of the stories I wanted to put in there. I’m thinking that one’s more low key psychological horror or drama than fantasy, though. So I might still take it out and keep submitting it.

I’m also working on planning the next batch. And here, i thought NaNo would keep me from working on my short stories. Granted, I won’t be completing a new one a week, but I’m not slacking off either. And NaNo makes writing twice as fun. Especially since my cabin is kind of amazing.